Best Shoes for Jumping Rope
If you’re in a hurry and just want to find out what the best shoes for jumping rope are, then we recommend the Nike Men’s Air Monarch 4 as the best pair for men and the Reebok Crossfit Nano 8.0 as the best pair for women.
Do you know what’s great about jumping rope? Everything. A lot of people don’t think of it in their workout, but it’s one of the best full-body workouts you can do. However, before you pick up that rope and start jumping away, there’s one thing you need to consider: footwear.
And this applies whether you’re doing jump rope on its own or as part of metcon, CrossFit or any other type of HIIT. The shoes we recommend can also be classed as the best all round gym trainers and the best shoes for hiit.
Don’t be a fool like I used to be and wear whatever sneakers or shoes look good. I’ve done my research, so you don’t have to.
Here Are The Best Shoes For Jumping Rope:
- Reebok Women’s Crossfit Nano 8.0 shoes
- Puma Women’s Tazon 6 Cross-Trainer Shoe
- Nike Women’s Free RN Flyknit Running Trainers
- Nike Men’s Air Monarch IV Training Shoes
- Adidas Speed Trainer 3 Shoes
Jump Rope as a Workout
You probably remember jumping rope as a kid. There were so many games associated with it, two ropes were being twirled at once, and there was usually some sort of song related to it.
So how did that playground game become one of the most popular forms of cardio in recent years then?
Well, the first thing to say is that it isn’t a recent trend. People have been jumping rope for time immemorial. Think back to those old black and white clips of boxers training. Now whilst boxing training has changed over the years, jumping rope has remained a staple of every boxer’s workout.
It’s also become immensely popular amongst the CrossFit community and for good reason. And that’s because rope jumping provides the following benefits;
- Boosts Fat Burning – You can burn between 600-1000 calories per hour from jumping rope. Remember you need to create a calorific deficit of 3500 calories to lose 1 pound of fat, so 1 hour of jumping gets you quite far into that target.
- Full Body Workout (Almost) – So jump rope isn’t just a calves workout. Quite the contrary, getting through an intense jump rope session works your rear delts, abdominals, quads and hamstrings. As you can see, whilst it’s not quite a full-body workout, you do engage significant muscles across both your upper and lower body.
- Better Endurance – I talked about boxers jumping rope earlier, and there is an excellent reason for that. Rope Jumping increases your heart rate faster than any other exercise routine and helps to build up your aerobic capacity for those long 12 rounders in the ring. However, if you’re not a pugilist, then it will help your stamina in a variety of other sports.
- Improves Mental & Physical Functions – So jumping rope is a combination of mental and physical elements. There is a lot of hand-eye coordination required. Just have a think about it. You’re having to combine rhythm and timing in less than a second. And your brain is always working to recognize spatial differences, timing missteps etc. to keep those rotations going. The mental workout has an ongoing positive effect on your cognitive function. So you can say that jump rope trains both the body and the mind.
- Fun and Easy – So I’ll be brutally honest with you, it’s not fun to start with. I’ll also double down and tell you that it won’t be easy, to begin with, either. You’ll begin by thinking I used to do this as a kid every playtime, it was fun, easy etc. It’s hard, the sooner you accept that the sooner you can get on the path to it becoming fun, easy and exhilarating workout. It takes time but stick with it, you’ll find yourself playing jump rope like you were a kid again in no time whatsoever.
Why Do I Have To Wear Shoes?
Odds are, you already know why wearing any old shoes isn’t a good idea—who would wear high heels to jump rope? But you may wonder why you can’t just go without shoes altogether.
But if you jump rope on soft grass, for example, being barefoot isn’t that big of a deal. But harder surfaces are much more of an issue. So jump rope shoes become an essential
When you are jumping rope barefoot, every time you land, the shock of the impact goes through your feet, including your ankles, and up to your knees. And you’re doing it over and over. That’s a lot for your joints to take. If you have training shoes, however, the bottom of the footwear is taking the shock on behalf of your foot.
Don’t forget, too; you’re potentially smacking your bare feet with the rope. No one needs that! So, let’s be safe and go for a pair of good jump rope shoes.
