Required Elements

This week on the blog, we will be discussing required elements. We have made some changes to the way both FISAC-IRSF and WJRF scored required elements. The Technical Congress believes that the purpose of required elements is to ensure that athletes display a variety of skills in their routines, in order to make them entertaining and dynamic for audiences.  Required elements also encourage athletes to become well-rounded freestyle athletes because they need to demonstrate that they can complete a number of different types of freestyle skills, rather than rely solely on power or multiples, for example. We feel that the FISAC-IRSF and WJRF rules didn’t fully promote these outcomes. We believe the FISAC-IRSF rule included too many required elements and we felt that this could limit an athlete’s ability to creatively put together an entertaining routine. In contrast, we think the WJRF rules didn’t place enough emphasis on required elements. We felt that only requiring athletes to perform one skill doesn’t adequately demonstrate that they have a basic ability in that element of the sport.

In the IJRU judging system, required elements will be counted by deduction judges. Deduction judges will also count mistakes, space, and time violations. For every required element an athlete has not completed, they will receive a deduction from the total raw score.

The difficulty level of all required elements will be awarded by the difficulty/content judges. Competitive athletes should be able to complete the required elements regardless of their skill level. This means that there will be no difficulty level associated with required elements. For example, a level 1 power skill will count as a required power element.

Single Rope Required Elements

  • 4 Different Multiples

    • These multiples can be double unders, triples, quads etc. In the former FISAC-IRSF rulebook, multiples needed to be completed in sets. In the IJRU rulebook, multiples do not need to be completed in a set, however, athletes can choose to perform all 4 multiples in a row. We do not want to restrict athletes by requiring a large number of sets, which may result in freestyle routines looking similar. Instead, athletes have the ability to choreograph their routine as they see fit, as long as they include a minimum of 4 multiple skills.

  • 4 Different Gymnastics/Power Skills

    • The athlete(s) can choose to perform 4 different gymnastics and/or power skills with their rope. Any combination is accepted. For instance, athletes could choose to do 1 gymnastics skill and 3 power skills, or 4 power skills and no gymnastics skills, in order to fulfil this required element. This allows the athletes a bit of freedom to choose skills and will help to ensure that skills are performed safely. We don’t want to see athletes perform gymnastics skills that they have not fully perfected in order to avoid a required element deduction. We feel that gymnastics and power skills both test strength and power and as a result are interchangeable. Because it has been determined that a difficulty level should not be associated with required elements, athletes do not need to pull the rope under themselves before landing power skills, but will need to jump/skip the rope after landing for the skills to be counted.

  • 4 Different Manipulations (Wraps/Releases)

    • The athletes are required to perform 4 different wraps and/or releases. Wraps and releases showcase an athlete’s ability to complete intricate rope manipulations. As a result, we feel as though both wraps and releases test a similar skillset. In order for a skill to count as a wrap, the rope must wrap and then unwrap. Similarly, in order for a release to count, the athlete(s) must release and then catch the rope. If an athlete releases a handle and then catches it with another body part, then wraps and unwraps the rope around a body part, and then catches the rope in their hand, this would count as 1 release and 1 wrap and the athlete would fulfil 2 of the manipulation elements in one sequence. Athletes do not need to jump/skip the rope during a wrap or release in order to fulfil the required element; instead, this will impact the difficulty level of the skill and will be recorded by the difficulty/content judges.

  • 4 Different Interactions

    • In pairs and team freestyle, interactions are required. When athletes interact with each other during pairs and team freestyle events, it makes these events more appealing to watch. Interactions also make pairs and team freestyle events different from an individual single rope routine and as a result, we want to encourage athletes to perform these skills. Interactions in single rope freestyle events include, but are not limited to, scoops, assisted flips, stacked power, switching handles, etc.  

Additional Information

  • In single rope pairs and team freestyle events, all the athletes must do the required element at the same time. For example, a scoop frog is only an interaction. It is not a power required element because all athletes aren't performing the power skill.

  • More than one required element can be completed in a single skill. For example, a double under frog/mule kick is a multiple required element and a power required element.

