active flexibility

Mary Lee Tracy.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Active flexibility is strength at the end range. This is “dynamic active” flexibility. If the gymnasts holds at the end range it’s “static active” flexibility training.

flexibility – wall, panel mat drills

Tammy Biggs.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

training foot extension

Chris Silcox posted some drills. It is trainable.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Nile Wilson on flexibility

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

single leg conditioning

For tumbling, leaps and aerials. Tammy Biggs.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Simone Biles – stride splits

Simone is surprisingly flexible for a power gymnast.

female gymnasts – height / weight

Uncle Tim has been on a roll lately. All Artistic coaches (MAG and WAG) should be following his blog.

He crunched some numbers from European Games Baku with some surprising resultsDo Height and Weight Matter in Women’s Gymnastics?

• height wasn’t a statistically significant predictor for E scores in Baku

• weight wasn’t a statistically significant predictor for E scores

• neither height nor weight was a statistically significant predictor for D scores

* If the data supplied by the delegations is correct, we have a wide range of heights and weights. We have someone as tall as Gabriela Janik (169 cm) and someone as short as Laura Jurca (140 cm). As for weight, we’re looking at weights from 35kg to 72kg.

He concludes with an overreaching statement: “Smaller isn’t better. Lighter isn’t better.”

That’s wrong, of course. Relative strength IS critical for success in women’s Gymnastics. Correlation is not causation, as every PhD knows. :-) 

There are many variables aside from height and weight.

You must be either strong or light. Ideally both. Being smaller and lighter make the acrobatic components easier. It’s a disadvantage for vault. A slight disadvantage on Bars.

Pan Am AA podium
Pan Am AA podium 2015

Still, the easiest way to become Olympic Champion is to be short, light and fast twitch.

It’s possible to win the Olympics at Nastia Liukin’s height 5ft 3in (1.60m), but ask her if Gymnastics is as easy for her as it is for the shorter girls.

But our good Uncle’s main point is important. I am convinced that height and weight (within the small range of female gymnasts who compete at the highest level) is not as critical as it once was. I’m not sure why.

ANTWERPEN, BELGIUM - OCTOBER 04:  (L-R)  Kyla Ross (silver medal) of USA, Simone Biles (gold medal) of USA and Aliya Mustafina (bronze medal) of Russia pose after the Womens All-Round Final on Day Five of the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships Belgium 2013 held at the Antwerp Sports Palace on October 4, 2013 in Antwerpen, Belgium.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
ANTWERPEN, BELGIUM – OCTOBER 04: (L-R) Kyla Ross (silver medal) of USA, Simone Biles (gold medal) of USA and Aliya Mustafina (bronze medal) of Russia pose after the Womens All-Round Final on Day Five of the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships Belgium 2013 held at the Antwerp Sports Palace on October 4, 2013 in Antwerpen, Belgium. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

related – height of male Olympic gymnastics champions