Whether you want to lose weight, tone up, or train for a sporting event, the key is high-intensity workouts that raise your heartbeat and burn excess fat. Starting with simple exercises like Jumping jacks can push your training so that your workout delivers the same results as running a mile in a matter of minutes.
How many jumping jacks equal a mile of running varies according to the exercise’s intensity and duration. Suppose a 88kg (195lbs) man runs for ten minutes at a speed of 8 mph achieving a 7.5-minute mile, he would burn about 199 calories compared to 122 calories for ten-minutes of Jumping jacks.
In the following article, we look at the proven merits of Jumping Jacks as a high-intensity exercise that works all muscle groups leading to toned physiques and improved cardiovascular health. We share the best way to include them in your daily exercise routine, so read on to gain the motivation you need to keep on track to achieving your goals.
The Lowdown on Jumping Jacks
Fitness experts classify jumping jacks within a type of exercise known as plyometrics. The jumps work based on muscle contraction and lengthening. It’s a mix of aerobic exercise and resistance work between weight training for strength and athletic training for power.
These playful jumps are a powerful exercise technique to load into your exercise routine. First used in the East during the 1960s, plyometric exercises, which jumping jacks are classed as being, were introduced into athletic training in the 1970s. Plyometrics increases an athlete’s explosive power and speed. Since this time, jumping jacks have become a staple part of exercise routines around the world.
The Advantages of Jumping Jacks
Here’s a quick summary of the benefits of plyometric exercises like jumping jacks:
- Run faster, jump higher. This exercise means you rapidly stretch then shorten muscle groups. Over time, an athlete’s agility and explosive power improve, making them faster overall.
- Increases bone density. High impact sports have a bone-strengthening effect.
- Improves vascular function. Studies discovered that twelve-weeks of managing high-impact home training significantly reduced susceptibility to heart failure, amongst other diseases.
- Reduces chances of injury. By strengthening muscles, the chance of injury lessens.
Jumping Jacks vs. Running: How Do They Compare?
Here’s a chart that gives an overview of how jumping jacks compares to running. We’ve used the American Council on Exercise and the My Fitness Pal calorie calculators to provide you with an idea of the effectiveness of jogging or running versus jumping jacks.
We’ve calculated these numbers using the average weight for a US male and the average weight for a US female.
|Calories burned over 10 minutes||Calories burned over 30 minutes|
|Exercise Type||Male 88 kg (195 lbs)||Female 76 kg (165 lbs||Male 88 kg (195 lbs)||Female 76 kg (165 lbs|
|Running 12-minute mile at 5mph||117||99||353||299|
|Running 7.5-minute mile at 8mph||199||169||597||505|
|Jumping Jacks (Intense)||122||104||367||311|
As you can see from the chart, the number of calories you burn is directly proportional to the exercise’s duration, intensity, and body weight. Ten-minutes spent doing Jumping Jacks burns fractionally more calories than a gentle ten-minute run, but if you raise the speed of your run, you burn more calories than you would if you were doing Jumping Jacks.
In the following section, we look at how to maximize the benefits of implementing Jumping Jacks into your routine, discuss how to get started, then raise the effectiveness of your exercises, as well as highlight the use of mixing up your routine.
Try These Pointers To Shift Weight and Increase Stamina
If it’s been a while since you’ve sustained a daily workout, the trick is to keep your exercise to a manageable amount so that you will do it every day. However, with plyometric drills, it’s recommended to rotate their frequency, so one day on and one day off will have optimum effect.
A gentle means to ease jumping jacks into your routine is to start with low-impact jumps. This exercise replaces jumps with slide steps, and they’re perfect if you’re carrying extra weight and need to build up your fitness and flexibility.
- Starting with feet together and hands raised to shoulder height, slide your right leg outwards and reach out your right arm so it arches gently above your head.
- As your arm and leg start coming back from their furthest point, start moving out your left arm. Shift the weight from your left leg to your right leg as it comes to the center.
- With the left arm extended over your head and left leg extended about a foot (30cm) from your center, start to bring them back to the center. As you do so, extend your right arm, and the cycle begins again.
- You’ll find that you develop a smooth pendulum motion to your movements. Repeat this activity at least five times for each side. Continue for longer.
Low impact jumping jacks are perfect for anyone new to exercise and needs to take their time to introduce flexibility. For those of you who have the muscle strength already, look to our next exercise:
Standard Jumping Jacks
With the right muscle density and fitness level, you’re in a fantastic place to start with this style of jumping jack.
- Stand with your legs straight, and your arms dropped down at your side.
- Jump upwards, spreading your feet and legs so they land more than hip-width apart. Simultaneously, raise your arms above your head so that your hands are close to clapping.
- Jump again to bring your legs together and your arms to your side. You’re back in the position you started.
Repeat this at least ten times, and why not mix up your routine to include burpees, jump rope, or lunges? To make the most of your high-intensity workout, sustain the exercise for at least thirty seconds or longer, then give yourself a break of ten seconds. After ten seconds, take up your next high-intensity activity once more.
Increased Intensity Jumping Jacks
You want to dial up your jumping jacks’ explosive intensity to push your fitness to the next level. To do so, try a squat style, jumping jack.
- Start by doing regular jumping jacks. When you’re ready, drop into a squat position. You’ll find your legs placed wider than shoulder-width apart. Turn your toes out to protect your knees from impact and strain. Keep your hands set, fingers interlocked, at the back of your head.
- Jump from the squat position, bringing your feet to the center. Once your feet are at the center, jump out to a squat position again to raise your exercise intensity. You’ll soon feel your legs burning. Be sure to cool down properly after your exercise.
To protect yourself during your workout, consider the type of surface you exercise on. We love additional foam floor pads for absorbing shock and minimizing impact.
Bonus Fitness Tip
Jumping jacks belong to a kind of exercise classed as calisthenics, based on using your body’s weight and resistance to build power. If you do burpees alongside jumping jacks, you’re already benefiting from calisthenics. But did you know that by raising the intensity of such exercises and taking brief breaks between repetitions of each activity, you’ll burn even more fat?
So our last tip is this: raise the vigour at which you do your jumping jacks. Perform as many as you can within a thirty-second period, then rest for ten seconds. After ten seconds, perform as many jumping jacks as you can in thirty seconds again. Then take a break. Repeat.
Load high-intensity interval exercises into your routine, especially if you’re intent on shedding pounds and building aerobic plus anaerobic health. And remember that while you’ll feel the burn, you’ll soon feel the benefits, also.
To gain the most significant effects from your workout, the secret is consistency no matter the exercise you do. Build training into your daily and weekly routine and stick to it. It will take a few weeks of activity to start to see the effects, and remember, the most powerful effects of exercise are often not seen as you improve your inner health.
- ACE Fitness: Physical Activity Calorie Counter
- Ace Fitness: 6 Exercise Swaps That Will Kick up the Intensity of Your Workout
- Live Strong: How Many Jumping Jacks Do You Have to Do Daily to Lose Weight?
- Physiological Society: Clapping Jumping Jacks to Improve Endothelial
- Health Line: Jumping Jacks, Benefits, Risks, in Pregnancy, How to, and More
- IJCRR: Plyometric Training, A Review