  • Athletes will not be awarded a required element skill if they are not holding the rope handles. For example, if an athlete puts the rope down and performs a gymnastics skill, that is not considered a jump rope skill and will not fulfil one of the gymnastics/power required elements. Athletes need to complete the skill while holding the rope and then jump the rope immediately after the skill in order for it to count.

Double Dutch Required Elements

  • 4 Different Gymnastics/Power Skills

    • The team can choose to perform 4 different gymnastics and/or power skills with the ropes. Any combination is accepted. For example, a team could do 3 gymnastics skills and only 1 power skill, or 4 power skills and no gymnastics skills in order to fulfil this required element. A power combination that contains a frog to split to push-up to crab includes 4 different power skills and would fulfil the required element.

  • 4 Different Turner Involvement Skills

    • In order to make double dutch freestyle more dynamic, turner involvement can raise the difficulty level and entertainment value of a routine. As a result, we want to encourage teams to include turner involvement. Turner involvement includes, but is not limited to, multiples, wheel, turning with one or both arms in a restricted position, jump-throughs, power/gymnastics skills while holding the ropes, etc.

  • 4 Different Interactions (Double Dutch Pair & Double Dutch Triad Freestyle)

    • We want to encourage athletes to complete athlete interactions during double dutch pairs and triad events because this makes the event more dynamic and also creates a significantly different routine than a double dutch singles freestyle. Athlete interactions include any skills completed while athletes make contact with each other, or move over/under or around each other. For example, a subway, assisted flip, leap frog, stacked power, linked arms etc would all count as skills that involve interactions. The athletes do not need to be performing the same skill in order for an interaction to take place. Switches are not considered interactions.

  • 4 Skills Performed in the Ropes

    • In all double dutch freestyle events, every athlete on the team needs to jump and turn at some point. This demonstrates that the athletes are well-rounded and creates a more dynamic and entertaining routine. In order to fulfil this required element, each individual on a team must complete 4 skills in the ropes. These 4 skills do not need to be completed in a row in order to count. For example, an athlete could perform 2 skills, then switch with a turner and later in the routine re-enter the ropes and perform 2 more skills.  

Additional Information

  • The required elements listed above do not need to be completed by each athlete on the team. For example, one athlete could complete all 4 of the gymnastics/power skills.

  • In double dutch pairs and triad, all jumpers do not need to be completing the same power/gymnastics skill in order to count a required element, but they all need to be completing a power/gymnastics skill simultaneously. For example, one athlete may do a push-up while another athlete does a frog over their feet, which would count as 1 power/gymnastics skill. Similarly, in triad, if two athletes do a front tuck and one athlete does a back tuck at the same time, this would count as 1 power/gymnastics skill. If one athlete does a push-up while the other athlete does a side straddle over their legs, this is not considered a power skill because both athletes are not completing a power skill. The only exception to this rule is assisted power/gymnastics. If one athlete assists another athlete during a power or gymnastics skill, this will count towards the required element. The reason for this is because the athlete assisting is still using strength and power to help complete the skill. For example, an assisted aerial would count as 1 power/gymnastics and 1 interaction by the deduction judges.

  • Skills that are performed outside of the ropes will not be counted towards required elements. For example, if an athlete performs a round-off outside of the ropes as a way to move across the floor, it will not be considered a gymnastics required element.

Community Commentary

We would like to thank everyone for sharing their thoughts and suggestions with the Technical Congress over the past few weeks and we would like to encourage you to continue reading, commenting, and sharing our weekly posts with those in the jump rope/rope skipping community. The majority of respondents to last week’s survey agreed with our definitions for each deduction, however, we did receive a few suggestions for alternative ways to define space/time violations, as well as mistakes. We will be taking this feedback into consideration as we continue to develop the rule book. Here are a few suggestions that we received:

Maintain two different types of mistakes, but instead of distinguishing them with time (i.e. two seconds), distinguish them by counting two beats.

In this case, we still believe that asking the judges to count two beats of music or two seconds of time is too subjective, leaves room for error, and the length of time between beats of different songs varies. Instead, we feel that if any noticeable mistake is made, a consistent amount should be deducted. Any bobbles could be deducted in the presentation score. This will help to make the judging of freestyle more consistent.

