Another one of those kip threads...

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Okay, so I'm pretty close to my kip, but I'm really tall and I just can't seem to get enough momentum. Also my feet keep smacking the mat. :(

I can't really do a good leg lift; it's like I try to lift up my legs but then my back kind of arches and I can't get my toes to the bar. It's hard to explain. We don't do leg lifts very often and I don't get to choose my conditioning. I can do a leg lift lying on my back no problem. We never get to use the strap bar because we aren't on team, and we don't do drop kip drills.

Are there any good conditioning exercises that I can do at home (other then leg lifts)? It's one of the last level 5 skills I really need. The other is handspring vault.

EDIT: I also have wonky pike flexibility. It just doesn't seem to want to get better. Some days it's okay, not great but okay, on rare occasions I'll get my nose to my knees but it'll be really, REALLY painful, and other days I can hardly go past my knees. :(
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Simply put you need to setup a bar at home in the door or hanging on a tree or clothespole and start doing Hanging L and Hanging V-holds besides leg lifts.

If you have a good pike and basket position ( on your back, nose to knees ) then you'll be able to have a better kip. However, if your pike flexibility is just okay, you will need to be stronger.


Former Gymnast
Proud Relative
Club Owner
Mar 23, 2009
West Midlands, England
United Kingdom
If you can get a bar set up at home that will help a lot, then you can practice your pike leg lifts to the bar at home.
Another good 'invention' for kips is a broom handle about a meter long with 2 holes drilled into it, about 3 inches from either end. Poke 2m of 10mm Shock cord elastic through the holes to make a loop, and attach it to something sturdy. Then you can practice closing your shoulder angle by lying on the floor, holding onto the broom handle and pulling downwards towards your thighs.
That description was a bit rubbish, but this is what I mean:

Other than that, dish rocks will do your stomach muscles good and help with the last bit of the kip.
Practice your pike fold, either standing or sitting, every day, but make sure your muscles are warm before doing it.
If you have room somewhere, try doing forward roll to pike stand without bending your legs at all.

Hope that helps,
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