Front flip with hands
Part 1Learning the Motions
- Stretch first. No matter what gymnastics move you're doing, you need to stretch first. You should at least stretch your ankles, hamstrings, neck, and wrists.
- To stretch your ankles, sit down on the floor. Prop one ankle up on the other knee, and rotate it in a circle a few times. Do the same with the other ankle.
- Stretch your hamstrings by pulling one leg up behind you while standing. Try to tighten your butt muscles while doing it. Switch to the other leg.
- Rotate your wrists and neck to get them stretched out.
- Practice your jump first by doing a punch. Run a couple of steps forward. On the last step, bring both feet together, and punch into the ground, pushing yourself into the air.
- You should land on the balls of your feet.
- As you push yourself into the air, lift your hands to your ears, so that you are keeping your core tight.
- You're not trying to flip right now. You're just practicing the jump.
- When you land, bend your knees slightly.
- Practice with a knee lift. Once you get the punch down, add in a knee lift. As you jump up, pull your knees up into the air.
- As you come back down, straighten back out.
- Bend your knees as you land.
- Try practicing on a trampoline. One safe way to practice these steps is on your trampoline in the back yard. You can go through each of the steps in this section on your backyard trampoline to get the feeling of the moves.
- When you start out on the trampoline, make sure you are tight. That is, keep your head steady and your body straight. You don't want your head and body flopping around, as that can lead to injuries.
- Start by getting a bounce going by jumping a little forward into a punch. Once you've got the punch down, try adding in the knee lift.
- Decide you're ready to do a front flip. Before doing a front flip, you want to make sure you're getting as much height as possible. Really punch off the ground when you're jumping. In addition, it's really best to work with someone if you've never done it before. Try a gymnastics or parkour gym to get some tips. In addition, you'll have access to things like spring floors at these gyms, making it a whole lot easier.
- Realize that if you're trying to do gymnastics as an adult, the consequences can be more severe than when you're learning as a kid. That is, as a kid, you only weigh 40 or 50 pounds when starting out in gymnastics, plus you're a lot more flexible. As an adult, you weigh a lot more, and you don't bend as easily. Therefore, it's easier for you to get injured.
- You probably shouldn't try a front flip if you have back or knee issues, at least not without consulting a doctor first.
Part 2Doing a Running Front Flip
- Run forward. You only need to run a few steps to get your momentum going. Four or five steps should do it, though you can do more to gain more height and power once you learn the basics. It's best to work in a gym that has a spring floor and spotters if you can.
- Leap into a jump. On the last step, leap forward, bringing your feet together so you land on both of them in a jump. In addition, you need to lean your torso slightly backwards, so that your momentum goes up rather than straight forward.
- As you're leaping into the jump, lift your arms. Your arms should end up by your ears as you're jumping, as that keeps your core muscles tight.
- Pushing your momentum upward gives your more height. In turn, that gives you longer to complete the flip.
- In addition, push your butt out as you lift off from the ground. This move can help you get your spin started.
- Keep your head in place. Until you tuck your head in, your head should be facing forward. The easiest way to maintain this position is to find a spot on the wall to stare at as you go into your front flip. Keep your eyes there until you begin your tuck.
- Use your arms for momentum. Your arms can help you get started on your rotation. As you punch into the air, your arms should go slightly back. When you move to start your tuck, throw your arms forward. That will help start your rotation.
- Tuck your body. To push yourself into rotation, tuck your body in. Grab your shins just below your knees, tucking yourself into a ball, which continues your rotation.
- Make sure to grab your legs just below your knees in the little hollow there. That way, you pull your legs in without pushing your knee forward.
- You are also going to be throwing your upper body down towards the ground.
- Also, push your head down. Your chin should be at your chest so that you tuck tightly.
- Don't hold too long. When you tuck, it's tempting to hold on to your shins for an extended period. However, if you hold on for too long, you'll end up rotating too much. You might get lucky and do a double front flip, but you also might come crashing down without landing on your feet.
- Straighten out. To finish the front flip, you straighten out your body as you come around. Basically, you are un-tucking yourself from your flipping position. Try to shove your leg down towards the ground as you come around, rather than kicking outward, so you don't land on your butt.
- As you land, bend your knees so that they take some of the shock.
- In gymnastics, you generally finish with your arms up.
- Decide how you want to finish. You can stick the landing, meaning you don't move. You can also run a few steps forward after you flip, as a way to deal with the momentum. Finally, you can use the momentum to move into another tumble skill.
- To move into another skill, lunge forward on one leg as you come out of the flip.
- Basically, it's like continuing to run, but instead of taking steps, you use the momentum to go into your next move.
- Make sure your arms are up by your ears so you're ready for the next move.
- Practice on a running trampoline. One way you can practice the running front flip is on a running trampoline. Most gymnastics gyms have these trampolines.
- To use a running trampoline, you simply run down the trampoline. Do a punch at the end, and then flip into the mats.
- If you don't have access to a running trampoline, you can still practice your front flip on your trampoline. Simply get started jumping, then treat a jump as a punch, meaning you rotate into your front flip. Extend as you come out the other side and keep jumping.