In speed, if an athlete is jumping on the boundary and one foot continually goes out of the box with every jump, don’t count the jumps, but also don’t continue to give a space violation every time their foot touches outside the boundary.

We will discuss this suggestion at an upcoming meeting as a group. We could change the wording to include that you cannot receive another space violation until you have completed a skill/jump within the set boundary. In other words, you must fully re-enter the boundary before a second space violation can be issued.

What happens if devices/programs read times on music files differently?

We feel this type of discrepancy can be avoided by using a consistent device and program to play the music. This is something we will consider further to ensure that there is consistency between athletes and we can adequately discern the length of each music track.

Could we adjust the definition of a miss/mistake to remove the word “unintentionally” and add more clarification of when the rope(s) could stop and not be considered a miss instead? Asking judges to read the intent of an athlete could very likely result in variance of how judges score misses and introduce subjectivity, which I believe you are rightly trying to avoid. I have discussed this with several athletes and judges and maybe we could build off a definition something like the following: “A mistake/miss is defined as any of the following:

  • any time a rope stops, unless an athlete is wrapping the rope, changing the direction of the rope, trapping the rope on a body part, and/or catching the rope in a pose

  • if an athlete attempts to grasp the rope and misses catching any part of the rope during a release

  • if a rope is pulled out of an athlete’s hand during a skill because the rope caught on an athlete’s body” (the implication for the rope being pulled out of the athlete’s hand is that they need to clearly release/let go of the rope for a miss to not be counted, rather than it accidentally catching on their body and being pulled out of their hand)

Are there other examples we can think of where it would not be a miss to stop the rope?

This is something the Technical Congress will need to discuss further before we can fully respond. We agree that a mistake needs to be clearly defined and will take this wording into consideration. At this point, we would be interested in hearing other feedback from the community regarding the wording of this definition. Is there anything that could be added to this definition that would help judges adequately identify a mistake?

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Freestyle Deductions

This week on the blog, we will be discussing a variety of different freestyle deductions, including mistakes, required elements, space, and time violations. This post will define each category and why we think a deduction should be made when these occurs. We will also discuss which judges will watch for deductions and why. As usual, if you have any comments, questions, or suggestions, please fill out the survey at the end of the post so we can engage with your feedback next week!

Deduction Judges

In the IJRU judging system, deduction judges will count mistakes, required elements, space, and time violations. The reason for creating a separate panel of deduction judges is to divide up the tasks each judge is asked to perform, so that each judge (deduction, difficulty/content, and presentation) can focus on less tasks at a time and can have a better opportunity to produce more accurate scores.

Mistakes

In both FISAC-IRSF and WJRF, mistakes were divided into two categories: major mistakes and minor mistakes. A major mistake was defined by both organizations as any mistake that took longer than two seconds to recover. A minor mistake was any mistake that took less than two seconds to recover. Major mistakes resulted in a larger deduction than minor mistakes. The IJRU Technical Congress has decided to define mistakes differently. Asking judges to count 2 seconds in order to determine the type of mistake leaves room for error and/or variance between judges. Major mistakes can result in a significant deduction for an athlete and we don’t believe identifying a mistake should be subjective in any way. Instead, we have decided to only identify one type of mistake and this will receive a single and consistent deduction. The difference between a short and long recovery time will be accounted for by the presentation judges, because a longer mistake will detract more from the overall performance of a routine.

A mistake is defined as any time the rope unintentionally stops. If an athlete drops a handle or misses catching the handle during a release, this is defined as a miss. A miss is not counted for a bobble, where the rope catches on the body, but the athlete is still able to complete the jump. Instead, this will be accounted for by presentation judges.

