Chinese jump rope is a type of game that is more commonly referred to as jumpsies or French skipping. It’s fairly easy to pick up and can have infinite variations for anyone to make up.
Starting the game with a two holders holding each end, you choose a pattern to follow while jumping. The first thing you need to do is to find a rope. The rope has to go around your ankles so the appropriate and comfortable option is a rubber type of looped rope. There are certain types of children’s toys and such that sell rubber loops or parts of toys that can be made to use for these purposes. You can also use a 9 foot elastic band as a rope, it works the same way, just tie the end into loops.
You need at the very least three people to play the game. You can, of course, play with as many people as you like, but three is the minimum amount required. It takes two people to hold the rope (holders) and one of you can be a jumper. Stretch the rope out so that it looks as if it’s a widened circle. Leave enough room for each person to jump in and out of the circle.
The holders need to be standing apart from each other but facing one another with the rope or rubber tied around the back of each of their ankles. A good representation about how far the two holders should stand up is to think of the front seat of a car that has three seats, something like the front of a pick-up truck. There needs to be enough room for the third person to come in and move around.
How to play the game
The game consists of any basic combinations of jumps or moves that can come to your mind. The basic movement concept is:
- The jumper puts themselves inside the rope.
- The Jumper lands outside of the rope, either to the right or the left.
- The jumper’s right foot lands outside of the rope, while the left foot lands inside.
- The jumper’s left foot lands outside of the rope, while the right foot lands outside.
After these basic steps, you can begin to incorporate any number of different spins or half jumps to place your feet differently. During the game, the holders will call out several patterns for the jumper to follow. Prior to playing the game, you and the holders need to come up with patterns to follow. However, it is more fun to come up with the patterns in the moment. For the holders, the game is to stand there holding the rope on their ankles, and shout out the pattern for the jumper to follow. If the jumper does it correctly, the holders can speed it up, or twist it around to make it more difficult.
Chinese jump rope is normally played on cement or a black top, however, it is more safe to play on grass or a wrestling mat of sorts. Chinese jump rope can be exhausting so remember to take breaks and enjoy yourself.