Bill Sands articles

Dr. Bill Sands is now posting some of his research on Advanced Study of Gymnastics. For example:

Vault Board Take Offs – What’s with the “Target” on the Top?

Puzzles and Paradoxes – Gymnastics


He found that Spring Boards vary greatly. That the best place on the Board to jump for each gymnast, for each vault, is often NOT the place on the Board coaches expect.

That’s a very interesting finding. It’s well worth clicking through.

His article includes a screen grab from a video of Sang Lan’s vault from the 1998 Goodwill Games NYC. The one where she was paralyzed. :-(

I’d always heard that no video of that vault existed. It does.

related –

Dr. Sands is asking coaches to submit information on Gymnastics Injury.

Triple Cork – Sport Science

John Brenkus and the Sport Science team examines the physics behind one of the most difficult tricks in snowboarding.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Does that all look correct to you?

John Brenkus has voiced over erroneous biomechanics in the past. He thinks that’s a double twist. :-)

Winter X Games 2015 Aspen begins today.

mechanics – feather vs bowling ball

Compare the two falling with air resistance. And then in a vacuum.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

(via iflscience)

Kelli Hill – kip cast handstand

Click PLAY or watch it on Facebook. The YouTube version is geoblocked for some nonsensical reason.

male gymnasts better than female at landing

Male gymnasts are, as a group, far more skilled at landing.

That’s partly strength. Partly technique.

Uchimura STICK

Compare Uchimura’s soft-as-a-cat landing to this surprisingly typical WAG landing.

Aliya landing

What Aliya did on that Beam dismount was to “punch’ on landing, instead of bringing impact forces to zero. She had no controlled landing. WAG judges are far too lenient on landing deductions (aside from the stupid ‘chest low’ rule). WAG gives very little reward to excellent landings.

Dr. George advises the gymnast see the landing as soon as possible. Reduce forces to zero by absorbing over time and distance.

open on landing
Leg Impact and Landing

USA WAG has added a 0.1 “stick” bonus for 2014. Let’s see if that helps. Gummi points out that the stick bonus may also result in more injuries in competition, especially on twisting landings like Amanar.

related – Coaching Youth Gymnastics by USA Gymnastics: SAFE landings

(via wogymnastika)

___ Update:

Here is Aliya landing that dismount in the Olympics. Quite a bit better.

Aliya Beam dismount

(via wogymnastika)

SAFE landings

Coaching Youth GymnasticsA safe landing is one where the body is at least risk of injury. And where impact forces are brought to zero in the most efficient, consistent ways.

I disagree with this next excerpt from Coaching Youth Gymnastics by USA Gymnastics:

… Straight spine to keep the neck stable and prevent falling forward

No bending forward at the waist …

This is not a good landing.


The spine is a shock absorber. The gymnast should use ‘trunk flexion / extension’ to absorb force.

This next excerpt also makes no sense to me:

Arms extended to the front, straight and level with the heart in order to keep chest up on the landing


Arms should be relaxed, slightly bent at the elbow, wider than shoulder width to help balance. Gymnasts should land as softly as possible. Like a cat. Like this cat. :-)


There’s no reason to keep the chest up other than to keep some judge happy.

When will this book be next edited?

USAG Safe Landing

If you’d like to see the source of those excerpts, see them on the Human Kinetics site.

272 pages © 2011Book or eBook – $19.95

Australia adopts Championship Gymnastics

Good news from one of our advertisers:

Championship Gymnastics: Biomechanical Techniques for Shaping Winners has been adopted by Gymnastics Australia …, as the compulsory textbook for their course accreditation programs throughout the country. This applies specifically to the Advanced, Advanced Silver, and High Performance Courses (Course Levels 3-5).

more information

related – Australian WAG Levels Program revision DRAFT