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Round-off drills

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hey everyone

my mom needs help on how to teach a good round-off
it is hard to get the gymnasts to keep their arms at their ears

does anyone have any good drills to help teach a good round-off??


Side cartwheel

Lunge cartwheel

Side cartwheel to landing in a lunge

Side cartwheel to step together from lunge

Lunge cartwheel step together ( I like to do these down a wedge or off a panel mat to get them to have more time for their feet to come over and get their chest up )

Handstand snap down.

Nice handstand with shoulders in ears.

T their hands during a cartwheel.

- I teach them to do it on a line at first, and eventually the second hand will reach over so it's roughly shoulder width apart ( basically how I differentiate between beam or floor placement RO - haven't quite played with it much as for Tsuks )

Lunge cartwheel lunge with focus on getting chest up and hands popping off floor.

Cartwheels and handstands from a knee lunge so they learn how to kick hard and push hard out of the lunge. As deep as lunge as possible.

Stand, go to releve ( tip toe ) and fall into lunge position. Focus on keeping the shape of the lunge. This means the body leans diagonally forward from the heel to the back of the hand. Their is no arch in the back, with the ribs in; shoulders in ears as much as flexibility allows.

Condition for push strength, ab strength, leg strength.

Good handstands lead to good roundoffs. Lousy form handstands lead to lousy round offs. No exceptions for lazy form.

Honestly, I don't work enough one arm near and far arm cartwheels. I should. I prefer to never teach a dive cartwheel or aerial till a round off is decent. However, I may give in sometimes.

Sometimes I use carpet squares or foam cubes to kind of show how far the hands and feet should be placed when doing cartwheels or round-offs, especially on beam.

Playing a game of who has the longest cartwheel/roundoff. No jumping.

I start the round off from a stationary lunge versus just a step. Then stand, lean, lunge, round off that eventually flows together. I tell them you can do a step when I know you have mastered the lunge.

Somewhere in there is step, hurdle or power hurdle. For power hurdle, I prefer that they are physically prepared to make it worth their while.

Oh, yeah occasionally we will do round-off over a mailbox or mats or barrels. However, I do not want to allow them to dive into their round-off so I use it after they learn not to dive and that it still is hand-hand ( momentary post on the first hand ) versus hands being placed on the ground at a time.


I like to have my kids pretend that their arms are glued to their ears. I also play little tricks with them--such as imagining that they have a million dollars between their ears and their arms and that if they drop their arms they lose the money. Also, if the case is serious enough, I've used straps from strap bar and put it around the gymnast's arms (arms up by ears and make sure the strap goes behind the head). This forces them to keep their arms up by their ears.


Hi this is a little late for your round off post. But i came up with a great drill that helps them keep their arms by the ears and bodies in that hollow position. Ill put a round cheese wedge at the end of the rod floor thats connected to the pit have them round off over and into the pit, but while they are going over i have them roll with the wedge so it not only forces them to keep their arms by the ears and hollow. its a great drill and the kids have fun.


Oct 4, 2009
Ok what we do is we break the drill down in to 3 different parts we have the hurdle, the beginning and the end. We use three different drills for each then put them together.

Hurdle: on the floor start with drawing lines about 2m (more or less depending on the size of the gymnast) apart. Start at one and aim to power start hurdle (with 2 feet take off) to the other with no skill on the end. Try to make your hurdle as long as possible

The beginning: get a box and try to round off onto the box (to your knees or feet if you can depending on how high the box is (It should be about knee height). Incorporate the first drill by starting about 3 metres back from the box.

The end: I recommend getting a spotting box (not very high about 20cm and kick up to handstand and come down and aim to jump onto the box. This helps with the snap down required. Make sure when jumping onto the box you have your feet in front of you

After doing all these drills we have a crashmat a small spotting box (the long but flatter ones - about 20cm high) and place them on the side so that they are still longways but the base is what is normally the side. We place this in front of the crashmat with enough room for your feet to land in between. this is so that we can round off over the box and land on our back for prep for flip. Have a line where you have to hurdle from aswell

After that we take away the box and have to round off onto the crash mat and then a wedge is on the end (on the crash mat) and land on our back after round off as prep for flip

then........we put two crashmats in a row and have to round of onto them and flip/bhs on crashmat

and thats the end of our round off drills
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