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Finishing

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Jun 13, 2007
75
NJ
Does anyone have any drills or suggestions for helping a girl finish better. I tried ballet classes but it didn't seem to help in the right areas. The simpler the better. The coach can put her in the position and it looks great, but she can't seem to find it on her own.
 

gym law mom

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Dec 23, 2006
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Are you referring to the standard pose at the end of a vault, dismount off beam/bars and at the end of the fx? Typically it is some arch to the back, arms up in a V with the head back slightly. To get that down I've never seen actual drills. I think our kids were told to do it in practice everytime they ended any routine and it became 2nd nature to them.
 
H

hammy

Guest
we always did it standing up straight w/ arms in a V and our chins up. we always called it Champion Stretch. The one coach at my current gym has the girls do it so that they look like headless gymnasts--with their head all the way back. I'm not sure of any drills other than having the gymnast try to figure it out and constantly reminding them.
 
Jun 13, 2007
75
NJ
I probably didn't phrase it right the first time, she has the idea and the poses at the end just not the tightness and ability to hold them is the issue. Her over all strength is pretty good her coach says. I mean finishing in general. The tightness required to make everything look nice. I am looking for drills to help get the endurance to flex everything at once. Our gym doen't offer and sort of dance instruction, I know some of you probably do. We do the standard workout with splits bridges ect. but nothing that really holds the whole thing tight at one time. The most they do is releve walks in class, Does anyone do anything else?
 
H

hammy

Guest
If you know some dance try adding some into the beam and floor workout. I used to have a ballet coach at my gym and as a compulsory gymnast I had 30 minutes of ballet every practice. Anywho, try adding a special ballet part into floor or beam, or you can create your own ballet session.
 

gym law mom

Active Member
Proud Parent
Dec 23, 2006
2,527
Country
USA
Our gym does not offer any dance training for the younger girls. The L9s-10s do get some dance instruction. I'm trying to remember if there was anything specific that my daughter did to learn to make the finish look better and other than doing it over and over and over I can't think of anything. Right now they are doing progressions for skills or isolated skills themselves, so they don't throw a finish pose when they're done.

For the last skill in a routine---handstand on beam, the coaches would work on keeping tight, pointing toes etc. so that when the feet hit the mat, they would just go right into their finish. Same with bars and vault. I know the L5 and 6 floor routines do allow for the girls to pick a finishing pose(sorry, we don't do L4). My daughter would change that just about every other meet---she'd think of one that she liked better than the one she had just done.
 

Mac

Member
Mar 7, 2007
65
The tightness required to make everything look nice.
The best thing I've seen is a coach putting their hands on the gymnast to set them in the required position. It lets the child feel the right way. And then constant reinforcement. For compulsory, the required set positions are so specific that anyone not trained in them will as likely harm as help.

If nothing else the child will eventually get it just to shut the coach up! [that's facetious]

I am looking for drills to help get the endurance to flex everything at once.
That's the coaches' job. If they are doing it, then your doing other stuff can easily get in the way. And if they are not doing it, then the solution is to find someone who can, rather than assume that role yourself.

If you feel the need to do something, handstands, push-ups, and V-ups are always good time-fillers. When mine says, "I'm bored," I say, "Do 20 push-ups. Hold 20 second handstands. Do 200 V-ups." Amazing how un-bored she becomes!

Just friendly advice, one parent to another.
 
J

Jea_bernadette

Guest
what really helped for me was, we would sit in front of a mirror and just do the part of the routine that required using your arms or just the dance parts. so that you could see what you were doing and how to fix it.
 
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GymnastRaeRae87

Guest
If I were her I would practice. At my gym with the little kids they tell them to do a "tada" at the end of their skill. They do the pose and say TADA! I don't know how old your DD is but that is just what they do at my gym. This might seem weird but some times I try to visualize myself doing a perfect routine and like I am in the Olympics or a competition and I stick a solid routine and I get a really good score and how I would finish. When I am finishing I like to think how proud I am of myself and how proud my parents are and how I want to make myself look good and show that I am proud of what I did.
 
J

~JEM~

Guest
As a coach I am very big on tightness and stretch. I get gymnasts from age 5 and train them untill they are about 10 so I do a lot of drills with them.
First I do major basics, sit ur daughter down legs stretched infront of her and get her to squeeze and relax her thighs and knees 3 times, then repeat with feet (ie point, relax), then repeat with her bottom, then tell her to squeeze all the way from her bottom right to her tippy toes etc. Then I tell them 'do u think u girls can squeeze that hard when you do ur routine?' and put them to the test but making them try, after a while they do it automatically.
Another one I do is test teir shapes, all gyms call each shape a different name so let me know if u dont understand. First do basics, as always. get her to lie on her bak on the floor and tell her to squeeze her bottom tight, you should be able to lift up her feet without her loosing the straight shape, if she is tight, if not she will bend in the middle u dont want bend. Then you can do this with front support, if her whole body is tight u should be able to lift her feet to handsand without her sagging or loosing shape.
If you want more let me know i have A LOT. Basically all you need to do is have a consistend body tension program just twice a week, and within a few weeks u will see MASSIVE improvement
 
