Do Your Level 6 Gymnasts Do Double Backs and Double Fronts?

Double Tuck

Double Tuck
As is the case with Yurchenko vaults, and many other high level optional skills, in order to learn difficult skills safely, it is essential to start the skill progressions early. The more months, and even years, that gymnasts spend going through the proper steps of progression, learning good technique, automating good habits and mastering all of the aspects of high level skills, the safer they will be and the better and more completely they will have mastered the skill.

High Level Optional Skills Take Time to Learn

One of the big errors so many coaches make is not to start working on skills until the summer before they expect their gymnasts to compete the skill. While this may work for low level coaches and A and B level skills, higher difficulty skills take more time to master. In fact, the more difficult the skill, the more time that skill takes to master.

High Level Optional Skills Take Long-Term Planning

Intelligent and successful training and coaching requires long-term planning. Coaches who expect to teach all their gymnasts high level optional skills must understand the all of the long-term steps of progression and begin them early. Then when it comes time to do the more difficult skills, their gymnasts have all the necessary prerequisites and training they need. And not only will they be able to learn the skills, but will be able to do so safely.

Video of Level 6 Compulsory Gymnasts Doing Double Backs into Pit

Now this is certainly not the first step of progression in teaching double backs, and this is not exactly the equipment set-up I would use first, but these Level 6 gymnasts are gaining valuable double back experience and air awareness. You can also see that all of the young gymnasts are well trained enough to be safe while doing this step in the double back progression. These are gymnasts who now have a chance to really become high level gymnasts and do double backs.

Double Backs and Double Front Training Both Need Long-Term Training

This is a video of a 7 year old gymnast doing her first double front into a loose foam pit. She rotates competently, and knows, where she is in the air, enough to open out of her tuck at the end. This is definitely an equipment set-up that I would use, because it easily provides the height to do the skill and a safe landing pit.

WARNING NOTE: Teach Your Gymnasts Open Knee Tucks for Safety On Double Fronts

The major error in this particular double front situation is that the gymnast is not using an open knee tuck position doing the double front. This closed knee tuck position has the risk of the gymnast smashing their knees into their face on the landing (it can really hurt, even in a loose foam pit), if they do not open or open out of the tuck at the right time. In the early learning stages of double fronts, gymnasts should all be doing open knee tucks.

 

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