Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Poll: Which current gymnasts do you think will show up at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London?

I've got my eye on Jordyn Wieber. If only Lizzy LeDuc would be old enough by 2012... *sigh* She turned 13 not too long ago, and she's still a junior, but I expect to see her in the future. Both great little gymnasts.

What do you guys think? Who you expect to see? Leave your answer in a comment!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Where can I get good leotards?

This is a question I have answered repeatedly on Y!A. The simplest answer is, you should be able to find them at your gym! If not, look for leotards at other gyms during meets. If you are not competitive, or if you just would rather order online, you can go to...







And my favorite...
This site is cool because it allows you to customize your leotards with your choice of colors, materials, and crystals. You'll need a coach to help you order it.

Or you can look at any of the other sites you can find just by searching Google :) Sometimes there are ads for discount leos posted on this blog, as well, since they get really expensive sometimes.

Friday, June 25, 2010

How to get your splits down faster

I can't get my splits down, and it's hurting my gymnastics. What can I do?

The simple answer is... stretch! Stretch at gymnastics, stretch at home, stretch at your friend's house... wherever. One trick I used to use is called contractions. No, not the kind you have when you're in labor, but I suppose the word is used because it is based on a similar concept. Contractions work like this: Go into your splits as far as you can, even if that means you're a foot off the ground. Now squeeze your leg muscles as hard as you can, so it's almost as if you can hold yourself off the ground not with your hands, but with your legs. Hold this longer than you think you can. 30 seconds, maybe. Then relax your muscles and slide a little bit further into your splits. If you've done it correctly, you'll find that it seems much easier now to split further than you could before. Do this every day until you feel confident with your splits, just be careful not to overdo it. Pulled muscles = bad, successful splits = good.

Q: How quickly can I move up?

How quickly can I move up levels?

I get this question a lot. And the answer is: It depends on the person and his/her individual pace in the sport. It will be easier to move forward quickly in the earlier levels. Some girls only take a few months to progress from level 2 to level 3, then from 3 to 4. Level 8s, 9s, and 10s, however, might spend one, two, or even three years perfecting their skills at that level. Generally, a gymnast will spend one year per competitive level - The competitive season for performing at that level, and the summer for preparing routines and skills for the next. However, there is no rule that says you must advance at any particular speed; if you want to compete two levels in one season, that's just fine, but it's not commonly found.

So you think you're too old to start gymnastics?

Q: Am I too old to start gymnastics now?

So maybe it wouldn't be the best idea for my 80-year-old grandmother to get involved in gymnastics... But too many of you out there worry about being "too old." If you are 13, 14, 15, or even 20, you are NOT too old to get into recreational gymnastics classes. I REPEAT: You are NOT too old! You may be older than the other kids in your class, but don't let that hold you back. The gym I used to go to held adult (18+) recreational gymnastics classes once or twice a week for people who decided a little later on that they wanted to try out the sport, and they all had a great time. Just because you're a little older doesn't mean that you can't be successful and enjoy the sport. Sure, you probably won't be an Olympian or even a level 7, but who cares! Do what you love, no matter what. I strongly encourage anyone and everyone to get involved in this sport. If nothing else, it will earn you a great work ethic, a new leotard, and some wonderful friends.