Hannah Winston, wtop.com
WASHINGTON -- Meghan Major has only been jumping rope for two years, but she already knows that she wants to be a coach when she gets older.
"If you're a coach, you get to meet new little kids and we'll just say, ‘We used to be one of you,'" she said.
Major, 9, is one of hundreds of competitors at the World Jump Rope Championships held July 2, 3 and 4 at the Charles E. Smith Center at George Washington University
Shaun Hamilton, an event coordinator, said the organization was started last year by a group of dedicated jumpers and former jumpers trying to start something new.
He said the group formed because there are many competitions that cater to very specific styles of jump rope. With this group, all types of styles are allowed and individuals from all around the world can compete.
"At the end of the day, we want to unify the world of jump rope," he said.
For the inaugural event, Hamilton said that there are more than 320 competitors including athletes from states like Washington and Texas, and even across the world from Tanzania to Hungary. He said roughly 13 different countries are represented at the competition.
Allison Lord is a judge at the competition and a former jump rope competitor. She knows how difficult it is to train and compete.
"It's hard as a judge to be able to look at a little 7-year-old and you want to give them the highest score," she said.
The judging system is made to be fair, she says. Competitors are split up based on skill level.
The first day of competition included younger jump ropers with speed and endurance routines. Sunday, the competition will have seasoned jumpers who will step up the difficulty by adding dance and crowd interaction into their routines.
Andrew Pang has been jumping for 22 years. He said he's really excited for the Sunday event because his team, Heart and Soul from Baton Rouge, La., is doing something new. His team has never done a dance routine before, but decided they should give it a try.
"We schemed on what the other teams were bringing to the table," Pang said. "And we're like, ‘We got to dance.'"
On the final day, winners from the first two days compete one more time for a showcase.
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