6-Year-Old Girl Becomes First Female to Solve Rubik’s Cube in Under 6 Seconds

6-year-old Cao Qixian set the new women’s world record for solving a 3x3x3 Rubik’s cube in 5.97 seconds (average) at the World Cube Association Rubik’s Cube International Open in Singapore.

Qixian, who hails from China’s Jiangsu Province, started playing with a Rubik’s cube when she was only three, inspired by a cousin who taught her the art of ‘speed-cubing’, solving the world-famous puzzle as quickly as possible. However, after about a year, the girl got so good at it that her cousin had nothing to teach her anymore and her parents got her a speed-cubing coach. She enjoyed speed-solving the Rubik’s cube so much that she practiced for two to three hours every day, and her time was getting better and better. However, there was a point where she hit a wall and needed all of her family’s help to overcome it.

Photo: Joshua Hoehne/Unsplash

“She was stuck at 12 seconds when she tried to speed to 10 seconds for three months,” Cao Qian, Qixian’s mother, recalled. “She practices a lot but made no progress and almost gave up.”

To be able to motivate and help her overcome this hurdle, Cao Qixian’s entire family took up Rubik’s cube speed-cubing and even participated in adult competitions. However, no one dared to dream that the gifted speed-cuber would be able to set a new world record at the tender age of six. And yet, at the World Cube Association (WCA) Rubik’s Cube International Open in Singapore, she became the first female to solve the 3x3x3 Rubik’s cube in under 6 seconds in the average category.

“We never thought that she would be breaking the world record so soon,” Cao Qian said. “For two to three days since we came home, it felt like we were still in a dream.”

Cao’s average time of 5.97 seconds after five rounds of speed-cubing won her the trophy and the title of world record holder. But she has no plans of slowing down. Inspired by her recent performance, the 6-year-old girl is now going after the women’s single-time record, which currently stands at 4.44 seconds.


In the Average category, participants have five tries, with the fastest and slowest performances getting ignored, with the median of the other three being the official result. In the Single category, a single try is considered per competitor.