Yui wasn't born a genius, she trained to be one. It was love at first sight when she discovered the sport of Double Dutch, and since then she has shot up the ranks to be one of the most influential players in the entire world. Known for her innovative dance and acrobatics, she is also a style maven, bringing fashion into her performances to outstanding success. How far can she push the boundaries of this street sport, and will she play a part in it appearing in future Olympic Games?
Hi, I’m Yui.
I’m a professional Double Dutch performer.
Thank you for having me.
Check out these 5 frames of love for me and you.
"What words describe you best?"
Well, of course "Double Dutch."
Double Dutch was invented about
300 years ago in New York.
Back then, they used to play with laundry ropes,
or whatever they could get their hands on.
These days we dance and perform acrobatics
with two large jump ropes.
My team REG☆STYLE was an international champion
3 years in a row.
I’d also describe myself as "stylish."
I strive to have “style” in all aspects of life.
I want to get rid of labels that try to define me,
such as gender or age.
If someone asks me, "What are you?"
I simply answer: "I’m Sasaki Yui." That’s what I am.
Cars can’t use the street today, so it’s a chance
to perform and chill with friends.
Should we get started?
- Let’s kick it!
Give it up for our Double Dutch dancers!
Yo, guys, you gotta jump!
How long have we been doing this stupid trick?
– I think about 4 years?
- 4 years, aha.
This is my team and we’re world champs.
Our style is "cool & funny," but I guess
we’re 90% funny, 10% cool.
It’s always a blast.
Thank you so much for coming!
We’re big fans of REG☆STYLE.
And we love Yui.
She has so much charisma,
and I can’t keep my eyes off of her.
Turn around, look at that.
You see, Yui’s so funny.
She doesn’t care what people think about her.
"What do you like about Double Dutch?"
You can’t do it alone.
You gotta get with some buddies because
someone has to swing the ropes.
And a strong group dynamic is key.
Because the ropes get tangled
when there’s chaos in the group.
It teaches communication and helps us mature.
That’s why I love this sport.
We train twice a week in parks
and other wide-open spaces.
We also go to studios so we can check
our moves in front of a mirror.
"Double Dutch is widely known in more than 60 countries.
Japan is said to have more than 350,000 casual and pro players. Among competing countries, Japan ranks in the top."
In terms of skill, our members are all world-class.
They appear in TV commercials and perform
with an internationally known circus.
Our dream is for Double Dutch to be included in
the Olympics for the 2028 LA Games.
"Recently, more street sports are being included in the Olympic Games.
They think that Double Dutch is ready for inclusion, too."
"A professional Double Dutch performance is graded for technic,
expression, routine, and originality."
"Yui’s team “REG☆STYLE" has won 3 of these world competitions."
People wonder how I get I along with
my team being the only girl.
But we actually get along great.
When I was a kid, we moved a lot and
I had to transfer to new schools.
I had a bit of trouble being accepted
by the girl cliques there.
So, I’d just hang out with the boys instead,
playing baseball or soccer.
It was how I got through school life.
If I got the first point or goal,
then the boys would rush to compliment me on it.
They didn’t even have to say much, and it was OK,
because that's how we communicated.
I discovered Double Dutch
when I was in high school.
I saw it at my older sister’s school festival.
It only took me 3 second to be like, "This is it!."
It was absolutely love at first sight.
When she joined our University’s team,
she definitely stood out.
I remember thinking,
"Wow, what a cool girl we’ve got."
But, because she’s tall, it was more difficult for her
to control her moves, unlike smaller players.
Yui wasn’t the best nor was
she particularly skilled back then.
But she was disciplined in
every step of the way thereafter, and didn’t crumble under the pressure.
There comes a point in some athletes’ training when
effort surpasses innate skill, and they reach their best.
Yui was that kind of athlete.
"Yui won the national competition in 2009."
"Later, in the international competition, she placed in second."
Hey, what’s up!
This guy has helped me so much.
It’s DJ Mar Ski.
He’s been supporting the street
games scene for ages.
Everyone gives props to Yui.
They all hugely respect her.
It’s not like it was before, where it was
all about gimmicky tricks.
REG☆STYLE has its own groove and
originality in their performance.
Their attention to detail is top.
There are tons of girls who admire Yui.
What she has goes beyond skill.
It’s her personality and expression.
Yui and her team’s style has had a major influence
in the Double Dutch world.
I think that the Japanese Double Dutch teams
are quite innovative, and they have their own voice.
It’s such an honor to have
this many words of support.
- Can I go cry in the back?
- No, no, stay here.
Well, I’m so happy.
Thank you very much.
Provides me with an expanse
of personal possibilities.
Today REG☆STYLE is going to perform.
Should we all wear the same costumes?
I was thinking we could wear all black,
then mixed colors, then all red.
We change up our costumes depending on
the performance or our audience.
Yui has an eye for trends, and she’s well-known
in the Double Dutch world for it.
She’s been like that for as long as I can remember.
I always trust her taste.
When it’s Yui’s turn to jump, everyone goes crazy.
She’ll incorporate the fashion that
she’s wearing into new moves.
She’s just so creative.
Aside from the performance itself,
the most important element is our costume.
And we couldn’t ask for a better
ambassador of style than Yui.
We put a lot of thought into what
we’ll wear at competitions.
We approach it like we plan
to win just from style alone.
Yui sketches out all our ideas into something
really cool, and even comes up with ideas for fabrics.
In the end, she chose for us a black
and blingy gold costume.
Yui has a bird’s-eye view of the team
and watches out for us. So, her presence is huge.
Today I’m in Harajuku to shop.
I choose things to wear that match
the dance that I’ll perform.
Like, certain moves work better with
colorful prints rather than a solid color.
Also, if the fabric swings,
it will make my moves look cooler.
Silhouette is important, but so is comfort.
It can’t cause blisters or be too stiff to move in.
In that case, it doesn’t matter how cool
the fashion is, Comfort is priority.
What describes my style?
"Boyish" isn’t the right word for it.
It’s a big mix of everything I love.
When I was a child, my mom
raised me like a princess.
She put me in frilly skirts,
and I wasn’t too happy about it.
I had long, silky hair, and wore lace socks.
My dresses had puffy sleeves.
Then I started to wear pants, and I was happy
because I could run in them.
I changed my style little by little.
But me and my mom were total opposites.
When I was in college, I really wanted to get
blonde highlights or get my hair permed.
But when I came back home with my new style,
the first thing she said was: "You get an F!."
That was around the time when I was getting
noticed for my Double Dutch fashion.
So, it was disappointing.
If I’d walked the path my mom wanted me to,
I’d have lived an empty life.
So, I’m very happy with who I am today.
These days, I get more and more chances to
show my mom that I’m working hard.
Like, "Look, I told ya so!."
And that’s where I’m at.
To me, fashion is...
A way of life.
You only live once.
If you love yourself, then it means that
all decisions come from love.
We have to do all that we can while we’re alive,
so it brings happiness to our souls.
It’s better to live our own unique lives
than one lived by others.
Society wants us to fit in to categories.
But to me, "diversity" applies to everyone.
She fully commits herself to what she believes in.
She never stands still, and that’s why
she reaches her goals.
There’s only one Sasaki Yui, and she’s my daughter.
She taught me how to be alive.