Jun 13, 2007
75
NJ
As a coach I am very big on tightness and stretch. I get gymnasts from age 5 and train them untill they are about 10 so I do a lot of drills with them.
First I do major basics, sit ur daughter down legs stretched infront of her and get her to squeeze and relax her thighs and knees 3 times, then repeat with feet (ie point, relax), then repeat with her bottom, then tell her to squeeze all the way from her bottom right to her tippy toes etc. Then I tell them 'do u think u girls can squeeze that hard when you do ur routine?' and put them to the test but making them try, after a while they do it automatically.
Another one I do is test teir shapes, all gyms call each shape a different name so let me know if u dont understand. First do basics, as always. get her to lie on her bak on the floor and tell her to squeeze her bottom tight, you should be able to lift up her feet without her loosing the straight shape, if she is tight, if not she will bend in the middle u dont want bend. Then you can do this with front support, if her whole body is tight u should be able to lift her feet to handsand without her sagging or loosing shape.
If you want more let me know i have A LOT. Basically all you need to do is have a consistend body tension program just twice a week, and within a few weeks u will see MASSIVE improvement

Thanks This is exactaly what I was looking for. My dd has been doing gymnastics for a long time and I have switched gyms many times I'm sad to say. (each for a different reason, from bad coaches to just moving too far to travel). So I think somewhere along the line she seems to have missed the teaching of how each muscle is kept tight and what it feels like to be tight. The coaches she is working with now are trying to fix that but sometimes what they say doesn't quite sink in. So alot of times she will try and try with no sucess.(very frustrating for her) She is one of those gymnasts who had bad form and habits and the coach just kept right on teaching her new skills without fixing the old ones. I was not aware of proper technique until it was explained to me by the new coach. She is great and really doesn't mind us working at home as long as we are doing it right. Alot of times she gives my dd corrections to work on 1 at a time so we can't mess them up. But for some reason my dd doesn't always know what muscles to squeeze to make each skill look pretty. Although her new skill a fhs taught by the new coach is absolutly georgus great form and looks pretty. So I know she'll get there with the help of this coach, but I was looking for a few excercises to help her with body awareness.

Thanks to everyone for ther comments. After I read your comments I see how I need to explain myself better sorry.:eek: It seems I am not to clear with my writing.
 

xstitchcarina

Member
Mar 7, 2007
286
49
Netherlands
THat is a good tip, JEM. My daugther has the problem with tightness with landing. She either lands on her behind or she has a big step, she doesn't do her handspring over horse/pegasus with bend legs too, and it is because she doesn't have natural tightness. So if you have any more tips, maybe shown in pictures even, I can do them with her.
 

Monkeygirlsmom

Active Member
Proud Parent
Feb 10, 2007
764
my youngest needs work on the finishing!! she can do it but I wish the coaches would be more on her about it!!
 
J

~JEM~

Guest
THat is a good tip, JEM. My daugther has the problem with tightness with landing. She either lands on her behind or she has a big step, she doesn't do her handspring over horse/pegasus with bend legs too, and it is because she doesn't have natural tightness. So if you have any more tips, maybe shown in pictures even, I can do them with her.
Landing is a pretty easy thing to fix, however if a skill isnt done properly landings are always going to be off. To work landings I stack LOTS of boxes up ontop of each other and the girls have to climb up and do a straight jump off with a tight landing, this gets them used to coming down from a height (such as beam) or from a skill like a layout etc and having a tight landing (absorbing the power instead of letting the power have them landing on their butts). I also test their landing shape I say everyone show me the shape you should land in and then you push down on their hips trying to push their butt to the floor, if it is tight they wont move but if they dont understand the whole power absorbing thing they will fall. If they can do this get them doing basic things saying use ur tight landing and when they land test it etc.

To fix your daughters handspring if she has bent legs it seems she would need to work just basic handspring drills which are pretty simple also, some can be done at home very easily. She needs to be taught heal drive which is the key to a straight legged vault in my opinion. heal drive is in basic words kicking ur heals, as soon as u jump on the board heal drive is wat gets you into the handstand etc so if she is in a tuck she has no heal drive and is using tuck to get her over.
Basic heal drive drills would be: stack boxes up to about her shoulder hieght and put a board infront, starting with feet on board and hands on boxes they have to jump their heals to handstand (u dont want to see a pike shape, or bottoms being used to get the handstand, u want to see their heals leading) and they just repeat this over and over. You can do that one at home with hands on any sort of higher surface (like a chair) and feet on floor aslong as its soft.
another drill is cat springs but they are hard to explain, i will try my best. its done on floor and basically its jumping from feet to hands they start in front support and with hands on floor jump their feet into an 'open' shape' if any1 can tell me how to put pictures here i will draw u a picture.
This post is getting long but i have a lot more haha.
Instead of having the girls work vault over the horse, maybe the coach needs to go back a step and work it over boxes, this is much less scary than the huge vault infront of them and they are more likely to use correct shapes. Also the way I got my level 4s going over the vault was simply putting 3 crash mats ontop of each other and vaulting using this not the vault. I could not believe how this fixed 1 of the girls vaults! They also land on their back here so works correct shapes coming off etc. I hav lots of photos to attach for u if someone could let me know how.
This is SOOOO long. anymore questions just ask. OH also work alot of handstands because vault is a hanstand and certainly not a tuck handstand, sometimes kids dont understand that their basic shapes are wat they need to use in their skill, its easy really, maybe being told that would help?
 
