The rope doesn't straighten out perfectly when not in use, but that doesn't affect it at all when in use. The rope is thicker and lighter than the other jump rope I have. The photo is a little misleading, it makes it look like the rope is attached perpendicular to the handles. It's not, the rope is attached to the end of the handle. Best used indoors - I used this for a short while outdoors, on a brick patio, and the rope got quite a lot of scratches on it. Overall, a no frills jump rope, not bad for the price.