Out of the last three annual National Collegiate Jump Rope Association Summit competitions, UNC's Carolina Jump Rope Club notched consecutive wins in 2020 and 2021.
Club members have also jumped rope at the UNC basketball halftime performance and at the locally-hosted National Collegiate Jump Rope Association Summit in previous years.
This club is an opportunity for people of all experience levels to come together under the shared passion of jump rope, said Vice President Erin Schlachter.
The club is the perfect outlet to blow off steam, share laughs and be creative. Founded in 2017, the group offers performances, competitions and community service-oriented jump rope for members, she said.
“What's really cool is that a lot of people start jumping in college," Schlachter said. "Our team is about two-thirds members who have never jumped before coming to UNC.”
Although there are about 20 members on the team, Schlachter estimated that only four members have prior experience within the sport. She herself began jumping at age nine.
Schlachter said there are misconceptions that the club is only for experienced jump ropers or younger students.
“One of our jumpers is getting his PhD, not just for freshmen, it's not just for undergrads,” she said.
Junior and Social Media Chairperson Carter Broome said his favorite memory of being on the team is watching new members of the club travel so far in their skill development.
During his freshman year, he recalls that there were many people who had no jump roping experience.
"By the end of the year, you couldn't really tell a big difference between those who had jumped before and those who hadn't," Broome said.
Event Chairperson Nathan Koch also said he enjoys performing in front of an audience.
“Anytime you have a good crowd, it’s good vibes and good energy," Koch said. "You’re feeding each other — it’s so much fun.”
Junior and Service Chairperson Sarah Paschal said that the club helps provide her with an escape from the academic aspect of college.
“I just absolutely love being able to come (to practice) twice a week," Paschal said. "And just for an hour or two where I can put aside all my schoolwork and just hang out, both exercise and just socialize with some great people.”
Broome said that schools such as the University of Notre Dame, Stanford University and Ohio State University also have great programs for jump rope. He said many schools have started their own jump rope teams recently, but jump rope is still a small and unknown competitive sport.
Schlachter said some of the best people she has ever met have been through jump rope.
“Jump rope is such a community," Schlachter said. "I always tell people that the greatest people in my life are people in jump rope.”
All UNC students are welcome to join the Carolina Jump Rope Club, Broome said.
He said a lot of people's hesitancies to try jump rope might come from not knowing what they're getting themselves into, or worrying that they won't be good enough.
"And I think to those comments, I would just say, you know, of course, you'll never know until you try it," Broome said.
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