Jun 13, 2007
75
NJ
JEM,

I tried the drills you sugested with my dd lying on the floor and tring to tighten each mucle one at a time. She did great until we got to her core (belly, and back) she couldn't isolate those mucsles and squeeze them. She could sort of do it if she tightened everything at once, but couldn't keep it tight, I don't think she knows how to tighten that area. I menioned it to her coach tonight and she gave her a whole new strength workout for the next few weeks to do at home. V-ups, hold in a hollow body on the floor( like what you suggested), and we have a pull up bar so she is to work on pike ups too. Thanks for the insight!!!! also if you know of anything else that may help give a shout out.:D:D:D
 
J

~JEM~

Guest
JEM,

I tried the drills you sugested with my dd lying on the floor and tring to tighten each mucle one at a time. She did great until we got to her core (belly, and back) she couldn't isolate those mucsles and squeeze them. She could sort of do it if she tightened everything at once, but couldn't keep it tight, I don't think she knows how to tighten that area. I menioned it to her coach tonight and she gave her a whole new strength workout for the next few weeks to do at home. V-ups, hold in a hollow body on the floor( like what you suggested), and we have a pull up bar so she is to work on pike ups too. Thanks for the insight!!!! also if you know of anything else that may help give a shout out.:D:D:D
One for tummy isolation is get her to lie on the floor and put ur hand under her back and say for her to squash ur hand (ie make her back flat on the floor eliminating the natural arch we all have) kids always like this 1. but it should come simply from tummy muscles its not from a rounding of her back. u can say to push her belly button to the floor if that is easier for her t understand etc. let me know if her tightness inmproves int he next few weeks and how she is doing!
 

Ingymmom

Active Member
Jul 12, 2007
981
One for tummy isolation is get her to lie on the floor and put ur hand under her back and say for her to squash ur hand (ie make her back flat on the floor eliminating the natural arch we all have) kids always like this 1. but it should come simply from tummy muscles its not from a rounding of her back. u can say to push her belly button to the floor if that is easier for her t understand etc. let me know if her tightness inmproves int he next few weeks and how she is doing!
This is exactly what my dd's coaches do, boy it has worked wonders for us:D
 

xstitchcarina

Member
Mar 7, 2007
286
49
Netherlands
Wow thanks for this long reply. I will see how I can help her. Basically with the catspring you mean. Sitting with hands on the floor, or jump hands on the floor and kick legs up?

We can't use boxes, since we don't have a permanent hall, so we have to build up the hall with the apparatus. We don't have double apparatus, except for beam. But I do know what you mean. My dd trainer first lets them just jump on the springboard a few times, and then she lets them jump up and do a handstand on horse. The thing is, when she does just the handstand, she usually does make the handstand in the right way. It is just when she comes to doing the handspring over the horse, that she bends her legs.

I am hoping at her camp in 2 weeks time they will get her to do it right. It will be in a permanent hall and there are only 15 girls, so there will be plenty of time to do stuff.

The reason she has problems with this, because she never learnt the handstand from springboard to let fall flat on back properly. When she was in rec gym, she didn't go further than just a front roll on 2 thick mats. Then when she joined the selection team, she skipped 3 levels and the level she missed most is the handstand flatfall. She has been doing it with her though ,cause a few other girls needed to do it this past season, so she lets her do it too.

But thanks so much. If you have any more tips, I am open for it.
 
D

Dizzy Di

Guest
Hi sounds as though a mirror would help! do you have one, i have the same problem with a couple of my girls , i could pull my hair out, ugh!, just lots of nagging, im sure, we have them sit in pike on the floor and pull their knees back and up so their feet come offf the floor the very good gymnasts can get around 3 inches off the floor with their heels,
Backs have to be very straight, knees pulled hard into the floor, i have found this has helped with the leg tension, all around the gym they All do 5 sets of 30sec holds at the beginning of every session, we now have some lovely legs and the girls marks have risen , i think becuase they have felt the stretch. The same thing for leaps sit in splits on the floor correct arm positions etc, the mirror for upper body, good luck,
 
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