Space Violations

A space violation in freestyle will be given each time part of the athlete’s body touches the floor outside of the competition area. This means that an athlete could receive multiple space violations in a single event trial.  The arc of the rope can exit the competition area without causing a space violation. The reason for this distinction is to make it easy for the judges to determine when a space violation has occurred. The location of the judging panel makes it difficult to fully determine if a rope crosses a boundary. For example, it may be difficult to tell if an athlete’s rope has crossed the back boundary if you are seated at a judging panel at the front of the competition floor. In order to remove this subjectivity, we decided to make a space violation easier to detect. Also, no competition area will border another competition area. This means that a rope crossing the boundary has almost no chance of interfering with another competitor. Similarly, if an athlete’s arm waves outside of the competition area or their leg is kicked out of the area, they will not receive a space violation. The body part actually needs to touch the ground outside of the boundary for a space violation to be given. If part of an athlete’s hand or part of an athlete’s foot crosses the boundary and touches the floor, a space violation will be deducted.  For example, if half of an athlete’s hand is outside the boundary during a frog, this is considered a space violation.

When an athlete is outside of the competition area, no skills will be judged until the athlete re-enters the competition boundaries. In team events, a space violation is awarded each time any athlete on the team exits the competition boundary. This means that if one athlete is out of the boundary and then another athlete on the team exits the boundary, two space violations will be deducted at the same time.

The purpose of creating competition boundaries and penalizing athletes for space violations is to ensure that each athlete performs their events in the same environment. Athletes are being asked to create a routine within a standardized space, so in order to treat each athlete equally, deductions will  made each time an athlete leaves the space.

Space violations will result in the same penalty as one mistake. This will be deducted from the raw score. The exact number deducted for misses and space violations has not been determined.

Time Violations

The technical congress has decided to make some changes to the way that freestyle events are timed. The event call outs can detract from the overall performance and we would like to work towards creating an atmosphere similar to competitive figure skating. During figure skating programs, music is played and the routine lengths are standardized and so well-choreographed that no time signals are necessary. In order to move towards this goal, we have decided to remove the minimum time for freestyle routines at the IJRU World Championship level. In our proposed system, if an athlete completes a routine that is under 45 seconds in length, it will be very difficult for them to perform enough skills to reach a score higher than an athlete who performs a routine that is 75 seconds long, especially at a world level. As a result, we don’t believe as though it is necessary to set a minimum time requirement. This will also allow us to remove time call-outs midway through the routine, which can detract from the overall performance and professionalism of the sport.

That being said, athletes can still receive a time violation in freestyle events by continuing to perform after the maximum time limit of 75 seconds. All athletes will be required to submit a music file that does not exceed 75 seconds in length. This way, if an athlete continues to perform after their music has stopped, a time violation will be awarded. The music track should act as the time track in all freestyle routines. If a music track is longer than 75 seconds and the athlete continues to perform after 75 seconds, this will also result in a time violation. It will be up the athletes and coaches to ensure that all music tracks do not exceed 75 seconds.

A time violation can also be awarded for a false start during a freestyle routine. An example would be if an athlete begins to move to perform their routine before the music starts. Because the music track is acting as the timing track, any movement prior to the music will be considered a false start and the athlete will receive a time violation deduction. All time violations will be awarded the same deduction as one mistake.

This rule may not apply to the Youth or Open tournaments, because routine lengths and music requirements may be different. We are still in the process of developing the Youth and Open tournament rules.

Required Elements

Next week on the blog, we will be diving into the specific details surrounding required elements, but today we will briefly introduce the topic and discuss how they will be assessed by the deduction judges. Required elements are used to ensure that routines are dynamic and they also encourage athletes to become well-rounded freestyle jumpers. Essentially, athletes will be required to perform a certain number of multiples, power/gymnastics skills, rope manipulations, partner interactions, and turner involvement skills. The required elements will vary slightly depending on the event. For each required element that is not successfully completed during a routine the athlete(s) will receive a deduction from their raw score. FISAC-IRSF awarded points each time a required element was completed, in addition to the difficulty and presentation of the skill. We believe that since these skills already receive points to related to their difficulty level and how well they are performed, required elements should not earn additional points. Instead, failure to complete a required element will result in a deduction from the total raw score. The exact amount that will be deducted has not been determined at this point.

Community Commentary

If a team of 5 enters the Single Rope Team Overall category and nominates 2 team members to compete in the Single Rope Pairs Double Unders and/or Single Rope Pairs Freestyle - can 2 of the remaining 3 team members compete in either/both of those events individually?

