gif of Russian twists with a battle rope

Dare Try these 7 Battle Rope Workout Movements?

10 Battle Ropes Benefits Reading Dare Try these 7 Battle Rope Workout Movements? 8 minutes Next Complete Battle Rope Workout for Beginners Guide
Doing 7 battle rope movements like the ones below, show why battle rope workouts have become quite popular over recent years. According to Jonathan Ross, spokesperson for the American Council on Exercise, “It’s a little like running with the upper body. It’s not just using different muscles but training muscles in different ways.” Recent research into battle rope workouts supports this. A well-known 2015 study found "the use of battle rope exercises to stress upper body muscles and support that unilateral movements may provide a different training stimulus. Data provided on muscle activity should serve as valuable information to improve the effectiveness of the workout or the training program when battle rope exercises are performed." Implementing a battle rope workout leads to varied stimulation to your upper body, which is exactly what you're looking for when training with battle ropes. The versatility of battle ropes, used either bilaterally or unilaterally, give them a unique advantage over other training methods. You can use them to keep your upper body off-balance, leading to consistent cardio and/or muscular gains, when other methods fall short, and cause you to plateau.
battle rope workout More than 1 way to do the wave.

Dial in the Muscles You Choose

The other main advantage of battle ropes enables you to target specific muscles and muscle groups, based on their unilateral or bilateral use. The 2015 study by Calatayud, Martin, et. al., showed that unilateral battle rope movements target the external obliques, while bilateral battle rope movements focus on the lumbar erector spinae. In laymen's terms, doing single-armed battle rope exercises work the sides of your abdomen and torso, while dual-armed exercises work the vertical muscles parallel to your spine. However, whether you do a unilateral or bilateral battle rope workout, both will hit your anterior deltoid and gluteus medius muscles. In other words, the front of your shoulders, and muscles on the sides of your hips will get stronger fast. If you're still not convinced of the science behind battle ropes, check out our other battle rope blog that will erase any doubts. If you're already sold, read on and learn why you'll love battle rope training.

Lots to Love about Battle Ropes

Battle ropes benefit your health and strength without a doubt, so you have good reason to start using them. Here's why Jonathan Ross, the aforementioned spokesperson for the American Council on Exercise loves them:
  • The visual and sensory feedback provided by the rope is a great indication of the quality of the effort produced by your body.
  • It feels like playing even when you are working hard.
  • The movement of the rope is a beautiful rendering of physics in action.
These are all great points. I've always said that watching a high-quality battle rope session is like seeing high school trigonometry in action. Those soothing waves, that are so much eye candy, look like sine and cosine, or whatever those are. I didn't do well in high school math classes, and that's why I'm better with words. Who can argue that seeing yourself generating those cool waves isn't cool gratification? It's like ASMR for the eyes. No one would love battle ropes more than Pythagoras. Tell that to your trainer. Also, the other point that hits the target is that battle ropes offer an element of play. I'm not a big battle rope guy, as I've always tended toward powerlifting and weightlifting. But, as you know, you always want to mix up your training on a regular basis, as often as you can, to keep breaking through that physiological plateau. There's a lot to be said about picking up a tool that suddenly puts some fun into your workout, and brings out the kid in you. So without further ado, now that you're ready to smash you're upper body and take your cardio to the limit, we dare you to try these 7 battle rope workout movements. You haven't seen or tried anything like these, I'm willing to bet on it.

7 Unique, Challenging Battle Rope Workout Movements

1. Alternating Waves x Stutter Steps with resistance band

We're not wasting anytime, cranking up the intensity level on your training to the max. I'm tired already, just watching this. Tip 'o' the hat on the creativity and ingenuity to come up with this one. Talk about an all-body workout. You're going to hit abs, glutes, hip flexors, and your entire upper body with this.

2. Alternating Lunges with Slams

These won't be easy either. Easier for sure, but not a cake walk by any means. This would be a great way to ease into your program after you warm up. If you're looking to work your quads and hamstrings, along with your upper body at the same time, this is the workout you've been looking for.

3. Battle Rope Chops with Mini Band

Here's a clever twist on a classic battle rope workout. Perform your standard chops, but add a mini-band around your wrists. Woof. I use mini-bands around my wrists in a push up position, then "walk" one arm at a time, to the left, for 10 steps. Then I reverse. It's great to work your back muscles after a long day at the desk with poor posture and ergonomics. I can only imagine what putting a mini-band around your wrists to do battle rope chops must feel like. This will turn your shoulders into bowling balls.

4. Battle Rope Alternating Waves with Step Ups Wearing a Weight Vest

You want to drop the hammer on yourself? How much pain do you enjoy? One word for this workout: Ka-BOOM!!! Wow. I don't think it's necessary to say much about this grueling endeavor. It's going to annihilate your entire body. If you can't handle all of the stress, skip the weight vest. Also, they deserve an extra cheat day for the creativity and ingenuity for coming up with this.

5. Swiss Ball Battle Rope Side Slams

These battle rope people are crazy! Who thinks of these things? I've actually used Swiss balls to lift cable weights, as you can really target your abs doing crunches. But this?!?! That's what you're going to get with this two fer; upper body work and ab work. Plus the people at your gym will either look at you strange or their jaws will be hitting the floor.

6. Battle Rope Alternating Waves on Bosu Ball with Squats

I might need oxygen before I'm done even writing this. Good lord. The respect for these people is off the charts. Same for their creativity. Again, I've used Bosu balls in the past to lift weights on. They're a great, different stimulus to add to your training, as they always add stress to your lower body and abdomen. You're going to put your lower body and abs to the test with this rope workout, along with your upper body. If you want a firm back end, legs like tree trunks and sculpted arms, look no further.

7. Battle Rope One-Armed Alternating Waves in Plank Position

This is the icing on the creativity cake. If you don't know already, anytime you put yourself into a plank position, to do anything, it ramps up the difficulty significantly. Think rebel rows. I've never seen this battle rope workout before either. Again, much like the previous movements, this is a super duper two fer. You're going to hammer your upper body, while you also test the limits of your core. Spending time doing these will have your stomach and upper body looking tight and toned in no time.


As you can tell, we're firm believers in the benefits of battle ropes. We don't want to leave you at the end of your rope either. So if you're in the market for another unique battle rope workout, go over here. We hope you found this valuable and learned a ton about battle ropes. If you want to learn more, check out our other blog that discusses the benefits of battle ropes. In the case that you're now totally convinced of the awesomeness of battle ropes, but you don't own one, we have a brand spanking new battle rope for you to check out. Thanks for stopping by and giving us a read. Until next time, stay awesome and don't get too roped in!