Battle rope workout sessions can reduce even the fittest guy to a gasping pile of sweat. But it’s worth it, because a good battle rope circuit delivers fun calorie burn, and torches your entire body.

Need proof? Try this full-body battle rope circuit finisher from trainer Paul Sklar, C.S.C.S. This series is ruthless cardiovascular work that’ll leave every body part burning, exhausting your legs, shoulders, core (and even your forearms!) as you battle through each phase. Just follow Sklar’s form to the letter, and you’ll be performing movements that are extremely shoulder and back friendly. Follow his lead and your muscles will burn, but your joints won’t be screaming. If you’re over 40, this is a major key to staying healthy and fit for longer.

Throughout the circuit, focus on maintaining controlled movement through the shoulders, moving with a purpose. Avoid hazard flailing or arching your back to help swing the rope—you should focus on keeping your torso and legs as stationary as possible. Your legs will move during the circuit’s last exercise, but the shoulders are still running the show.

You’ll perform each exercise in the circuit for 5 seconds, so the entire round should take your 30 seconds. This should be all-out effort, pushing as hard as you can.

Once you’ve made it through, you get 30 seconds of rest and then you’re back at it for a total of 8 absolutely brutal rounds. When you reach the end of any workout and want to empty the tank to leave it all on the gym floor, grab two ends of a battle rope get after it.

If you’re interested in staying fit over 40, check out the Men’s Health Muscle After 40 program. You’ll get a whole set of routines designed for guys who have gotten older, but aren’t even close to throwing in the towel on their fitness.

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