Jumping Jacks and Weight Loss

Jumping jacks is an exciting cardio routine to lose weight.

Jumping Jack

Jumping Jack

Whether it’s running on a treadmill or pedaling a stationary bicycle for hours, cardiovascular exercises have a tendency to get boring with time. That’s the reason why many people drop out of an exercise regimen since after a while, there is nothing much to keep them perked up. How you wish you could jog in a big park lined by eucalyptus and blooming with lilies or cycle around a blue lake watching the sun rise across the waters.

Alas, you don’t live in Alps. Besides, the harsh weather and lack of time do not even permit you a visit to the neighborhood park. So there you remain sweating it out on the machines and hoping for a change. In such a scenario jumping jacks can be a good option to get out of the rut and still manage to whisk away that body fat for a new and shapely you.
As the name suggests, jumping jacks help you lose weight by making you jump. Sounds like fun? That’s what millions of jumping jacks fan across the world also feel. From school drills to aerobic workouts in gyms, jumping jacks have made their presence felt over the years.

Since no specific equipment is required, jumping jacks can be done anywhere, any time. The exercise has been practiced since the mid-19th century, but it became popular due to efforts of famous fitness trainer Jack Lalanne in the 1950s.  Though it was first regarded as just a stretching or warm up exercise, research studies showed jumping jacks can help lose weight in a significant manner.[ad#728-90 after post]

How you do it

With the first jump, you spread your legs and clap both hands above your head. The next jump gets you back in the original position with your legs straight and arms by your side. Seems simple, does not it? That’s the best part of this exercise. Since it does not seem too intimidating, everybody likes to try it. With time you can do the same jumps at a faster pace and feel the difference. The heart rate goes up, lung capacity increases and the wide stretch opens up your body parts. The jumps also end up strengthening your bones while the heavy breathing and high pulse rate burns off the calories.

The number of calories burned while doing jumping jacks depends on your weight. Interestingly, the heavier a person, the greater is the number of calories burned. Needless to say, increasing intensity and duration will give you better results. Since the jumps also put a lot of stress on the leg joints, it is a good bone-strengthening exercise.

As with all cardiovascular exercises, jumping jacks also reduce risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and heart disease.

Make it better

Jumping jacks can also be a good warm up routine since they offer the benefits of both cardio and stretching exercises. An increased heart rate due to jumping jacks during warm up will help in burning more calories during your workout. Since the jumps don’t take much time, you can easily incorporate them in your exercise schedule. Besides the warm up, you can also add them in between the strength training.

Despite being an easy-to-do exercise, endless jumps can also get boring for some and they yearn for some variations. Reversing the positions of your hands, you can start with the overhead clap before getting arms sideways with a jump. Also, the position of foot can be diagonal to each other instead of the parallel position. You can also perform alternate jumps on a step hence adding another obstacle to the exercise.

Be aware that jumping jacks put a lot of force on knees, ankles and hips and can lead to injuries. Therefore, regular rest in between the sets is essential.

So what are you waiting for? Put on your shoes and get jumping.[ad#afterpost]