Battling Rope Exercises: Directional Emphasis Training for Added Intensity

I’m a big fan or Battling Ropes exercises! They’re a great way to provide an upper-body dominant power-endurance training stimulus, especially since many of the common conditioning protocols personal trainers, coaches, athletes and fitness enthusiasts use are lower-body dominant. This is precisely why I developed and use battling ropes conditioning protocols like these.

As with any other training modality, I’m always looking for ways to make the most out of the battling-ropes exercises I use. And, one of the best ways I’ve found for increasing the intensity of any double-arm battling ropes exercise, and to for adding a new dimension to these movements, is by doing what I call “changing the directional emphasis.”

The benefit of this battling ropes training concept is highlighted in this 2015 study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, which noted that although the motion of the double arm wave exercise and the double-arm slam exercise is similar, the rope slam creates a higher metabolic demand.

The biggest difference between the two moves (rope slams and double-arm waves) is that rope slams, as the name implies, emphasize forcefully slamming the ropes (downward) against the ground on each rep. This *directional emphasis* focus creates near-maximal or maximal muscle contractions, which increases the overall working intensity. And, it well established that the higher the intensity of the exercise, the greater the metabolic impact it has.

In the video below I show you how the concept of adding (or changing) the directional emphasis can be applied to enhance the intensity of just about any double-arm battling ropes exercise, which helps to increase the intensity and add a new variations to your existing battling ropes exercise arsenal.

Also, check out this video where I demonstrate another of my favorite battling ropes exercises: Press Waves, which is another creative battling ropes exercise that I like to use to take advantage of the concept of directional emphasis.

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