Uneven Bars A Skills


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  • Tap swing release to land on back in a pit, resi-pit, or stacked mats. The gymnast should look at their toes during the flight.
  • Tap swing release spotter catches the gymnast. (For larger gymnasts a spotting belt is the next best thing) Target position should be about 45 degrees above horizontal. Again the gymnast should look at their toes.
  • Same as above drill but after brief pause the spotter turns the gymnast over to complete the flyaway. This pause can be gradually eliminated, then the spot can be gradually eliminated.
Front flyaway
  • The key to this skill is getting a feel for the tap. It is essentially a reverse of a normal tap swing. The front swing position is an open body leading with the heels, as the gymnast passes through the bottom, they must hollow then kick their heels towards the ceiling. Work the tap without releasing the bar until you get a feel for it. The tendency is to tap early. Work the tap late.
  • Once the tap is consistant, dismounting into a pit or with a belt to get the feel for the turnover is next.
  • The gymnast should feel a significant block off the bar prior to release. This will aid in gaining amplitude and good direction for the dismount.
Fronthip circle
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  • Initiate the skill from a high support. The bar should be resting on the upper theigh.
  • The gymnast should fall forward with a tight body leaning well forward to initiate momentum.
  • As the gymnast moves to excecute the skill they should lean forward agressively and reach around the bar to get their hands on top of the bar.
  • Stack folded panel mats under the bar. Have the gymnast sit on the mats and lean forward to support on the bar. This helps develop the feel for the last portion of the front hip circle.
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  • The timing of the kip is everything and most gymnasts tend to kip early.
  • Work glides on a low bar, being sure to keep straight legs, head in, shoulders open.
  • If the gymnast has a good glide then they can work glide and lift their toes to the bar on the rearward phase. Ensure that they do not lift their toes too early.
  • Once they can glide and lift their toes then they can work kips with a spot to develop a feel for the motion.
  • Hanging leg lifts will greatly improve kips as it strengthens both the abs and the critical muscle groups in closing the shoulders.
  • Stem rises: On a bar mounted near a wall, or a set of P-bars set uneven (distance apart will depend on size and strength of gymnast) hang on the higher bar with feet on the low bar (or wall) push off the bar/wall with the feet and pull the bar to the waiste with straight arms. Widen the bars to increase difficulty.
  • On a low bar, stretch body over a barrel. Shoulders should be extended and body straight. (glide swing extension). Pull toes to bar and kip.
  • Place a block or stacked panel mats next to a high bar upright. Loop an elastic band with handles over the bar. Lie on your back with your bottom close to the edge of the mats/block. Hold the handles, lift your legs to the handles and pull down while bringing your feet to the ground and trying to stand up. Keep straight arms.
  • Hold onto the bar with open shoulders with toes to the bar. This will help develop stomach strength required for the kip.
  • Lay down and hold a weight slightly off the ground with your arms by your ears. Then aggresively bring the weight with straight arms to your quadraceps and sit up.
  • Click here to view an article on the glide kip.
  • Fun game, good drill. Place foam blocks or other small light object at the extension point of the gymnasts glide. Have the gymnast grab the block and throw it over the bar.
Kip cast handstand
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  • The gymnasts kip should occur late enough so that the gymast can reach support leaning forward with shrugged shoulders. The most common difficulty with this skill is an early kip which finishes in a vertical support. The cast then goes backwards and not upwards
  • A lot of cast handstands need to be worked so this part of the skill is not a struggle. In working cast handstand sets be sure to work cast to handstand, lower back to the bar, as the negative motion greatly helps develop strength.
  • The gymnast needs to finish the kip with their shoulders forward, and feet down so they can excecute the cast. If the gymnast is completely open upon completion of the kip there's no where to go for the cast.