Jacobs Ladder Exercise Benefits & The Best Jacob’s Ladder Workout

Jacobs Ladder Exercise benefits
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The Jacobs Ladder Exercise can help you burn fat and get in the best shape of your life!

Developed by Steve Nichols, (a former Western New York fitness champion), the Jacobs Ladder exercise provides a total body workout in a very short amount of time.

To use the Jacob’s Ladder exercise, the user is required to climb a revolving-endless ladder.

Is it exercise, or torture? Well, maybe a little bit of both.

Using a Jacob’s Ladder machine is definitely worth the effort, but there is a lot of effort involved! Working out on a Jacobs Ladder Machine is an excellent simulation for many real-life tasks, and it is suitable cardiovascular training for nearly all athletes.

Check out this video of me performing a set on the Jacob’s Ladder while wearing an elevation training mask and a weight vest:

Want to learn all of the Jacob’s Ladder exercise benefits? Keep reading below!

How Does a Jacob’s Ladder Machine Work?

Getting familiar with the Jacob’s Ladder machine is quite simple, although it’s definitely not an easy exercise. The most difficult task is to keep your coordination and control your body’s movement in a steady rhythm while learning to climb on the ladder.

Other features of the Jacob’s Ladder are:

  • A user-defined feature that ensures your safety. If your foot slips, the ladder will slow down until you regain your balance and can ride the ladder to the ground.
  • You are provided additional safety with a waist strap, which also controls how quickly you can move.
  • It is easy to change your speed, as you simply move your legs more or less powerfully to your desired speed.

Benefits of the Jacobs Ladder Exercise

Overall, there are numerous benefits of the Jacobs Ladder exercise which makes it usable for nearly everyone. Here are a few of the main benefits:

Perfect for Increasing Anaerobic Endurance and Getting a Shredded Physique

Training with the Jacobs Ladder provides you with an incredible bang-for-your-buck workout because of its unique anaerobic-aerobic capabilities. In my opinion, the Jacob’s Ladder is best suited for anaerobic workouts.

Although you can certainly go at a moderate pace and do an aerobic conditioning workout on it, the Jacob’s Ladder is perfect for anaerobic “sprints” which will increase your V02Max Levels and help you become in better condition for athletic competitions.

Furthermore, anaerobic workouts are far superior to aerobic workouts for those who are looking to build a shredded physique.

The easiest way to compare the efficacy of anaerobic and aerobic workouts is to compare the bodies of a sprinter and a marathon runner. Both of these people are generally considered to be great athletes, but the sprinter has the more often desired body.

Anaerobic workouts have consistently been proven to increase fat burning, while also building and strengthening muscles.

According to a study on the effects of High-Intensity Intermittent Exercise (anaerobic training) compared to Steady-State Exercise (aerobic training), that was published in the International Journal of Obesity,

HIIE three times per week for 15 weeks compared to the same frequency of SSE exercise was associated with significant reductions in total body fat, subcutaneous leg and trunk fat, and insulin resistance in young women.”

Doing cardio workouts like jogging on the treadmill for 30 minutes will help you burn calories, but it does not create an “afterburn” effect like anaerobic endurance exercises such as High Intensity Training on the Jacobs Ladder.

If you want to get in shape and develop an aesthetic body that measures up to your fitness idols, doing anaerobic exercises will bring you the results you want.

You Can Choose Your Own Intensity

The Jacob’s Ladder provides you with the freedom to choose your own pace, as you can increase or reduce your pace without any special button. The pace reduces as you slow down, and increases when you increase your pace.

Whether you want to go for 50 feet per minute, or 300 feet per minute, everyone can accomplish their goals on the same piece of equipment!

The position of the machine puts you at a 40-degree angle, providing a climbing position for you which is intense enough for a tremendous workout, but gentle enough for even older adults to do.

This is a safe position in which you can push your own intensity, without worrying.

Minimal Stress on Joints and Tendons

The Jacobs Ladder exercise is a perfect low impact exercise because it can engage your muscles with minimal stress on the joints.

If you want to do a great cardio workout but have relief from joint pain, this is a perfect exercise for you! The Jacob’s Ladder is very easy on the joints of your body, making it an ideal choice for athletes who are recovering from injuries!

I first started using the Jacob’s Ladder exercise when I was rehabbing an ankle injury, and even the ERG Rowing Machine was bothering my ankle!

As a result of the low impact it has on your joints, the Jacobs Ladder is safe for a majority of people at all fitness levels.

Works Your Entire Body at One Time

You might think the Jacobs Ladder is only a lower-body workout, but it is an extremely compound movement. Overall, it works nearly every muscle of both your upper and lower body!

You will not believe the burn in your shoulders and triceps from doing a few sets on the Jacob’s Ladder to finish your workout!

Along with this, your chest will even get some definition from contracting to hold your body on the rungs!

Intense compound exercises such as the Jacob’s Ladder burn an enormous amount of calories, both during and after performing the exercise. This one exercise will greatly increase your metabolism, and burn fat from your body.

Conditioning For Combat and Other Intense Sports

The Jacob’s Ladder Machine is one of the only pieces of exercise equipment which can help to condition a boxer, fighter, basketball player, football player, or athlete who competes in highly intense exercise.

The treadmill or elliptical can work well for people who want to lose some weight or improve their general health, but this will not do much for professional athletes or people who aspire to be professional athletes.

The Jacobs Ladder is perfect for athletes who compete at a higher level because it puts minimal additional stress on your joints, but it also fatigues and conditions your body in a sport-specific way!

These intense sports can easily have your heart rate near 200 beats per minute for extended periods of time, and your conditioning needs to reflect this.

Using the Jacobs Ladder year-round is an excellent way to get this done!

What is the Best Jacob’s Ladder Workout?

Personally, I usually keep my Jacob’s Ladder workouts to shorter-sprints, maximizing the anaerobic benefits of the exercise.

My favorite Jacob’s Ladder workout is 3-5 sets of 100-200 feet, for time!

Depending on how well-conditioned you are, you can start with a shorter amount of distance and then progress to a longer distance for this Jacobs Ladder workout.

In between each set, I will usually walk on the treadmill, or ride the stationary bike for 3-5 minutes as well.

This way, I can fit a wide range of conditioning aspects into 20-25 minutes of work.

This can be performed either before, or after the main part of your daily workout, but I prefer doing it at the end of my workouts.

Different than most conditioning workouts, this training protocol can be used as a warm-up as well though!

Since the Jacob’s Ladder is low-stress on your joints, yet is stimulating for your Central Nervous System, it is a great exercise for priming your entire body for training! Many of us know, some days it can be difficult to perform an extremely intense exercise at the beginning of your workout because your body is not yet warm, or it is fatigued.

The Jacobs Ladder is a perfect solution for this!

Intense exercises have been proven to stimulate your Central Nervous System more than easier ones, and performing a few sets of Jacobs Ladder sprints will prime your body to attack a difficult workout as you could never have imagined!

Concluding Thoughts – Should You Do the Jacob’s Ladder Exercise?

Along with all of the information listed above, the Jacob’s Ladder exercise is superior to more traditional conditioning methods because it is a movement we are usually unfamiliar with.

Due to this, your body will burn far more calories because unique muscles are being worked. Sure, you have used all of these muscles before.

However, this will be in a very different way!

By training in a way in which you are not normally “good,” you will benefit more and see greater results!

For this reason alone, give the Jacob’s Ladder a try!

It is an effective exercise to enhance your aerobic endurance and anaerobic fitness, and it will challenge your body in new and unique ways!

Read Next: The Best Treadmill Alternatives


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