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First gymnastics lesson today!
So. I am a total newbie at gymnastics. I've been figure skating for 2 years and I'm so happy to get a chance to do this sport. Anyway I'm currently in a "Beginner" class with my friend, and two 12 year olds. The two girls have been in the class for like, 2 years and my friend and I have no experience at all. Vault is extremely annoying. She kept saying HANDS FIRST and I have no idea what that means. She just excpeted my friend and I to copy what the other girls were doing and it was just frustrating. I suck at bars but iI love them soo much. I know it's sad but I was having such and hard time with pullovers so I feltreally inferior but whatever. They are so much fun. But vault, no. haha. What was my point? Oh yeah, do gyms offer private lessons, because I like knowing exactly what I need to do. I learn from people tellin gme what to do best. And I love gymnastics and I don't want to just wing it every time. For the pullovers(yes I know they're easy) I just can't seem to get the momentum for the pulling over. I'm 5"7 so that might be the issue.. but oy. It was just way overload for me and I think I would do better with one on one coaching. just wondering if that works and how much it would cost. And any excercises /stretches for you back would be nice. Oh and HIII. I'm Laura and I'm 16, I'll be 17 in February and I started skating in 2005 becuase I was sick. And this past June we found out it was lyme disease, so that's not fun. But um. Hi! Andthanks if you can help! ps. Would running help at all? I think my leg strength is very very good, but my core and upper body strength stink. I do pushups and crunches and leg lifts every day but it's not seeming to help.
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Hey, welcome to gymchat! And gymnastics! Gymnastics is really lots of fun! :D For pullovers: don't worry about your height being an issue! Even for giants (going around and around the high bar) where you have to be careful not to hit your toes on the low bar, you can do them the straddle way where before getting to the low bar in your swings you straddle (like middle split) your legs. --> what helps to get your pullover: strong abs muscles and also strong arm muscles - the legs muscle will help you when you do the pullover the way where you start with your feet on the mat and push off with one leg first (which is the way how most people learn it, rather than the harder ways of doing legs together, or pull-up first and then legs over with no push off the mat - for that you really need really strong abs muscles and arm muscles!!), but you still need strong abs and arms muscles too. Conditioning that helps the most probably for getting your pullover: push-ups, pull-ups, and v-ups (which are really good to get your kip, which is the next step!) To make the push-ups harder you can put your feet up higher like on some mats when you do them, to make the pull-ups harder you can add 5-lb pair weights to you ankles or your waist (they're ankle weights, but you can connect the velcro together and put it around your waist). Leg lifts are also good for abs - do you get them all the way up yet, or like horizontal? Takes time to get them all the way up usually, so don't worry. You probably have good leg muscles from ice skating right? For private lessons, you could take a look before or after your class at the different coaches when they are coaching and see who you think you would like to work with - it's usually open to whoever you want to ask. Personally, I like to have coaches who I can trust to spot me and also who are experienced and know what they're doing - so that's usually the head coach or higher level coaches, and male coach, especially if you're not a little kid, you know, who like everyone can spot! :D Private lessons cost differently depending on where you are, but are like around $40-$50 per hour, maybe $60 I think. If you ask for multiple privates, like for more than just once, maybe they would be open to giving you a better rate. There's a thread on private lessons/costs on this message board actually. I heard about people starting ice skating because they were sick and it helped, like Scott Hamilton. What's the reason, the fresh ice air with exercise? p.s. running would help with stamina for tumbling and routines, etc. and of course for vault :D Conditioning is really important and can help you get your skills a lot faster. ...and so is good coaching of course! :D
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Hi Laura, welcome! :D Here's the thread on the private lessons cost: http://www.gymchat.com/messageboards/viewtopic.php?t=203 For vault, maybe by "hands first" your coach means you're not hollow and like are going with your knees or legs or stomach first towards the vault. Also, ask her if the vault board isn't too close to the vault for your height and for your jump and speed - they all matter in where to put the board. And also, if the board is too close to the vault, it won't let you reach for the vault and kind of will make you scrunch up instead and then not go with hands first like she says. Don't be shy to ask her what she means if you don't get it! :D Are you using a vault table or like a vault mat, and then you land on your back after handstand (which is how you usually start to learn vault, and also to get some reps.).
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Yeah for vault we just went straight to the actual vault. That was really scary for me haha. We were doing straddle jumps and I actually just landed in a split on the vault once.. the other coaches that were watching started laughing and said, "Now that's a gymnast!" I thought it was funny. Yeah I have no ab muscles at all.. so I guess I need to fix that. Yeah I've been doing leg lifts and I can get my legs to actually touch my head when they go up so that's not really a problem. I had a feeling that my skating wouldn't help with the gymnastics so much because it's mostly core and upper body strength, neither of which I have much of. Thanks for the quick help you two!
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I wouldn't bother with private lessons. They are very expensive (often $40-$60 per hour) and you are in a very small class with only 4 gymnasts so you are probably getting just as much from these classes as you would in a private and you are only paying a fraction of the cost. At first it will be difficult to learn all the new skills and terminology but you will amazed at how fast you progress. I would give it a few months before you decide that you 'suck' at anything. You are a beginner, you are not supposed to be able to do it all yet, thats why you are taking beginner classes. Before long you will probably be running rings around the 2 12 years olds. Don't worry about your height it is actually quite common in most levels of gymnastics to be that tall. Of course there are very few elite level gymnasts who are over 5' 3" and these are the main people you hear about in the sport. But there are a large number of competitive gymnasts who are tall and they are incredible. Earlier this year I was watching a level 10 competition and most of the girls would have been around your height and they could do their skills with very little trouble. Pullovers are a relatively simple move but they are not that easy at first. You will get them soon, don't expect to be able to do them on your first lesson, very few people can. The fact that you are even at the point where you are trying them on your first lesson is a great start.
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