How To Choose The Best Shoes For Jumping Rope
You might think that jumping rope is the easiest thing in the world—I mean, you see little girls on the playground doing it all the time, right? It’s true, kids love it, but they’re doing it for some casual fun, so they’re going pretty easy on themselves.
Jumping rope is good for your heart, and is a fantastic calorie-burner. However, it does put a lot of stress on your knees and ankles—as any type of jumping naturally would. If you have serious knee/joint conditions, be very careful about doing this exercise, and consult a medical professional if necessary.
There are ways you can reduce this stress, however. One is the correct form—always critical in any type of exercise—and the other is the right training shoe. Let’s take a look in more detail why shoes are so important for jumping rope.
But what exactly should you be looking for in a good shoe?
Below are the three key features you want to look for in your shoes when you’re jumping rope. There are other things that you’ll look out for that are more based on your natural preference—price, cool colors and shiny logos, etc.
But there are certain features you must tick off your list first:
- Arch support.
- Ankle support.
- No elevation.
Good Arch Support
If you’re unaware, the arch of the foot is the part between the ball and the heel. Your arch is important because it’s what allows your foot to support the full weight of your body. Lose your arch, and your body’s going down.
When you are rope jumping, your whole foot gets hit by a huge shock, and the arch takes the lion’s share of it. For this reason, your arch is going to need support, so it doesn’t take too much damage and cause you injury. Certain shoes, particularly walking shoes, have a heavy focus on arch support for this reason.
Considering how important its job is, the ankle is a rather delicate part of the body. I’m sure you have plenty of memories of twisting, spraining or—if you’re particularly unlucky—breaking your ankle. It’s easy done, but you can avoid this and keep your feet by investing in a shoe with excellent ankle support.
Generally, high-top shoes provide the most ankle support. However, there are also options, such as taping.
It’s also a good idea to strengthen your ankles through exercise, though, as even with the best shoes in the world, a weak ankle doesn’t stand much of a chance when your jumping rope.
No Elevated Heels/Platforms
Some shoes have elevated heels built in—these help, for example, with certain types of weightlifting in CrossFit. However, if you’re jumping high and landing flat on your feet, these compromise your stability and seriously throw off your balance. This could mean you end up falling over or twisting your ankle.
You want your jump rope shoes to have a more natural bottom that better mimics your natural foot shape.
The Five Best Shoes For Jumping Rope
Don’t panic about sorting through a ton of shoes, though; I’ve chosen the five best just for you!
Reebok’s Women’s Nano 8.0 is available in a whopping 23 designs at the time of writing. It’s available in sizes 5 to 11.
The upper part of the shoe is made with flexweave, a woven material that allows for breathability and stretch support. With this, your feet are allowed movement without the shoe being too flexible.
Also, the sole is rubber and flat to provide stability but also has cushioning for shock absorption. So it doesn’t matter how high you jump. The rubber outsole also has a pretty good grip, so you can hit your jump without sliding when you hit the floor.
Overall, these are high-quality, sturdy and compact shoes for jumping rope. They’re stable, durable and don’t make your feet feel like they’re in a bear trap, while still not bending or twisting under high impact. With so many designs to choose from, too, you can pick the exact look you want. Grab a pair and try them out. They’re a great example of a cross trainer.
- Tons of colors available.
- Flexweave for breathability.
- Extremely flat sole.
- Wide toe box.
- Some users report issues with wide/flat feet.
- Reports of stretching issues with the flexweave.
Another trusted and reliable brand, this Puma shoe is available in three designs and sizes 5.5 to 11. There are also wide size options.
These shoes are made from synthetic leather—so you needn’t worry about using animal products—and have a rubber sole to absorb that jump impact.
They’re particularly useful for comfort and snug fit needs, making them a suitable training shoe for metcon, jump rope and CrossFit. The midfoot saddle, a reinforced mesh to support the midfoot, provides the snugness. I’m also particularly impressed with the arch support. And as I pointed out earlier, without a study arch, you’re hitting the floor.
You don’t get the variation in color and design that you do with other shoes of this type—and two of the designs are very similar. However, if that’s not particularly a concern to you, these are still great shoes, and it can’t be beaten for comfort.
