Gymnastics Competition Safety


It is difficult with the compulsory meet structure and long competition sessions to keep thoroughly warmed up for each event. It is very possible that your official warm-up and competition may be hours apart, especially on your last events. For this reason, you must re-warm-up informally before each event.

The goals of a warm-up are to increase body temperature, thoroughly stretch and physically prepare to perform. Almost always there is some area, even if it is just the seating area for gymnasts, that you can jog in place, stretch and even warm up some stationary skills.

Stay Warm

In between competition events, unless it is very hot, it is probably a good idea to wear your warm-up suit to help keep from chilling and tightening up your muscles.

Have Your Skills Prepared

As far as gymnastics skills go, you should already be prepared from many months of practice to compete and warming up particular skills right before competing is not really necessary to do well and be safe, especially at the compulsory level. Skill warm-ups are just to get used to the equipment and its particular orientation in the gym.

Compete Only Skills You Have Mastered

While it is not usually a problem at the compulsory level, you should not be competing any potentially dangerous skills which you have not already performed by yourself. A competition situation is not the best place to find out whether you can do a skill or not. Sometimes gymnasts compete in meets and do better than they do in practice. Sometimes they do not. You can’t count on making a skill in a meet based on the extra adrenaline competition may give to you. Sometimes it helps, sometimes it doesn’t. Look to your coach for advice in this area. They will tell you what you are safe to do.

Depend On Yourself, Not On A Spot

Most coaches will not spot or even stand there for skills during a competition. Sometimes coaches will agree to do this for safety reasons or to give psychological support.

Don’t Count on a Spot in Meets

Even if your coach agrees to stand there, the rules prohibit them from touching you without you receiving a deduction. Their inclination is going to be to let you do it on your own.

They’re Not There

You should adopt the same attitude and perform the skill as if they weren’t there. Do not depend, either physically or psychologically, on them for help with the skill. Do it on your own to the best of your ability, without expecting any help.

Focus and Concentrate

There are many distractions at a gymnastics competition, both mental and physical. There are usually more people in the gym than you are used to in practice. Equipment and the set-up of equipment are different. You may feel more pressure to perform well. You may have to adapt to the effects of traveling to the meet. There are any number of internal and external distractions. To be safe, you must shut out the distractions and concentrate on what you need to do to successfully do your routines.

Be Aware Of The Affects Of Adrenaline And Be Prepared For Overdoing Some Skills

Sometimes the excitement of being in a competition gives you extra power, especially in vault, tumbling or dismounts. Be aware that this might happen and be ready to quickly adapt to the effects of the extra power and air time so that you can have safe landings.


No comments yet.

Leave a Reply