Category Archives: Tumbling

More ways to work handstands

Hi All,

I wanted to share some ways of working handstands that you may not be doing right now. I see a lot of people getting stuck doing handstand holds against the wall, when there are SO MANY other ways to do them. Today I wanted to share a few of them.

more ways to work handstands

This first one is an ingenious way of using boys equipment to your advantage (seriously underutilized). One of the things I like about doing this kind of handstand versus something like a normal handstand hold is that it really engages the core in a way that typical holds don’t.

If your gymnasts aren’t quite ready to do that, I would encourage you start with something like this to get them used to being tight at different angles.

This second one is a slightly different version of the first one, except using a barrel. This one can be a really good way of encouraging that hollow handstand we often look for on bars.

This last one is actually one of my favorite ones. The foam keeps the gymnasts arms in close enough and you can work on getting ribs in etc.

 

If you’d like even more basic tumbling drills – you should check out “Beginning Tumbling – Where to start with preschool and rec (from handstands to back tucks)” it’s 94 minutes of easily taught drills and progressions that will lead to bigger and better tumbling.

Beginning Back Tumbling - Where to start with pre-school and rec - ipad

Train hard!

Developing Straight Bodies In Young Gymnasts

Hi All,

I just back from a great clinic in Maine last night, and a lot of what we talked about was how to develop shapes. The biggest one we talked about was how to get gymnasts to find STRAIGHT. So today I thought I would share a couple videos of things you can do with your little ones to help them find straight.

 

Developing Straight Bodies

While this first one requires two coaches, it definitely worth doing. Body tension is hard to teach, but with drills like this it gets the concept across a lot faster.

This second one is one I use all the time, besides being great for straight bodies, it’s also good for back hip circles. If you’re doing it for back hip circles you can have them hold something, a dowel or PVC for example to make it feel more like it will when they’re on the bar.

Train hard!

Thoughts for round offs and back handsprings

Hi All,

I wanted to share a couple more things you can be doing today for round offs and back handsprings. These are probably the skills that I get the most questions on, and I think part of it is that we often get bored with using the same drills year after year after year. Every time I see a new back handspring drill I’m a little giddy, because while I have my normal set of progressions, I’m always interested in trying something new to see if it works better, or if kids understand it better.

New ideas for round offs and back handsprings

I like this lever drill against a wall. If you’ve got a wall by you in any of your circuits I would definitely think about adding it. One thing I might do is is put a line on the wall of where they should put their hands (maybe two if you have shorties and tallies). If this is too advanced for your kids, I’ve also done a similar drill where they are just holding the bent knee lever – but they have a couple panel mats stacked behind their back foot so they know how high it’s supposed to be.

This second drill is a really nice variation of a fairly typical back handspring drill. There are a couple things I really like about it. 1) The jump forward at the beginning gets the gymnasts feet in front of her 2) The barrel is up on an 8″ so she has to jump a little more 3) the drop at the end gives her a little more time to get her feet to the ground so she doesn’t feel like she has to pike.

If you’d like even more basic tumbling drills – you should check out “Beginning Tumbling – Where to start with preschool and rec (from handstands to back tucks)” it’s 94 minutes of easily taught drills and progressions that will lead to bigger and better tumbling.

Beginning Back Tumbling - Where to start with pre-school and rec - ipad

Train hard!

Hurdle Drills

Hi All,

I wanted to share a couple great hurdle drills today. Hurdles are something you need to pay special attention too because so many things can go wrong that will cause problems later. Cross stepping can cause huge issues with Yurchenkos, wide arms can cause problems with round offs on beam and on and on. So it’s especially important that gymnasts know where all of their body parts are supposed to be in their hurdle, and how to be aggressive with good technique.

Hurdle drills - for correct aggressive hurdles

I really, really like things coming from a knee. I think it really helps exaggerate that push that gymnasts need to feel. I think my favorite progression in here is probably three, the one with the needle kick. I think that’s part of the round off that sometimes doesn’t get enough time in training, so to combine the nice hurdle drill with the needle kick is perfect.

Again, I like that this one comes from a knee, but I also like that they are putting their shins flat on the wall. This is really about where I want their shins in their hurdle (perpendicular to the ground), I don’t want their shins tucked underneath them.

 

If you’d like even more basic tumbling drills – you should check out “Beginning Tumbling – Where to start with preschool and rec (from handstands to back tucks)” it’s 94 minutes of easily taught drills and progressions that will lead to bigger and better tumbling.

Beginning Back Tumbling - Where to start with pre-school and rec - ipad

 

Train hard!

Cartwheel drills from Gymneo TV

Hi All,

Just one video today. But it’s a great one from Gymneo TV. You may remember some of the stuff they’ve put out in French, but they’re now also putting out stuff in English. This is a really nice video of lots of cartwheel drills you can do – obviously a lot of us don’t have all of the same equipment shown in these videos but a lot of the drills are easily modified using equipment we may already have. There are lots of drills for the beginning kick, but if you want to skip to the meat of the cartwheel start the video around 5:55.

Cartwheel drills from Gymneo TV

There are lots of good drills in this video but I have a few favorites. Bent leg lever holds on stall bars (shown at 6:00), straddle flat body holds between objects – forward and backward (shown at 11:40) and levers on both sides (shown at 14:01). I find that a lot of issues at the end of the cartwheel actually come from gymnasts never having been taught to lever on their “bad” side.

 

If you’d like even more basic tumbling drills – you should check out “Beginning Tumbling – Where to start with preschool and rec (from handstands to back tucks)” it’s 94 minutes of easily taught drills and progressions that will lead to bigger and better tumbling.

Beginning Back Tumbling - Where to start with pre-school and rec - ipad

 

Train hard!