Yes. If there are members of a team not competing in a specific event for their team (ie Single Rope Pairs Freestyle, Single Rope Pairs Double Unders 2x30, Double Dutch Singles Freestyle, Double Dutch Speed 1x60), they can compete in that individual event as long as they qualified. Only those entered into the overall category will impact the placement of the overall teams. This means the placements of event specialists will be removed from the field in order to tabulate the overall champions.

We have received a lot of positive feedback in relation to the event selection for the 2020 IJRU Wold Championships that were announced a few weeks ago. That being said, we have received some concerns, primarily in relation to the Triple Under event being included in the Individual Overall category. The concern is that this event is “inherently harmful for the athletes” and that we shouldn’t be asking athletes to compete to “a state of complete exhaustion.”

The Technical Congress is aware that Triple Unders used to be part of the Masters overall event in previous FISAC-IRSF tournaments and was removed as a result of complaints from some coaches, athletes, and parents that the event was harmful to the body and put unnecessary stress on the athlete’s joints. We take the health and safety of all athletes very seriously and are in the process of looking into medical studies that have been conducted specifically on the Triple Under event in order to help guide our decision making. One particular study focuses on the issue of incontinence. We also recommended to the IJRU Board of Directors that they study the potential health/safety issues associated with all events, not just Triple Unders. We believe that it is important that we gather empirical data to help make these decisions, rather than rely solely on anecdotal information. We do not have conclusive data to show that the Triple Under event causes more injuries than any other event in the sport of jump rope/rope skipping. Eventually, we would like the IJRU to create a database that records all jump rope related injuries. This will allow us to see when/how our athletes are being injured and will help the organization develop solutions and educational materials that can be shared with athletes and coaches. 

It is also important to note, that some athletes and countries have continued to compete the triple under event. With proper training and conditioning, some of the potential risks associated with this event, and others, can be avoided. For example, it is important that athletes competing at a high level engage in cross-training and weight training in order to develop strong enough muscles to support their joints. This is something the IJRU could help educate coaches and athletes around.

The Technical Congress also believes that many sports test athletes to the point of exhaustion. For example, running a marathon is meant to test the limits of human endurance. Our athletes already compete to a state of exhaustion in most events. In other sports, athletes are tested to their limits. For example, weight lifting, high jump, and a number of track events ask athletes to continue until they can’t go any further. We don’t believe as though the Triple Under event is any different from other sporting events. Pushing the limits of human capability is one aspect of competitive sports, and we don’t think this alone is a legitimate reason to remove the Triple Under event from the overall category.

Finally, it is important to remember that the events that have been announced are only for those competing in the World Championships. We have not announced events for the Youth or Open tournaments. In order to take into consideration long term athlete development, we may modify some events (i.e. length, skill) in order to help encourage healthy physical development.

Until next week,
The IJRU Technical Congress

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Elements of a Winning Routine

The Technical Congress has decided to take a funnel approach to the construction of the IJRU rule set. This means we are starting our conversation in broad terms. Each individual decision we make will be based off our larger vision and help guide the development of specific rules. In order to facilitate this approach, we began our discussion in Norway with a conversation about the specific components of a winning routine. During this conversation we asked the following questions: What makes a routine enjoyable to watch? What elements should be rewarded? What should cause deductions? This big picture conversation has helped us to narrow our focus and categorize the different elements of a winning freestyle routine, which will in turn help guide the creation of the rule set and judging system. The list of elements below have been identified by the Technical Congress as essential to a winning routine. In this post, we will list each element and provide some background information about why it was selected. We feel that a winning routine should be:

  • Varied (in both style and skill)

    • The Technical Congress feels that routines should be entertaining to watch. One way to do this is by encouraging athletes to avoid repetition and create routines that incorporate a variety of different elements (i.e. multiples, power/gymnastics, rope manipulations, partner interactions, turner involvement, etc.).

  • Original (something unique and different)

    • We would like athletes to continue to create new and exciting skills that push the sport forward. This can be done by awarding originality through the judging system.

  • Performed well under stress (in competition and with an audience)

    • To be an elite athlete, it is important that individuals can perform at their top level under pressure and in front of an audience. Usually the difference between champions and the rest of the field is being able to hit a routine in competition when it counts. Therefore, routines that are performed well and with few errors should be rewarded in the judging system.

