While there are taller gymnasts, most of them are short. In fact, the USA team’s star athlete, Simone Biles is only 4’8”. No wonder why more and more people think gymnastics could really affect an individual’s body growth.
If you want to have a taller height, joining gymnastics might freak you out. But the scientific community itself isn’t completely sure.
Does gymnastics really stunts growth? Or, are gymnasts really just short? Answers might surprise you!
Gymnastics Growth Explained
Many parents were less thrilled about letting their kids join competitive gymnastics due to one reason – the sport would stunt their growth. That no matter how their children ready to take up new life plan, they don’t want their loved ones to do the risk. Well, that’s normal as parents.
Gymnastics is indeed a very intense sport. It takes hours performing complex moves and poses the risk of injury. There is also an extreme dieting pressure which can lead to a serious health threat. And yes it can greatly affect an individual’s growth.
Competitive sports like gymnastics might have a big impact on a teenager’s body. But it isn’t really the main source. Some gymnasts are hereditarily short. Studies also suggest that kid gymnasts can make it up when they surpass puberty and reach adulthood.
The Shocking Reality
Gymnastics is a few sports where being short is the most fortunate thing. A study shows that being small is beneficial for rotational skills such as somersaults. It is also proven that smaller people are more likely to excel than those with average heights, and they seem to win the career faster than those taller ones.
Knowing the fact that gymnasts are short not because of over-training but because shorter people are more welcome to get in will change your mind.
GYMNASTICS. How far do you know the word?
This breathtaking sport has been around for hundreds of years. But still it’s not everyone really knows about this thing the deepest. Gymnastics isn’t just all about exercises. That is something you will truly want to know.
Did you know?
#10: Gymnastics is not just for girls at a young age.
There have been so many people believe that you need to be young in order to succeed in the sport. But the 41-year-old featured gymnast namely Oksana of Uzbekistan proved that age isn’t really a big thing.
#9: Females with miss universe height are not allowed.
Artistic gymnastics is considered to be the sport with the shortest athletes (1.67 m for men, 1.55 m for women). It is not because of how they spent all the time in the bars, it is because only short and light people could get in.
#8: Perfect 10 scoring is no more used.
A/B score is the new system but many athletes and coaches have spoken up about disliking it.
#7: USSR holds the most medals in gymnastics in 1896.
In both men’s and women’s competitions, the Soviet Union racked it up. The Soviet Union no longer exists but they leave us the most amazing history.
#6: Gymnastics once have twin medalists.
The 2004 Olympics featured Paul and Morgan Hamm in which both of them received the silver medals and Paul won gold.
#5: No women are allowed to compete until the 1928 Amsterdam games.
Although some disciplines today are still gender-specific, at least girls aren’t anymore banned.
#4: Most elite gymnasts start their careers while in a toddler age.
No one is allowed to compete at the age of two but you can be an amazing performer when turned 16.
#3: Gymnastics is a practice for the war among the ancient Greeks.
No wonder why you see combat-related activities such as running, jumping, wrestling and boxing.
#2: An amazing gymnast’s gym also has an amazing smell.
This is something non-gymnasts may don’t like. It’s not probably every time but you can mostly smell sweat, chalk, and feet while you walk in.
And, last but the least…
#1: Long before leotards are born, ancient participants get to compete naked.
Yes, completely naked!
Gymnast people and those who wish they were got to understand gymnastics’ ups and downs. So which of these facts interest you the most? We’d like to hear your thoughts in the comments!
Legs are one of the most important gymnast body parts. It is specifically important for tumbling, jumping and many other moves.
When legs don’t have enough strength, it is impossible to get well-rounded balances. The same thing happens when gymnasts are unable to straighten their legs. A great leg form is essential to win a great score.
Are you a coach who always yells at gymnasts who can’t get their legs all the way straight? Are you a gymnast who has that frustrating legs and is incapable of making them straight? We’re here to help you make improvements.
Working on Leg Straightening Exercises
Step 1: Start with taps. You can work on this at the bars, beams or racks. While you have your one hand holding the bar, tap your one feet to the floor for about five to ten times. Do the same on the side and to the back. Do the same on the other leg.
Step 2: Do the mix. Jam on the front and back with one leg. Font and back for about five times. Make a quick turn. Then, do the same on the other side.
Step 3: Now, put your feet on the bar. Start with your right toe while having your arms sideward. Always encourage good posture. Lift up and down the toe very quick and aggressive.
Step 4: Turn to the side and lift, and lift. Turn front. Lift up and down. Do the same on the other side.
Step 5: This time, you have to stay away from the bar and stretch out to the floor. Sit with your body straight, put the legs forward. Make sure to place the legs on something higher such as a layer of mats.
Step 6: Do the straight leg taps on the floor. Start with the right foot. Hit the mat hard with the heels. You can do five to fifty lifts on each leg. Switch legs and then both legs.
Step 7: Work on the side with one bend knee. Lift up the heel on the mat and down. Turn and do the same on the other side. Sit up nice and straight. Make sure the shoulders are square. This is excellent, especially for the straddle jumps.
Step 8: Finally, lay down your stomach and work on the back. This is great for front layout twists and tumbling. Tap the left foot and the right. Then both.
It takes only a couple of stretching exercises to develop straight legs. Perform them correctly, focus on good form during skills and see the change!
Noticed that thick layer of leather on the gymnast’s hands? They are called gymnastics grips. While grips are not used by all gymnasts, many do, to protect their hands.
If you want your hands to be free from a mass of flaky, chapped skin, you need grips. You need this to avoid all those cuts and holes in palms. Read on and see how so.
Importance of Grips
Grips, from the name itself, can literally help for a better grip. It makes it easier for gymnasts to perform without worrying about rips, tears, calluses, and blisters. Athletes have to wear it when performing on various apparatus to simply enhance grip ability and reduce friction.
With grips, you don’t have to worry with:
A grip is made up of a wide leather strip with a wrist strap. It is used to cover and protect the palm of the hand and commonly has finger holes at the end. Others use sports tape or gauze, and powdered chalk as an alternative to grips to avoid slipping.
Different Types of Grips
Grips are all about safety and performance. Here are the types worth considering.
Dowel grips simply have dowel rods.
The rods can be:
It is used to help create a pocket in the leather in order for the bar or rail to fit. Grips with a dowel allow gymnasts to hold onto equipment stronger while performing those gravity-defying feats.
On the other hand, non-dowel grips come without dowel rods. This can be the less expensive type and is usually made of thinner leather. Since it provides no mechanical advantage for gripping, it is best used for practice or recreational gymnastics.
You can never perform at your best if your hands are hurt. Whether you’re an expert or it is your first time performing, you need grips. Your hands really need it!