Skipton Skipping Games – 3

Excerpt from the book Sports the Olympics Forgot This book describes 40 sports that ought to be played but aren’t, because I made them up.


In 1900 the long-jump and high-jump were added to the Skipping Games. The high-jump is probably the most technically difficult event as the jumper has to time their leap perfectly so that the rope doesn’t bring the bar down at any point of its arc. Roger Herritt has won the most high-jump titles with 10 victories between 1921 and 1938. His technique was to skip quickly towards the high jump and then leap upwards just as the rope cleared his feet with his arms held high so that the rope cleared the bar easily. His reasoning was that he didn’t have to skip rope after he had landed.

The most dangerous events are the 100-yard and 440-yard hurdles introduced in 1932. Most competitors wear gumshields as the tendency is for the skipper to trip over the rope near the hurdle and smack their face into the ground or into the hurdle. The first winner of the 440-yard hurdles, Emmett Riley, fell over three times during the race but still won the first prize. Emmett ran the perfect race, not falling over once, two years later and decided it was time to retire with his teeth still intact.

Published by Julian Worker

I was born in Leicester. I attended school in Yorkshire and University in Liverpool. I have been to 93 countries and territories including The Balkans and Armenia in 2015, France and Slovakia in 2016, and some of the Greek Islands in 2017. My sense of humour is distilled from The Goons, Monty Python, Fawlty Towers, and Midsomer Murders. I love being creative in my writing and I love writing about travelling. My next books are a travel book about Greece and a novel inspired by Brexit.

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