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Best Rest Period Duration for Battle Rope Training
Looking for a new way to add some intensity to your boring workout, try picking up the ropes in your gym. You don’t have to be bored by doing conventional cardio such as a treadmill and steppers when you can swing your way to more fitness. The ‘battling rope’ was pioneered by John Brookfield, a strongman known for ripping 60 decks of cards in half in 60 seconds. Brookfield trained with battle ropes by maneuvering them in a variety of both linear and circular motions to create a peak heart rate in an athlete. Battle ropes are commonly used as a high intensity interval training (HIIT) tool to develop an athlete’s power, explosiveness, as well as their anaerobic and aerobic endurance. The science of battle rope training is further increasing every month. This month in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, researchers reported that if you want the most benefit from using battle ropes, make sure you incorporate short rest periods.
Researchers wanted to quantify and compare the acute metabolic responses to battling rope exercise utilizing two different rest intervals. Twelve men and ten women performed a control protocol and two battling rope exercise protocols on separate days (48 to 72 hours) in random order while connected to a metabolic system. The battling rope protocol consisted of 8 sets of 30-sec intervals (15 sec of single-arm waves and 15 sec of double-arm waves) utilizing either a 1-minute or 2-minute rest interval length. A metronome was used to standardize repetition number/frequency for each exercise, i.e. 15 waves for each arm for single-arm waves and 15 repetitions of double-arm waves.
At the end of the study, mean oxygen consumption values for the entire protocol were significantly higher during the 1-minute rest interval than 2-minute rest interval protocol and values in men and women. Energy expenditure values were significantly higher during the 1-minute rest interval than the 2-minute rest interval protocol in men and women. Blood lactate, mean protocol minute ventilation, and heart rate were significantly higher during the 1-minute rest interval protocol than the 2-minute rest interval protocol and these data were significantly higher in men compared to women. These data demonstrate battling rope exercise poses a significant cardiovascular and metabolic stimulus with the mean effects augmented with use of a short rest interval of 1-minute being superior to 2-minute rest periods for both men and women.
Ratamess NA, Smith C, Beller NA, Kang J, Faigenbaum AD, Bush JA. The Effects
of Rest Interval Length on Acute Battling Rope Exercise Metabolism. J Strength
Cond Res. 2015 May 30.
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