Developing Shapes in Tumbling

Hi All,

Today I’m going to talk a little bit about developing shapes in your gymnasts tumbling. I’m a big fan of going slow. Take your time making sure the gymnast understand the shapes that you want in each phase of the skill. What I see a lot of times with coaches teaching tumbling too fast is that gymnasts don’t understand when/where/how the shape change happens in a skill. Going slow will help you identify and teach those points.

This first drill is actually the one I was talking about as a lead up to my favorite back handspring drill . The importance of teaching gymnasts how to have open shoulders and hips is clear. But it’s not always easy. I would also say when starting out spot this drill for at least a few turns. The number of gymnasts who will arch and belly flop will surprise you.

This second video is a nice example of taking it slow, and emphasizing what each body shape should be. You can even turn each part of this into it’s own side station. For example the first hurdle shape she holds could be against a wall. The cartwheel step-in off a panel mat. The middle of the back handspring position on a wall or an overturned pac-man, and the hollow body shape where ever you want. What you really want to emphasize is EXACTLY what you want in these shapes: what do you want their head, shoulders, ribs, hips to be doing, and when do you want it to change and how?

Train hard!
back handspring drill.jpg

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