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GNC ProJumper Digital Jump Rope and PowerUp Digital Resistance Band

The Bottom Line

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If you like gadgets and/or stats, these digital fitness products offer both in a portable package. They are simple to use and give you a little less to keep track of during a workout, so you can focus on your form (or your music) instead. The jump rope is easily adjustable, but the resistance band is very tight, so it's not good for beginners.

ProJumper Digital Jump Rope: Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Adjustable-length, sturdy nylon rope
  • Easy to grip handles
  • Tracks rotations, calories burned, and time elapsed
  • Can count calories or time down or up

Cons:

  • "Fat Function" mode tracks "amount of fat burnt," but unclear what units are used
  • Batteries not included

Guide Review - GNC ProJumper Digital Jump Rope

GNC ProJumper digital jump ropeGNC

If you've ever wondered how you could do a jump rope workout on a treadmill, so you'd know how many calories you just burned, you might want a digital jump rope. The GNC ProJumper has a sensor and screen built into one of its handles. Punch a few buttons and you can find out how many jumps you did (the jump rope tracks rotations), how many minutes you jumped, and how many calories you burned. It will even tell you how much fat you burned—but it's not clear how this is calculated.

It's tough to say how accurate the calorie counter is, although you can input your weight so the device can use that as a starting point. When I tested the jump rope, the rotation count confirmed my own count and so did the clock/timer. If you like to lose yourself in a workout and not have to keep track of things (that's what appeals to me about the Couch to 5K app), this gadget can help you.

Do you NEED a digital jump rope? No; you can easily count your own reps or use a clock, watch, or timer you already have. But if a little more data motivates you and improves your workout, then maybe this gadget will appeal. It could also be fun for kids to use, since they might have more trouble keeping track of their reps—or agreeing with their friends and siblings about how many jumps they really did.

PowerUp Digital Resistance Band: Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Sturdy rubber tubing and foam handles
  • Tracks reps, calories burned, and time elapsed
  • Battery included

Cons:

  • Band is short/tight
  • Can't count time or reps down like jump rope can

Guide Review - GNC PowerUp Resistance Band

GNC PowerUp digital resistance bandGNC

Like the jump rope, this resistance band has a sensor and a screen to track and show the number of reps you do, time elapsed, and number of calories burned. It's in a central piece connecting the two ends of the band together like a figure eight. The tracker doesn't allow you to enter or record your weight, though (which makes the calorie burn number questionable) and it can't be set to count down your reps or time like the jump rope can.

For me, the most challenging thing about this band was ... that it was too challenging for me. It is too short and tight for me to use in a lot of the strength training movements I would otherwise do with a resistance band. For example, if I stand in the center and try to hold an end of the band in each hand, I can't fully straighten up and bend my elbows to do a bicep curl. Obviously, whether this applies to you will vary depending on your size and fitness level. But I wish this band were adjustable, or came with a lighter tube that could be swapped in for the heavy one.

Again, similar to the jump rope: You don't NEED a resistance band that counts your reps. But if it bothers you to lose track of your own count, the PowerUp could help you. Or if you travel a lot and you'd like a band that does double-duty as a timer, the PowerUp could be a good option. It will take up much less room in your suitcase than a pair of shoes.

Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

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