Drills for Handstands and Dismounts

Today I wanted to share some drills for handstands and dismounts on beam. Levering is one of the most common deductions I see, and also makes a huge difference in the quality of the skill (ie. kicking all the way up, ability to hold etc). These are some drills that we saw almost immediate improvement after working for just fifteen minutes on them. One of the biggest things especially with young gymnasts is reminding them, but saying “lever, lever, lever” over and over gets a little old. Here are some awesome ways to get that movement down and put it on beam, and even floor.

Handstand drills

This is a good drill to add as a side station or into a warm up. I mostly like this because of the way it uses a reach to get good extension into the handstand. Having the line as a reference point for the hands got our gymnasts to reach vertical and most of them being able to hold it. Having them start with their leg already partially up helps remind them to lever without you having to say it.

We use this drill a lot on the low beam, but once they get acclimated to the low beam make sure you start taking it to higher beams. Again, encouraging the lift of the back leg, and a long reach to kick up high into a vertical handstand.

This is a drill I really enjoyed using mostly because I see the gymnast not twisting off correctly, such as landing too far away from the beam, not lifting the hand, and twisting off with bent legs. Starting with the leg up they’re not as likely to ‘pump’ the leg up and down and lose their levering action.

The twist off. A lot of times they can’t stick the dismount because the twist off is not quick enough and the chest is down. I like this one because it encourages a tight tall landing in the test off part of it. The second gymnast that does this is exactly how I wanted it done. Tight, tall and landing with the arm up.

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