I’m a big fan of anything that has the name “Rogue” on it. I’m not just a Rogue Fitness fanboy, purchase just about anything from them and you’ll understand what I’m talking about. The original SR-1 bearing speed rope they make provides one of the best bangs for the buck when it comes to “fast” jump ropes; I say that because I still believe that fast jump ropes aren’t good for everybody, besides the most efficient of jumpers. Personally I preferred the long handled variant over the short, because to me it was easier to whip around, but you can’t argue that it’s any better, because the Chris Spealler variant is based of of the shorter handles, and he’s killing the double under game. That special version was nothing more than a palette swap of the SR-1S though. Now, the champ, Rich Froning has his own variant and while it resembles the SR-1 with long handles, it’s got some thoughtful additions.
The SR-1F sports the same length tapered handles, but now has a grey rubber on the ends of the handles for added grip. They do get dirty right away, but that’s purely cosmetic and the grip is a welcome improvement. There are now end caps at the bottoms of each handles, that add a little bit more weight, but nothing that’s going to hamper your wrist speed. Rogue’s website says they still use the same 4 bearing set-up, but the eyelet is shaped a little differently with a little gasket between the it and the handles, probably to keep dirt and hand gunk out. It could just be my mind playing tricks on me, but the SR-1’s have one of the best free spinning handles on the market; and the SR-1F seem to be better than it’s predecessor.
The Achilles heel of the original SR-1 was the cable provided with the handles. You could get it going, but in the air it seemed to try to re-coil itself if you slowed the rope down at all. My preferred setup of the original SR-1 included the excellent cable that Jump N Rope sells. The grey cable on the SR-1F is improved; it seems to not retain it’s coiled shape, making it easy to untangle and maintain it’s domed shape while jumping. The hard PVC coating is similar to the original, however, it does feel slightly lighter, so if you have timing issues, this might not be the cable to learn on. I’ll stick with this cable until it implodes, which will probably be a while.
If you’re coming from just about any speed rope, you’ll feel right at home. The learning curve of the SR-1F isn’t very steep if you’re used to the sort. Beginners should probably spend some time on heavier ropes; I don’t like recommending speed ropes until you’re able to string more than 20 unbroken double-unders with proper mechanics. I’m a speed rope junkie, with a few big name brands in my bag, but I prefer the Froning SR-1F to them so far. I had no trouble adjusting from my RPM, which was my main rope, though I previously spent a lot of time with the original SR-1.
What completes the package is the price at which the SR-1F can be had, under $30 shipped ($23.95 excluding shipping and tax)! Most people are charging upwards of $50 for their ropes that provide the same performance. See, not everything Rogue sells will break the bank! For the price, this rope is damn near unbeatable. It looks awesome, performs just as well as any other speed rope, and doesn’t cost as much as the top tier ropes.
I don’t know how much input Rich actually put into helping design this rope, but it’s definitely made for a champion.