Double-unders — you either love them or hate them. But no matter how you feel about them, they’re an awesome movement to incorporate into your workouts. Double-unders can improve your coordination, accuracy, power, endurance, and body control, just to name a few. If you’re someone who finds themselves with legs covered in whip marks from the rope after spending some time attempting DUs, this one is for you. Below you will find the most common mistakes people make with double-unders and how you can fix them to become a pro at dubs (and maybe even start working on triple-unders!).

The Most Common Mistakes in Double-Unders

1. Complicating the Jump

First, let’s analyze the jump. There are a few mistakes you can make here. Often, people will focus too much on the jump and not enough on their wrist and shoulder movement. Focusing too much on the jump can cause one to pike legs forward, kick legs behind, or jump too high.

If you’re piking during your jump (legs coming out in front of you), it could be a sign that you need a longer rope. If you’re jumping too high or kicking your legs behind you, you’ll find yourself getting tired way faster than you should be.

How to Fix it

When performing double-unders, you want to keep the same jump height as your single-unders. Don’t do more work than you need to in order to let the rope pass under your feet twice. Push off the ground with your toes and focus on keeping your toes pointed down. Keep your body nice and straight (legs right underneath torso).

The rest of the movement is all in the wrists.

2. Looking at the Wrong Spot

Another common mistake made during double-unders is where people are looking. Staring down at your feet will not help you. Your body goes where you look. So, if you’re looking down, your posture will reflect it.

How to Fix it

Instead, find a focus point that is straight ahead of you (or slightly down) and try to keep eye contact. Think of standing tall and proud.

3. Tensing Up Your Body

If you go into performing double-unders already stressed out about the movement, this could be affecting your dubs big time. The more tense you are, the more work you’re ultimately doing, and the faster you’re going to feel the fatigue set in. Your shoulders are going to get real tired, real quick if they’re shrugged up to your ears while you’re trying to knock out big sets. And your legs are going to poop out in mere seconds because you’re unnecessarily straining them so much.

How to Fix it

One key to mastering double-unders is keeping your whole body relaxed. Stay relaxed so you can focus on the important things during this movement, not on whether you are going to make it to 50 unbroken. Visualize loose arms, loose legs. Remember to breathe.

And on a similar note…

4. Making Your Arms Work Too Much

Next, let’s talk about arm/wrist movement and placement. As stated above, dubs are all in the wrist. Big arm swings are one of the most common mistakes athletes make. Other times, people will hold their hands up too high (belly button-height) or too wide. Once again, you’re doing more work than you need to be doing.

How to Fix it

Just simply being aware of your hand placement and movement can help immensely in improving your DUs. Practice rotating at your wrists and finding the right rhythm without a rope to help you crush it when you have a rope in your hands.

When executing double-unders, your arms should be relaxed, with your hands relatively close to your sides. Big arm circles aren’t necessary. The only thing that needs to move is — you guessed it — your wrists.

Just like any other movement in functional fitness, you want to master the basics before moving on. Make sure before you dive into dubs, you’re proficient and feel confident with single-unders. And remember, practice makes perfect. Give yourself a break if you can’t string together 100 of these bad boys the first time you pick up your rope. Follow these tips, practice a ton, and you’ll be a pro in no time.