Make a Professional Skipping Rope

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Skipping rope is obviously fun!

Skipping rope is obviously fun!

Skipping rope, or jumping rope is both fun and healthy. Making a rope that can be well maintained can reduce the cost and increase the endurance of your rope.

___With these instructions you can make a plastic linked skipping rope that can last you a lifetime. Any plastic polyethylene links that are worn out can be easily and inexpensively replaced. The handles are simple loops of rope that are easily looped round the hand, so the rope cannot be accidentally dropped or “let go” while skipping. A 25′ community skipping rope should cost around $8.50CAD.

1) Any diamond braided polypropylene rope is best. We purchased 5/32″ thick, with a working load of 50 lbs. A 75′ rope should cost about $5. A thinner line can be used. Polypropylene will not absorb water and will not rot, giving you a long lasting rope. Ropes can come in many colours, such as white, purple, yellow, green, orange, pink, and red. White can get dirty, so be colourful. Polypropylene is hypoallergenic.

2) Polyethylene tubing, 3/8″ outside 1/4″ inside diameter in white. This should cost about $0.20/ft. Polyethylene tubing is used for fish tanks or for other general uses and is widely available. For a 25′ community rope, start with 18′ of tubing, leaving some rope for loop handles and room for the tubing to move so that you can easily fold up the rope to carry it. For an individual rope measure out your rope and subtract 2′ to give you how much tubing to purchase. Polyethylene is hypoallergenic.

Note: For a 25′ community rope, we found that 18′ of polyethylene tubing is too heavy to turn, so we have taken out links and now only use 14′ of tubing. You can fine tune your rope until you are satisfied.

Length: A community rope can be 25′ long, sufficient for about 6 jumpers or 10 squished. Double Dutch ropes require two such ropes. Proper length for an individual rope should be armpit to ground to other armpit.

1. Cut rope to length: Get an adult to help you. You can either use a scissors to cut your rope or using a soldering iron. A soldering iron will both cut and heat seal the ends, preventing fraying. If you use scissors then use a cigarette lighter or lit candle to heat seal the end. Gently heat the end of the rope and slowly singe the rope until it slowly melts. Do not heat seal too quickly or your rope will catch on fire. This may be good for encouraging fast skipping but is not good for your rope (just kidding). Patient heat sealing will give you a better result. Not heat sealing cut ends will eventually unbraid and fray the rope, weakening it.

2. Cut polyethylene tubing into 1.5″ segments. Get an adult to do this. Use a cutting board, a metal measuring tape, and a Chinese cleaver. Measure 1.5″ in length, lock the measuring tape in at this length. Measure out 1.5″ of tubing against the measuring tape, then cut the tubing using the cleaver. Do not cut the measuring tape or your fingers. Try to cut the lengths of plastic with a 90 degree or perpendicular cut. If you are prone to cutting yourself, purchase red coloured rope and have adhesive bandaids on hand.

3. Heat seal the rope end, knot one end of the rope, and make a loop handle. From the other end, thread all cut tubing sections onto the rope. Make another loop handle, and you’re done. You can add two extra knots where the tubing ends on the rope to prevent excessive movement of the tubing.

4. Test by “Skip”ping.

Professional skipping rope with polyethylene links

Professional skipping rope using diamond braided polypropylene rope with polyethylene links. Note heat sealed rope and 1.5 inch polyethylene links.

Cost: A 25′ community rope should cost around $8.50CAD. Should you wear out sections of polyethylene, these can be removed and cheaply replaced. Your skipping rope can last you a lifetime.

1 thought on “Make a Professional Skipping Rope

  1. David Ing

    I have my own polypropelene skipping rope, and have never seen the polyethelene links before. I’ve noticed that I like a rope a bit heavier than the thin rope purchased in stores.

    I didn’t realize that skipping rope was so complicated.

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