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Video:How to Do a Gymnastics Strength Workout

with Talya Vexler

Ever wonder how gymnasts get the most incredible physiques? Complete one round of gymnastics strength conditioning and you'll find out. In this sports video from About.com learn how to do a proper gymnastics strength work out.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Do a Gymnastics Strength Workout

Hi! This is Talya Vexler for About.com, and today we'll talk about doing a gymnastics strength workout.

Conditioning #1: Leg Lifts

There are tons of gymnastics strength workout you can do, but today, we're going to give you 7 exercises that we like to do at our gym every day. The first exercise is a leg lift. We practice this against a wall at our gym, as opposed to just doing it from a free-hanging bar. Normally, we do about three sets of ten every day with our girls.

Conditioning #2: Hollow Rock

The next exercise is a hollow rock, or rock hollow. We do these every day at our gym, at least a hundred at a time. If they can't do 100, they can do sets of 25, or even sets of 10. You want to make sure that the gymnast is keeping a round shape, with no gaps, keeping her lower back on the floor, and keeping her arms straight.

Conditioning #3: Walking in a Handstand

The next exercise that we do is walking in a handstand. These should be done against a floor mat, forwards and backwards, and sideways as well. You want to make sure that your gymnast can first hold a handstand before they attempt walking. If they have poor form when they're walking, then it's better to practice handstands against the wall separately before they walk.

Conditioning #4: Push-Up Variations

The next exercise is the good old fashioned push-up. In gymnastics, we do a ton of push-ups, but we do them a little differently than you would see in a regular gym. At the top of the push-up, you always want to make sure that you push up into that hollow body position that's so important in gymnastics. You can vary this position by putting your arms in a triangle position, with the arms placed wider on the floor, or if the gymnast is not quite strong enough, by doing them on their knees.

Conditioning #5: Calf Raises

Next, we have the calf raise. You can do this just about anywhere in your gym, on the edge of a mat or a stair, and we practice this every day for ankle strength, injury prevention, and to have those nice high releves when you do turns and you're walking on the beam. You want to make sure that your gymnast is pushing down on the ball of their foot and not letting their ankles roll out to the side so their weight is on their pinkie toe. This is also known as a sickled foot.

Conditioning #6: Press Handstand from a Seated Position

The pressed handstand from a seated position is a huge milestone for a gymnast to achieve. To continue to gain strength after you successfully complete one handstand, you can try multiple handstands in a row.

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