Full Turns on beam

Parents... Coaches... Judges... Gymnasts...
DON'T LURK... Join The Discussion!

Members See FEWER Ads!
Join for FREE!
Not open for further replies.


Oct 4, 2009
Ok I am at a loss on this skill. I can do the turn and all but i always over rotate and can't seem to control it. Any tips?
Try standing on one foot on the beam in releve in the turn shape, and holding it for 5 seconds, and then step out like you finished the turn. Until you can do that easily, you won't be able to turn well. Also, try to look for the end of the beam when you go around. One thing you can do to try to control it is start the turn already on one foot, and just pull in your arm, go up on toe, and turn. (eliminating the step into the turn) How are your full turns on floor? Good luck! Full turns on beam are ALWAYS hard! Lots of repetitions will help you!
  • Like
Reactions: 1 person
same thing happens to me. for me i would go to fast and not control it if i was wearing my beam shoes, but to slow because of my sweaty feet, so i comprimized by adding a bit of chalk and it helped :)
I have the same problem! I used to be a figure skater, so, uh, I KNOW how to spin fast...we do a lot of drills for turns, like half turn, hold on toe, lock, pivot and holding on toe in passé with arms in 5th. We have to make our full turns to a lock which helps you control it...sometimes I kick out a little early which helps me slow down to lock.
I think its a common skill that folks have issues with. Last Olympics my DD even pointed out to me that top gymnasts were messing this up so it must be hard. its a move she struggles with too. All I can say to her is stay tight and consintrate on what your body is or isn't doing. I know once I started video taping her she could see better what her mistakes were and are. It did help her alot. Maybe you could have someone video you so you can see too.
Lock = you end on high toe with both feet on the beam, as close together as you can get them, like for a pivot turn. It's just to help you control it, instead of plié-ing out of it and maybe being off-balance.
  • Like
Reactions: 1 person
Believe me, I KNOW how difficult this skill can be. I have always either over rotated, or cut it short. What I found that helps me is preparing like I would go for it, step straight up on toe, and hold it. This makes sure you are straight up, not leaning sideways or forwards or backwards. Also, do lots of half turns. They seem simple, but they helped me learn control. Make sure you do LOTS of full turns each practice and it will come!
my problem isn't i am going to slow though, its that i go to fast

I think people "rush" through their turns because they are afraid they will not get all the way around. I have a dance background and I used to be able to do guadruple turns. Of course, I was wearing jazz shoes or ballet slippers and dancing on hardwood floors. Nonetheless, I think no matter where you are performing the turn, there are still key elements to remember. A single turn is really very short. You need only put very little force, if any, in performing the turn. Don't think about getting around. Instead, think of pulling up, and envision there is a straight line going from your feet to your head, keep stomach tight and just use one arm to get you around. In dance, spotting is very important. As you prepare for your turn, look at a spot where you want to end your turn. Once you begin your turn, look for that spot again. Gymnastbeth's "drill" suggestion is very good. It will not only strengthen your ankles but will give you a more controlled turn. Turning has more to do with balance than turning itself.

Here is a link for a turn drill. Tammy Biggs suggests two spots. I only do one.
YouTube - Full Turn on Beam - Tammy Biggs

Here is another link I love. At 2:50 Betty Okino does a beautiful triple turn on beam. Notice how she tucks her butt in to maintain a straight a line as possible. On addition, notice how little preparation/force she needs to get her around. You can't tell she is preparing to make multiple turns.
YouTube - nadia comaneci and bela karolyi

Good luck.
  • Like
Reactions: 1 person
my teammate also has a lot of trouble on this skill to there are a couple things you can do. one is starting in heal snap position and turning in that postition. If you dont know how what that is here is a video YouTube - Best Level 5 Beam Routines (it is the first turn in the vdeo) Another thing is just go SLOWW! that is what helped my teammate. She just thought of barely tuning at ALL. ALso make sure you pull up on toe right away. I hope this was a little bit helpful.
I can do the first turn in the video as that was in my routine last year and i do it very nice and in control. I found spotting has really helped (on a line anyway)
I've been able to do a full turn on beam since my first adult gymnastics class. Reason: I'm a dancer! Here are some of the biggest problems I notice:
1. back is arched and ribcage is open (hips should be tucked under, ribcage closed, chest up, and shoulders relaxed and down)
2. arms are too high (for arms in first position...maybe called middle in gym?) or too far back (for arms in high 5th...called crown in gymnastics I think)
I personally think full turns should always be taught with arms in first position to start with because it's much easier to maintain the posture in #1. When doing full turns with arms in crown, pretty much everyone has their arms too far back. That pulls your shoulders back, which pulls you off balance because your shoulders aren't over your hips. It also opens your ribcage and usually causes your back to arch a little.

Also, as an additional note, too much tension in the upper body is what causes you to fall off beam (and I think LaPrise Harris talked about this at the 2010 GAT convention...she was a dancer too!)

I think there are so many issues with turns and leaps in gymnastics that could easily be fixed with good ballet training.
  • Like
Reactions: 1 person
I always have trouble with these as well. Other than what everyone else said, my coach always tells me to do two half turns. Think of it as a half and a half. So spot the other end of the beam and then spot the finish again. This will help you find where you are therefore a more spot on finish.
Not open for further replies.