For Coaches How to teach timing in cast hs clear hip hs

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ProudGymnast

Gymnast
Fan
Feb 16, 2021
72
I get the opportunity to assistant peer-coach level 6-7s, as a level 9, on one event of choice for an hour. I chose bars. This is just something fun my gym does in the higher levels as team bonding, and it always seems to be helpful, as the lower levels get been-there done-that advice and different tips then their normal coach has to offer.

Well lots of these gymnasts have the skills required (giant, clear hip hs, cast hs) but they struggle with connecting cast hs to clear hip hs for their low bar and high bar clear hip. They pretty much alternately drop in to far from the bar, to close, arch into it, etc. It looks like they pop it to handstand every once in a while, but aren't really sure how they do it.

I just remember I worked it a lot over the summer that I got it, it took trial and error. At this point they don't have consistent routines because of their cast hs clear hip hs, and meets are coming up very soon.

Is there any good drills for this skill? Or any sayings, or something else, to teach the timing?
 

Geoffrey Taucer

Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Jan 21, 2007
4,418
Baltimore, MD
Thanks! I think I'll put that drill to use :)
Hope it helps! Let me know how it goes!

The general idea is to emphasize a rigid body while dropping the shoulders back; the athlete should focus on trying to make the bar bend back, but without changing the body shape or shoulder angle. Elliot didn't do it in this video, but once the athlete gets the hang of it they can easily bounce on the mat (or use a mini tramp) and do multiple repetitions of this in a row fairly easily. The two main cues I use are 1) zero change in body position, 2) Try to break the bar or rip it out of the ground when you hit the mat.

Elliot emphasized the arch-snap in this a little more than I would; that sort of snap is great for a stalder or toe-on, but imo excessive for a free hip.
 
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ProudGymnast

Gymnast
Fan
Feb 16, 2021
72
Hope it helps! Let me know how it goes!

The general idea is to emphasize a rigid body while dropping the shoulders back; the athlete should focus on trying to make the bar bend back, but without changing the body shape or shoulder angle. Elliot didn't do it in this video, but once the athlete gets the hang of it they can easily bounce on the mat (or use a mini tramp) and do multiple repetitions of this in a row fairly easily. The two main cues I use are 1) zero change in body position, 2) Try to break the bar or rip it out of the ground when you hit the mat.

Elliot emphasized the arch-snap in this a little more than I would; that sort of snap is great for a stalder or toe-on, but imo excessive for a free hip.
Thank you, I will! I never thought about keeping tension on the bar, but I see how it creates an opportunity for a strong open to handstand.

Do you think I could progress this drill to a jump straddle cast handstand, or just cast handstand, into it? Would it have the same effect for them?

Another question. What should the head position be in the clear hip? Do you teach it, or just let the gymnasts find it themselves?
 

Geoffrey Taucer

Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Jan 21, 2007
4,418
Baltimore, MD
Thank you, I will! I never thought about keeping tension on the bar, but I see how it creates an opportunity for a strong open to handstand.

Do you think I could progress this drill to a jump straddle cast handstand, or just cast handstand, into it? Would it have the same effect for them?

Another question. What should the head position be in the clear hip? Do you teach it, or just let the gymnasts find it themselves?

I prefer not to teach a free hip from a high cast until they already pretty much have the hang of it. The bulk of the power shouldn't come from the cast, but from the drop; coming from near handstand just makes it more complicated in the early stages. With proper technique, an athlete should be able to clearhip to handstand from a horizontal cast, or maybe even lower.

I tend not to focus too heavily on head position in this skill. To me, the head position is only important inasmuch as it affects the chest position; if the chest stays hollow it doesn't really matter where the head is, so I tend to just focus on that. But there certainly is an argument to be made for emphasizing head neutral or forward, and it probably wouldn't hurt for the athletes to drill the skill holding something under their chin; just keep in mind that if the head is too far forward it makes it harder to fully extend the shoulders to handstand.

One other thing that I really like for free hips, if you have a strap bar available, is to train it from a back uprise. If the gymnast practices back uprise clearhip handstand, it tends to force them to really get that aggressive drop, and get accustomed to initiating the clearhip with the shoulders and chest behind the bar, rather than above it. They don't actually need a strong back uprise for this -- in fact, the weaker the uprise, the more they are forced to compensate with excellent clearhip technique.

Hope this helps!
 
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