  • Technical (athletes should use proper form)

    • A routine that is enjoyable to watch is often one that is performed well. Not only does the athlete include difficult skills and creative elements, but also excellent technique and form. This can vary depending on the athlete’s style. An elite athlete’s technical ability should almost make a routine appear easy. This includes, but is not limited to good posture, pointed toes, straight lines, etc.

  • Choreographed to music

    • Music, when used properly, can raise the overall performance of a routine making it more entertaining. As such, the music shouldn’t exist as background noise, but should be an integral part of the performance, with the athlete fully committed to the choreography. Athletes should use the music to guide their choreography by hitting accents, jumping to the beat, and/or communicating an overall mood or emotion.

  • Difficult (include many difficult, but not dangerous skills)

    • A winning routine should also be packed with difficult skills. We feel an individual should not be able to win by choreographing and performing an easy and well-executed routine. Therefore, difficulty should be substantially rewarded. Although we want to encourage athletes to attempt difficult skills that push the boundaries of athleticism, we also want to keep athletes safe. Athletes should not be encouraged to include difficult or dangerous skills in their freestyle routines, unless the skills have been perfected. Attempting skills for which the athletes are unprepared can lead to injury. This is something that the Technical Congress needs to explore further, but it could be addressed through the education and training of jump rope/rope skipping coaches and/or through the judging system.

  • Clean (few mistakes, reward cleanliness)

    • If an athlete’s routine includes a significant number of mistakes, we feel this detracts from the performance. Therefore, mistakes should result in some form of deduction from the score. This will encourage athletes to train their routines to perfection. That being said, we also want athletes to attempt difficult skills in competition in order to raise the “wow factor” of the sport. A balance will need to be met between the ways in which mistake deductions are weighted against the difficulty level of the routine. 

  • Entertaining (routines should be fun to watch even for those not in the sport)

    • In order to grow the sport by attracting new members and reaching new audiences, routines need to be entertaining to watch for those both inside and outside of the sport. We want to find a way to encourage our athletes to create entertaining routines using a combination of difficult and original skills, promoting the use of music and choreography, and rewarding technique, style, and overall performance abilities.

  • Athletic (display athleticism and stamina)

    • The IJRU is committed to getting jump rope/rope skipping recognized as an official sport by all member countries. In order to promote jump rope/rope skipping as a sport, we need to be able to demonstrate the raw athleticism and stamina that is necessary to be successful at a world level. Our sport incorporates many of the fundamental skills of sport, including strength, agility, balance, coordination, and speed. The events that we compete at the world level should highlight these skills.

  • Not too long and not too short

    • We can address the length of routines directly in the rule set by setting a maximum time limit. The Technical Congress wants to make sure that the length of the routine doesn’t inhibit athletes from continuing to perform difficult and high energy elements throughout. If the time limit is too long, the end of the routine could appear strained or filled with easy tricks. One way this could be addressed is by ensuring that the time limit isn’t too long and/or rewarding skills performed at the end of a routine with a higher difficulty score. We also don’t want the time limit to be too short because this may detract from an athlete’s ability to include entertaining choreography and creative elements. A balance will need to be reached.

  • Scored accurately (ability to differentiate skills at all levels and between routines)

    • The Technical Congress identified difficulty as a key component of a winning routine. In order for difficulty to be consistently and correctly rewarded by the judges, it needs to be relatively easy to differentiate between the different difficulty levels. We are committed to creating a difficulty judging system that is easy to teach and implement. This can be further supported through the use of technology and digital tools. Limiting the amount of human error in our judging procedure will help to ensure that difficulty is rewarded accurately throughout an event.

  • A demonstration of all types of skills with no weakness in any area

    • A winning routine should not rely too heavy on any one element. For example, a routine that is comprised solely of a variety of multiples will become boring to watch as a result of the repetition in movement. We can address this issue by including required elements in the judging system.

