What is Artistic Gymnastics?
Not only is Artistic Gymnastics an exciting and beautiful sport to be involved in but it is also considered the foundation of all sports. One moment you're upside down, spinning around a bar meters off the ground. The next you are demonstrating perfect balance, somersaulting along a beam no wider than the length of an iPhone!
Artistic Gymnastics can significantly develop the learning of the ABC's of physical activity - Agility, Balance, Coordination, and Speed and assist in the development of physical literacy.
Plato, Aristotle and Homer heartily advocated the strengthening qualities of gymnastic activity; the Greeks believed symmetry between the mind and body was possible only when physical exercise was coupled with intellectual activity. Gymnastics is an "all-body" as well as an "all-mind" sport providing children and adults with both physical and psychological benefits. Whatever your age or ability, it is never too late to get started with Artistic Gymnastics.
Women's Artistic Gymnastics (WAG) is the perfect sport to teach your daughter co-ordination and confidence, develop creativity and contribute to her general health and fitness. Women's Gymnastics is composed of four components as explained below:
Vaulting shows off the gymnast's athletic qualities, as the movement is performed after a run up of about 20 meters. The gymnast must put both hands on the horse. As far as marking is concerned, the judges will evaluate the complexity of the movement, the position of the body, and the landing, which must be perfect.
The uneven bars are by far the most spectacular apparatus of the competition. Imagine the strength, the precision, the rhythm, the concentration and the courage that these girls need to perform their exercises with such simplicity. The gymnast moves from one bar to the other, alternating grip changes, releases and re-grasps, saltos and changes of direction with circular swings.
The beam has a certain magic about it. Many people wonder how the gymnasts manage to perform on an apparatus where balance, acrobatic sequences with or without flight elements, gymnastic jumps and turns all play a role. It is an exercise not only of flexibility, but also of concentration, rhythm and expression.
They fly, do pirouettes, touch the floor and then leap high again into the air. This exercise is the public's favorite and they are ready to clap as soon as the music begins. The floor is the area where a gymnast can fully express all her grace, her personality, and her technique, combining acrobatics, gymnastics and dance.
Men's Artistic Gymnastics (MAG) on the other hand channels masculine energy to develop power, strength and control. Mastery of the six apparatus requires the skillful combination of flips, balance, stretch, spin and landings.
Floor - an exercise in pure acrobatics, alternating between powerful tumbling series and the composure necessary for balance and strength elements.
Pommel Horse - routines mostly involve circles of the legs together and pendulous, scissor swings with the legs split, spectacularly combining these movements while turning and travelling along the horse.
Rings - difficult combination of strength and swinging elements requiring control, strength and balance in the forward and backward swings and strength holds.
Vault - a 25m sprint creates the necessary power to explode from the board before the dynamic push off the table, to generate greater height for rotations and flight before landing on the other side.
Parallel Bars - routines require swinging above and below the bars with acrobatic flight, changes of directions and precise balances, ending in a dramatic dismount off the side or the end of the bars.
Horizontal Bar - a spectacular apparatus, largely due to the combination and variation of giant swings, acrobatic releases and re-grasp flight elements. The high dismounts from the bar allows the gymnast to show his acrobatic talents and landing prowess.