This kid holds the world record for solving Rubik’s cube — with his feet

By | August 11, 2019

He’s ready to square off.

Daniel Rose-Levine, 16, holds the Guinness World Record for solving a Rubik’s cube — with his feet. The upstate Red Hook, NY, teen can do it in 16.9 seconds, or as long as it takes some people to put on shoes and lace them up.

This coming Saturday, he welcomes anyone to challenge him at the New York City Math Festival, put on by the National Museum of Mathematics at Liberty Plaza in downtown Manhattan.

“I’m not worried about anyone beating me,” he told The Post. “The only way someone can beat me is if I mess up or get extremely unlucky.”

Rose-Levine first mastered the cube, using his hands, at age 11. After seeing other kids solve it at math camp, he taught himself by watching YouTube endlessly — much to his parents’ chagrin.

“They told me to do other things, but I was obsessed,” he said. His top time got to 5.3 seconds and he has more than 15 cubing-competition wins under his belt. (The current world record for solving by hand is 3.47 seconds, held by Yusheng Du from China.)

But it came with a price: Clicking and clacking for five hours a day led to a painful repetitive-stress injury at age 14.

“I concentrated on doing it with my feet to give my hands a rest,” said Rose-Levine.

Out of the gate, he was foot-solving at 40 seconds; meanwhile the then-world record was, Rose-Levine said, “only 28” seconds. (He isn’t worried about stressing his ankles, as he has cut down on his practice time.)

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Daniel Rose-Levine has won quite a few Rubik’s cubes competitions.

Stephen Yang

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He stopped solving Rubik’s cubes with his hands after being diagnosed with a stress injury at 14.

Stephen Yang

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It impressed Phil Yu, chief executive of The Cubicle, a West­chester-based retailer that sponsors Rose-Levine. “It would be disingenuous to say he is a cut above the rest; he is actually four or five cuts above them,” said Yu, who helps cover travel expenses for tournaments.

College, however, may prove a distraction. A rising 12th-grader, Rose-Levine plans to apply for early acceptance at MIT where he hopes to major in math.

As for how his cubing affects his social life, Rose-Levine said, “People think it’s interesting for the first few times. Then it wears off.”

And his fancy footwork has its limitations.

“I am not a particularly good dancer,” Rose-Levine admitted. “Sometimes people ask for an autograph and they want me to sign my name with my toes. I tell them that I don’t know how.”

Living | New York Post