Many of the elements of a winning routine identified above overlap in significant ways. After reading through this list, it becomes quite apparent that a winning routine must be put together in a creative way, performed and executed at a high level using proper technique, and there needs to be a variety of difficult and original skills. Over the next few months, as we build the IJRU ruleset and judging system, we will make sure that we are working towards rewarding routines that include what we have identified as the winning elements. Please take a few minutes to fill out the survey below and let us know what you think. Have we missed anything? Are some of these elements more important than other? We look forward to reading your feedback and answering your questions.

Community Commentary

Last week, we announced the events that will be competed at the IJRU World Championships in 2020. So far, we have received a few questions that we wanted to address.

Will teams in the overall categories continue to be comprised of 4-5 people?

The Technical Congress discussed this at length in Norway and took into consideration a number of different jump rope/rope skipping systems from around the world. It has been decided that teams can consist of anywhere from 4 to 6 people. This is slightly different than the system currently used by both FISAC-IRSF and WJRF. Adding the option for another athlete on a team will make the sport more inclusive globally.

How will the single rope events be weighted in the individual overall category? Is freestyle equally weighted to the speed events? Triple unders as well?

This is not something that the Technical Congress has finalized at this point. Does anyone have suggestions or thoughts around weighting in the individual overall category? We would be happy to engage with community feedback as we discuss this and make our final decision.

Until next week,
The IJRU Technical Congress

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Let the Training Begin…

This week on the blog, we are excited to announce and discuss the events that have been selected and approved for the 2020 IJRU World Championship. In this post, we will list all of the events and provide some additional information behind the decision-making process. There are a few new events and some changes to both the former FISAC-IRSF and WJRF competition events and overall category structure. We feel these changes require some additional explanation, so let’s jump in!

Individual Events and Individual Overall

  • Single Rope Speed, 1x30

  • Single Rope Speed, 1x180

  • Single Rope Triple Unders (no time limit)

  • Single Rope Freestyle

Each event listed above can be competed on its own or as part of the Individual Overall competition. All of these individual events were previously competed at FISAC-IRSF and WJRF tournaments, however, the Triple Under event was not included in the overall competition. We feel that the major components of single rope that should be tested in an overall category are: speed, endurance, power, and freestyle. The Triple Under event tests the power and endurance components of single rope in a significantly different way than any of the other events, and so we feel it should be included in the overall category.

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It is important to note that these events have only been selected for the 2020 World Championship and will not necessarily apply to the Youth tournament. We have not yet finalized those events, so stay tuned. Triple Unders will likely not be included at the Youth tournament.

Single Rope Team Events and Single Rope Team Overall

  • Single Rope Speed Relay, 4x30

  • Single Rope Pairs Double Unders, 2x30

  • Single Rope Pairs Freestyle

  • Single Rope Team Freestyle

All Single Rope team events listed above can be competed individually or as part of the Single Rope Team Overall and/or the All-Around Competition. The Technical Congress wanted to make sure that each overall category evenly tested all components of the sport. As a result, we believe it is important that there are an equal number of speed and freestyle events. Single Rope Speed Relay, 4x30 was competed at both FISAC-IRSF and WJRF competitions and it was decided that this event should remain. We added Single Rope Pairs Double Unders to the overall category in order to make sure we had an equal number of speed and freestyle events. We also feel that it was important to keep double unders in the sport. Many recreational participants know about double unders and it has become an important part of CrossFit and gym culture. By including a double under event, we hope to appeal to a wider audience. Single Rope Pairs Freestyle and Team Freestyle were competed at FISAC-IRSF and WJRF competitions and these events test a team’s ability to perform freestyle skills at a high level and in a synchronized fashion. Therefore, we feel they should remain in the sport.

