Expert Dave Newman dissects the double-under and offers tips that transfer over to triple-unders.
On the surface, the double-under is simple. Grab a jump rope and let it pass under your feet twice each time you jump.
When double-unders go well, they are a thing of beauty. The rope is a blur as the athlete bounds up and down, relaxed and composed, the calm in the eye of a storm.
When double-unders fall apart, it’s painful to watch—and experience. The rope whips the athlete in the legs. The rope catches under the athlete’s feet. The hands and body seem to move at cross purposes. The athlete gets increasingly frustrated, and the situation gets worse. The scenario usually ends with a rope getting thrown across the gym. Often, there are tears.
The movement seems simple, but so much can go wrong. Double-unders require perfect timing and consistency. The athlete must stay relaxed and fluid, which is not easy when the clock is counting down and the stupid rope is whipping you.
Dave Newman has witnessed every type of double-under mistake. With his team, the RX Smart Gear owner and double-under expert leads workshops across the country. In an effort to help people identify their mistakes and learn double-unders quickly and smoothly, Newman has broken the movement into three primary components: bounding, rotational mechanics and timing. He’s created drills to work on each of the components and cues to fix the most common double-under errors.
With a little help, your double-unders will become a thing of beauty, and you can then move on to the next frontier: triple-unders.