A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Jump! is a reality show about competitive double Dutch jump rope teams. As with many sports-based shows, there's lots of focus on teamwork, working hard, and other life lessons, plus some competitive behavior. Expect some strong language ("piss," "damn"; curses bleeped), occasional unsporting attitudes, and some arguing, especially among stage moms. Tweens and teens who like dance and related activities should find it interesting.
What's the story?
JUMP! is a reality series that follows a champion double Dutch jump rope team as they prepare to compete at the Apollo, the Super Bowl of double Dutch competitions. The Newark-based Floyd Little Double Dutch team, which has received national attention thanks to appearances at the White House and the 2014 BET Awards, practice and compete under the supervision of coaches Quaniee Floyd and Laila Little. As they prepare, they go head to head against teams such as Washington, D.C.'s Kandie's Rope Twisters in regional competitions that test their speed and technique while they jump two ropes at a time. As the pressure to win rises, so does the drama, especially when the jumpers' moms accuse coaches of showing preferential treatment and when coaches challenge each other. But when the kids are on the floor, everyone has to push that all aside and focus on doing her best.
Is it any good?
Jump! highlights how double Dutch jump roping has evolved from a common children's game to an international sporting activity requiring strength, speed, acrobatic coordination, and endurance. It also shows how, in the United States, competitive double Dutch continues to give kids, particularly in urban areas, positive opportunities to learn life lessons in goal setting, teamwork, leadership, and being part of something meaningful.
The competitions are fun to watch and offer some insight into the techniques both jumpers and rope turners must master. But, even though the coaches and parents are mentors, some of the trash talking, family drama, and a few of the jumpers' obnoxious behavior gets to be a bit much. If you can get past the standard reality conflicts, the show offers an interesting look at the unique double Dutch community.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about double Dutch. Where did the game come from? How and when did it evolve from a children's activity to a competitive event?
Is the tension between coaches and moms featured here real? Or is it emphasized for the cameras? Could shows like this one be just as realistic and entertaining without that kind of drama?
For kids who love being athletic
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