- Wide size options.
- Midfoot saddle for fit.
- Superior arch support.
- Lightweight and comfortable.
- Quite narrow in the front.
- Some users report stiffness.
Nike Women’s Flyknit running trainers come in three designs and currently sizes 7.5 to 11.
These have a cool yarn effect on the upper side of the shoe, are breathable and quite stretchy. The rubber sole does well to protect the impact through your joints.
Overall, this is the shoe I’d recommend as best for movement. It gives your feet a little more freedom than some of the others, although you may take the smallest of dents in your sturdiness as a result. But these will do their job when it comes to jumping rope.
- Stretchy but not unstable.
- Very comfortable.
- Cool yarn design.
- Narrow toe box
- Colors are rather dull.
It seems like I’d forgotten that dudes jump rope, too. Don’t worry; these next shoes are for the guys.
Coming in a stylish black, these shoes are synthetic leather and have a lightweight phylon midsole and a strong rubber sole
The synthetic leather is durable—I’d always recommend this material for toughness—and perforations in the shoe allow decent airflow, so your feet will be able to breathe nicely.
The midsole is made from a lightweight foam, and the shoe contains air-sole cushions that keep your feet nice and cushioned. Not only will your jumps not rattle your bones, but you’ll also feel comfortable.
For pure comfort, no guy can go wrong with these shoes. You’ll feel like you’re walking on clouds!
- Air-sole unit cushions.
- Durable and tolerate heavy use.
- Available in extra-wide.
- Strong rubber outsole.
- Only one color is available.
- Some users report squeaking.
From a rather narrow selection to a seemingly endless one, the Adidas Speed Trainer is available in 12 designs at the time of writing. You can also get it in sizes 4 to 18, and 1 to 6 in big kid sizes.
These men’s training shoes are made from synthetic leather and have a rubber sole. They also have a removable insole and are ultra-light for speedy movement.
The upper part of the shoe is mesh and inspired by the ZX flux sneaker, and the outsole has a fantastic grip.
This is the true definition of a training shoe—it can take short, sharp shocks well, but would likely struggle with running, for example. So, for jumping rope, it’ll hold up just fine.
Overall, this is a tough little shoe that’ll be able to take the impact of constant jumping well. It’s comfortable, too, although some users report it can run a little small. The heel has some slightly odd padding that may feel off at first, but your feet will get used to it through frequent use.
- Removable insole.
- Very tough with sharp impacts.
- Wide variety of designs and sizes.
- Good grip.
- Can run a little small.
- Padding takes a little time to get used to.
The Inov-8 Company tends to produce shoes that are lightweight and flexible. The F-Lite 235 is no exception to this trend. You get a rubber sole that is both durable but also designed to cushion the downward impact of a person coming down from a jump.
The F-Lite 235 comes with ADAPTERFIT technology as part of its make up. This tech provides the user with a variable fit. So for those with wider feet who often have to jam their toes into a pair of otherwise perfect shoes, you don’t have that problem here. The toebox provides more than enough room for your foot as you’re jumping rope. But what if you don’t have wide feet? Well, then the F-Lites have what is known as precision form which ensures a more precise fit and keeps your foot in place.
You also have a groove right at the forefoot almost on the balls of the feet on the outsole., It’s almost perfectly designed for jumping rope and gives you an excellent little flexion point to bounce up and down on.
The F-Lites come in a wide array of colours, so there is something for everyone. Although they do tend to run about 1/2 a size to big so bear that in mind when purchasing
Overall this shoe is a great design which gives the jumper a grounded feel and the lightweight design ensures there is no additional weight on your weight when jumping.
- Good grip.
- Can run a little large
For those of you with a CrossFit inclination, we’re introducing some controversy into the mix now. The Nike Metcon’s are notorious for being banned at the Reebok branded CrossFit competitions. Now I’m not saying that it was just a purely commercial decision………
But Nike being Nike fired back with some pretty cool adverts back in the day. If you can remember that far back the slogan they came up with was “Don’t ban Our Shoe, Beat Our Shoe”. However, this isn’t CrossFit; this is jump rope, and the MetCon 4 is an excellent pair of shoes for jumping rope.
