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Charles Sturt University student skips for gold at the World Jump Rope Championships in the US

Thomas Norman, a Bachelor of Agricutural Science student at Charles Sturt University, recently competed at the World Jump Championships in Colorado Springs, United States. Alongside his teammates, Thomas secured a Gold medal in the Double Dutch Pair Freestyle and a Bronze medal in the Single Rope Speed Relay.

Outside of jump rope, Thomas Norman studies at Charles Sturt University, in Wagga Wagga. (Supplied: Thomas Norman)


The Norman family got their start in the niche sport when Thomas joined his jump rope team in primary school.


"We toured on road trips and performed at the NBL and the NRL and lots of schools," Thomas Norman said.


"Then it progressed to going to competitions and now I've been competing for 13 years and I've been to five world championships."

Thomas juggles his training with his studies, and said the mental strength required to compete was just as important as physical fitness and coordination.


"The timing in your head [is important], especially in an event like triples where we're doing three revolutions under your body," he said.

"It's all about clearing your head, focusing, trying to stay comfortable because your body will perform the best when you're relaxed — it's absolutely just as mental as physical."


While the sport is usually associated with the playground, jump rope is growing in popularity and currently has observer status — the first step to being included in the Olympic Games.

The Australian team won gold in the mixed 19+ paired Double Dutch event in the US. (Supplied Thomas Norman)


Tom Norman hopes competitive skipping will grace the Olympic stage sooner, rather than later.


"Hopefully in the next ten years, it's really exciting for the sport," he said.


"This competition [in the US] is so big compared to the other ones … you get to see more skippers, more people in the crowd, it's amazing to be here, such a privilege."


Source: ABC News, Sam Robinson and Conor Burke

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