GYMNASTICS HOMEWORK: BACKBEND
Today’s blog goes over the backbend! As seen in the video, the backbend is one of the fundamental skills in gymnastics, especially for the floor exercise. Students will need to have a grasp of the backbend to be able to front walkover, back walkover, and back handspring.
To start off, lay on your back on a soft surface, with either a mat or pillow to protect your head. Bend your arms and legs, so that your knees and elbows are pointed up. As soon as you are ready, lift your hips off the ground, and push your arms and legs straight. When extended fully, your body should be in the shape of a C, like a bridge! Hold this position for ten seconds or so, and lower yourself down slowly, rest, and repeat!
The main points of pressure during the backbend are the ankles, wrists, back, and shoulders. When practicing this skill, these specific areas may become weak or sore, so be conscious of that, always taking the time to stretch them the opposite direction. If you are not able to fully extend to the bridge, try to do a seal stretch to loosen up your back. If you struggle with lifting your head off of the ground, work on arm exercises such as push-ups to make it easier for you.
If you are still struggling with the backbend, another option is to start on an elevated surface such as a couch or bed, with your head hanging off the edge. Have your arms already fully extended, pushing against the ground. Bend your knees, as you did before, and extend your hips, head, and back off of the raised surface.
Since the majority of this skill is flexibility, don’t be discouraged if it takes a while to get fully extended. If you would like to see more videos of gymnastics homework, check out this list!