They’re an update on previous versions, so you get a super strong flywire cable with the laces that lock these shoes on to your feet. The Metcon’s also have a lightweight foam cushion to protect your feet from the impact of jumping.
You also get a very stable platform with a flat heel to help keep you planted. You also get a very durable and comfortable sole alongside that to aid your stability and balance.
Overall these are a great pair of cross-training shoes that are amongst the best shoes for jumping rope. You can use them for a wide variety of activities, in fact. Although I would recommend keeping an eye on the sizing as they do tend to run slightly on the smaller side.
- Long Lasting
- Wide variety of designs and sizes.
- Good grip.
- Can run a little small.
So where to start with the Vibram? Well, the design is normally the first thing that comes to mind, so let us begin there. So to start, they are the shape of the human foot and purposely so. What you get here is essentially a minimalist barefoot design designed to mimic the contours of your foot and therefore the biomechanics of your body and movements.
I owned a pair many years ago, in fact, I owned a couple. My primary use for them was for working out in general. Still, I also had some knee problems from wearing the wrong types of shoes back then. The Vibram’s helped me figure out my problem was, in fact, supination, but that’s another story.
This particular model is made out of a Spandex and polyester upper. This is done to give you flexibility in movement whilst jumping and also to keep them light, so you’re not weighed down during your movements. You get a 3D cocoon technology that forms part of the rubber sole and an EVA insole which gives you both protection across the foot but particularly around the balls of your feet.
The outsole has a slew of multidirectional grips so your foot will be planted whichever way you decide to go. Overall these are a great pair of minimalistic shoes but be warned if you’re not used to this type of shoe your ankles and feet will not forgive you. Also, they can be worn with thin toe socks, but I wouldn’t recommend it, and they will set you back a pretty penny. By far one of the more expensive options on the list, but by no means a poor choice.
- The original barefoot shoes
- Lightweight and flexible
- Good grip.
- Takes a bit of getting used to
The New Balance WX608v4 are renowned for their support and comfort are amongst our 10 best shoes. You get a fantastic leather upper that is breathable with an EVA footbed that adds a lot of cushioning and comfort to your feet as your jumping. The EVA footbed makes jump rope feel that much more comfortable on your feet.
They are a bit bulky looking but don’t judge a book by its cover. These New Balance shoes are actually reasonably flexible and lightweight, they can be best described as a good all-rounder. You get a nice melting pot of balance, comfort, cushioning and stability.
They do tend to run a bit on the small side though, and that extra cushioning that we just mentioned might not be suitable for all. If you’re not prepared for it, then it could take a small amount of time for you to adjust to it, but all in all a decent all-rounder for jumping rope.
- Great upper
- Comfortable padding
- Custom Orthotics can be used
- Can run a little small.
- Bit bland looking
So you get a very basic, clean and minimal feel, look and design with these shoes. They’re incredibly lightweight and comfortable on your feet and come with a wide toe box. Especially important for those of you have to sometimes cram your feet into a tight-fitting pair of shoes
The sole is flat as you would expect from such a minimalist shoe which gives you the feeling of being right on top of things. In this case, the ground, as your jumping up and down through the rope.
The sole gives you a lot of traction and protection as you would expect from a pair of barefoot shoes. There have been numerous reports of sizing issues with these shoes, but back in Aug 2019 they resized the entire brand, so this shouldn’t be a problem going forward. Slightly on the pricey side and a bit bland in terms of the variety that exists. But otherwise a decent all-rounder.
- Lightweight and Flexible
- Minimalist/Barefoot feeling
- Wide variety of uses as well as jump rope
- Resizing in Aug 2019 to resolve previous size issues
- Lack of variety
If you’re already jumping rope like crazy and want to get a new set of shoes, or you’re just starting and have no idea what to look for, you should find a shoe to meet your needs here.
My best option for women would be the Reebok Women’s Crossfit Nano 8.0, due to their unwavering durability and host of cool-looking designs.
For the bros, my best option are the Nike Men’s Air Monarch IV Training Shoes, as they’re tough while still being comfortable. However, you can’t go wrong with any option on this list.
Break out your skipping rope, put on your shoes, and get jumping!