Double Dutch Team Events and Double Dutch Team Overall

  • Double Dutch Speed Relay, 4x30

  • Double Dutch Speed, 1x60

  • Double Dutch Singles Freestyle

  • Double Dutch Pairs Freestyle

All of the events listed above can be competed individually or as part of the Double Dutch Team Overall and/or All-Around Competition. You will notice that both double dutch speed events are new to the sport. There were formerly three double dutch speed events competed at the international level: 2 for WJRF and 1 for FISAC-IRSF. Due to time and space constraints, we were unable to keep all of the events. As such, we needed to limit the number to two in order to create an equal weight of freestyle and speed in the Double Dutch Overall category. We looked at what skills each former speed event (4x45, 3x40, and 2x60) tested and wanted to make sure that the two events we selected adequately tested each of those skills. We feel that a relay-style event that asks each athlete on a team to demonstrate both jumping and turning skills is essential. We also wanted to make sure that we included a double dutch speed event that is competed by four individuals on a team. As a result, we decided to combine elements of the previous 4x45 and 3x40 events to create the new 4x30 event. This new event focuses on creating well-rounded athletes and emphasizes speed, because of the short length of time each athlete is jumping. For the second double dutch speed event, we wanted to test something slightly different. We liked that in the former 2x60 event, athletes were able to specialize slightly (not everyone needed to jump and turn), and there was more of an emphasis on endurance. The new 1x60 event fulfills both of these aims and reduces the overall time necessary to compete the event. We are really excited about both new double dutch speed events and can’t wait to see them on the competition floor in 2020! The two double dutch freestyle events selected, DD Singles Freestyle and DD Pairs Freestyle, were both competed at WJRF and FISAC-IRSF tournaments and we feel that they should continue at IJRU tournaments.

The DDC competition, as it was competed under WJRF, will run under the Japan Double Dutch Association rules alongside the IJRU 2020 Championship.

Additional Events

The Technical Congress also wants to continue to promote innovation and diversity in our sport. As a result, we decided to include Pairs Wheel Freestyle and Double Dutch Triad Freestyle. These are two events that were competed at the WJRF tournament and have become favourites among athletes. We decided that these events would only be competed if the time and space allowed.

Why are there so many overall categories?

We wanted to make sure that our overall categories took into consideration the unique abilities of our global community. As a result, we chose to include separate Single Rope and Double Dutch Team Overall categories. This will allow members to specialize in specific disciplines, which we feel will help to grow the sport and push the level of competition forward.

That being said, we also wanted to give teams an opportunity to focus on developing well-rounded athletes that excel in all disciplines and components of the sport. As a result, we included an All-Around Competition that combines all of the events from the SR Overall and DD Overall categories. Any team that competes at the 2020 World Championship in both the Single Rope Team Overall and Double Dutch Team Overall with the same group of athletes will automatically be entered in the All-Around Competition. Each event will only be competed once by a team, and they will be entered into the individual event category, the SR or DD Overall, and the All-Around.

What will happen to the events that have been removed?

The Technical Congress is in the process of making a list of all the events that have been competed internationally in the sport of jump rope/rope skipping in the past. As we look into the future, we see our sport growing to a point where there may be separate Speed, Freestyle, Single Rope, or Double Dutch competitions. When this happens, we can reintroduce some of these events. The sport of jump rope/rope skipping, like all sports, will continue to evolve and change over time. The events that have been announced today are not permanent and we will continue to assess each event, and work with our community and stakeholders to grow the sport and push the boundaries of athletic ability.

If you have any questions, comments, or feedback that you would like to share with the Technical Congress, please fill out the survey below. Each week, we will read through the feedback and pull out a few common topics to address in our next blog post. We look forward to hearing from you!

See you next Wednesday,
The IJRU Technical Congress

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Welcome to the IJRU Technical Congress Blog!

The Technical Congress has been tasked with creating a number of recommendations regarding the events, competition structure, rules, judging, and scoring systems that will be used at IJRU tournaments going forward. We are committed to making recommendations that benefit all athletes and help to grow the sport of jump rope/rope skipping at the local and international level. One way we hope to fulfill that goal is by creating a space where we can share our decisions, ideas, and rationale in an open and public platform. We also want to encourage the global jump rope/rope skipping community to provide us with feedback, ask questions, and offer suggestions.

To meet this aim, the Technical Congress has decided to publish a weekly blog that will include a section for feedback. Each week, the blog will highlight an important topic in relation to the sport and we will also try to address any common questions or concerns from the feedback we received the previous week. If you are interested in following along, please come back and read our posts each Wednesday!

Until next week, we’ll see you in the gym!
IJRU Tech Congress