double unders
Source: Wodshots

7 Simple Steps to RX Double Unders (DU)

Time to RX this tricky exercise...

Double Unders (DU) can be an incredibly frustrating exercise to RX with consistency. Sometimes you feel like you have them nailed, only to completely fail them during the next WOD. 

Sometimes they seem so daunting to even get one or two that it leaves us feeling distraught and beaten. 

This guide with info from WODprep will give you an excellent step by step plan to help you RX them every time. Learn from from WODprep and check out all their excellent courses.

Ben breaks down technique, progression and goal setting to give you a realistic and effective plan. It is split into the 7 steps below:

  • Step 1: Single unders. …
  • Step 2: Power jumping. …
  • Step 3: One double under. …
  • Step 4: One double under, with more spins. …
  • Step 5: Single under – double under. …
  • Step 6: Unbroken double unders. …
  • Step 7: 50 unbroken, every time.

Check out the video if you prefer watching to reading. 

7 Steps to RX Double Unders

The following advice is from WODprep. 

1. Single Unders

First is first. As a prerequisite, you have to first know how to do single unders.

2. Power Jumping

A key to mastering double under timing is learning the correct kind of jump. While this may seem obvious, it’s important. So step 2 is to do just that: jump. No rope, just your body.

Practice what I like to call the ‘power jump’ which is a higher jump than a regular single under jump. Power jumping also involves learning the ability to absorb the landing correctly, so that you can then easily rebound into the next jump.

3. “Big singles” and the First DU

This is when you’re actually jumping with a higher double under jump, but doing big, slow single unders – only spinning the rope one time under your feet.

After a few big singles, take a shot at your first double under attempt. Jump as high as you can, while spinning your rope quickly. Once you’re comfortable with hitting that first double under, work towards being able to hit first reps consistently. This does NOT mean stringing them together (yet), but instead just training your body for what it needs to do to hit the first rep of a double under.

DU

4. One Double Under DU, with more Spins

Alright, so you can hit one double under at this point. Now it’s time to work on jumping momentum. Do a single double under, and then try to keep the rope spinning. The goal here is to allow the rope to keep spinning so that you can also keep your momentum, and continue jumping.

5. Single Double Single Double etc

At this point you should be able to understand what the rope feels like to keep spinning in between your double under reps. With that in mind, let’s take a step closer to unbroken double unders. Work on minimizing the amount of singles between each double under – so instead of 5+ singles in between each double under like the step 4, your goal in this step is to find the rhythm of ‘single-double, single-double, single-double, etc.’

6. Unbroken DU

It’s time to take a stab at unbroken DU. I reference this often when coaching double unders to beginners: “You have to walk before you can run.”

In other words, working on unbroken double unders does NOT mean that you should immediately shoot for 10 in a row. Keep it simple, and instead start with a goal of two unbroken. Just two! You’ll quickly realize that there’s a big difference between landing and rebounding back into your second unbroken rep, compared to when you were rebounding during the single-double drill.

7. 50 Unbroken DU, Every Time

This is the final step in learning double unders – and one that can take a lot of practice and patience to finally get to. The final building block is to simply keep working on bigger and bigger sets of unbroken double unders. In my opinion, you’ve “made it” when you can always hit 50 reps unbroken – matter what.

Being able to move into this cadence comfortably means that you have the jump endurance, rope control, and jump height to start stringing double unders together. Woohoo!