Speed Ropes are NOT the answer.
Double Unders can be one of the most frustrating skills you will learn in CrossFit. Its just jumping rope, right? Then why is it so difficult? Why does something so seemingly simple make me want to quit so badly? Truth be told, it is anything but simple or easy. Double Unders require many things executed simultaneously. Aside from cardiovascular endurance and stamina which can be developed through training, we emphasize the skills needed more. Coordination, agility, balance and accuracy are all required and must be honed through deliberate and focused PRACTICE.
Through practice we can develop the skills we wish to pursue in the gym and life. Practice requires low heart rate and 100% of your attention. The Double Under is no different! So lets take a step back, breathe, and give yourself an opportunity for success rather than constant frustration and whip marks everywhere.
Here we have an excellent skill developer for the Double Under. This workout is called the Flight Simulator. The rep scheme is designed in a ladder format so you may climb to a number and then go back down to your starting number in a consistent pattern. You can scale to which ever rep scheme works for you at the time. That means you can both increase and decrease the skill level. Flight Simulator is quite literally for EVERYONE.
How do you start? Each number is it’s own set. You need to get each “set” unbroken before moving on to the next. If you mess up, you must restart that set so take as much rest as you need before you go. Having a clock running is a great way to track progress down the road, but in the beginning DO NOT do it for time. This will keep you from rushing and frustrating yourself. If you’re new to this, start with a scaled version like the example below. Over time, add another rep or two. Small additions will be small victories and that is how we conquer the skill of the Double Under.
So next time you find yourself frustrated with the Double Under, avoid looking up the newest fancy speed rope. Money cannot bridge the gap that consistent and deliberate practice will close. Save your money and put in the work.