WAG Kip Tips

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TheXcelMom

Proud Parent
Apr 14, 2022
38
My DD 11 has been trying to mount the low bar with a glide kip for months.
Sometimes she gets it. Sometimes she can't do it.
Generally, she's not the kind to muscle her way up onto the bar. She keeps her arms straight.
She knows the form and the shapes, but it seems like she's not understanding the mechanics/physics of where the force is supposed to go.
Do you know any good videos that explain the physics and geometry of the kip?
 

MuggleMom

Proud Parent
Dec 22, 2016
809
Virginia
This helped me (many moons ago) and helped my kid as well. Its like putting on pants-- you bring your toes to the bar and pull all the way up to your hips. You can practice it at home with a broom you lie on your back with a stick (like a broom or something) above your head and bring your toes to the broom then put on your pants to sit up. The pants analogy always worked well I thought. If you start pulling your legs away from the bar to soon it messes up the mechanics and actually pulls your momentum away from the bar.

Here is the drill at like the 3:15 mark and whats great is you can do it at home.

 
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Geoffrey Taucer

Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Jan 21, 2007
4,504
Baltimore, MD
I don't have a video, but the underlying physics aren't too complicated, and they're the same for every skill on bars (there is one complicating factor that I'll be leaving out here, but it can be ignored at this stage). Every single bars skill that ever has or ever will be performed can be thought of like this:

If the hips are far away from the bar, that's a high-energy position, and if they're close to the bar, that's a low-energy position. High-energy positions build up a lot of momentum on the way down, but spend a lot of momentum on the way up; obviously, low-energy positions are the reverse of this. Thus, you can increase power by getting the hips farther away from the bar on the way down and closer on the way up, and you can decrease power by getting close to the bar on the way down and far on the way up.

Congratulations: you now know 90% of everything there is to know about bars.

So let's look at how this works in a kip. The first thing you need to understand is that a kip is an optical illusion; it looks like it happens in the front swing, but actually the entire skill happens on the way back.
The athlete should try to be as extended as possible as she reaches the end of her glide swing, so the hips are as far from the bar as possible. The kip itself starts in the exact instant where her glide swing stalls at its peak; at this moment, the athlete should bring her toes towards the bar (while keeping the hips far away) as she starts swinging back down. Ideally the hips stay positioned far away from the bar until she hits the bottom of her swing; at that moment, her downswing ends and her upswing begins, so right as she passes under the bar, she should start closing the shoulders to bring the hips as close to the bar as possible.

The two biggest key points that hold most athletes back are these:
1) She should not initiate the kip too early. She should remain extended all the way until the end of the glide swing, and not try to bring her toes up until she has stalled out at the top of that forward swing.
2) She should relax her grip. Most athletes learning kips tend to have the grip-of-death, which prevents the wrists from getting on top of the bar, and creates the illusion that they're pushing themselves away from the bar on the way up. With a relaxed grip, the athlete will automatically regrip on the way up, allowing her wrists to get on top of the bar.

Without seeing a video, I can't say for sure that those are the things your daughter needs to focus on, but for 99% of kids who get stuck on kips, it's one or both of those things.
 
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TheXcelMom

Proud Parent
Apr 14, 2022
38
I don't have a video, but the underlying physics aren't too complicated, and they're the same for every skill on bars (there is one complicating factor that I'll be leaving out here, but it can be ignored at this stage). Every single bars skill that ever has or ever will be performed can be thought of like this:

If the hips are far away from the bar, that's a high-energy position, and if they're close to the bar, that's a low-energy position. High-energy positions build up a lot of momentum on the way down, but spend a lot of momentum on the way up; obviously, low-energy positions are the reverse of this. Thus, you can increase power by getting the hips farther away from the bar on the way down and closer on the way up, and you can decrease power by getting close to the bar on the way down and far on the way up.

Congratulations: you now know 90% of everything there is to know about bars.

So let's look at how this works in a kip. The first thing you need to understand is that a kip is an optical illusion; it looks like it happens in the front swing, but actually the entire skill happens on the way back.
The athlete should try to be as extended as possible as she reaches the end of her glide swing, so the hips are as far from the bar as possible. The kip itself starts in the exact instant where her glide swing stalls at its peak; at this moment, the athlete should bring her toes towards the bar (while keeping the hips far away) as she starts swinging back down. Ideally the hips stay positioned far away from the bar until she hits the bottom of her swing; at that moment, her downswing ends and her upswing begins, so right as she passes under the bar, she should start closing the shoulders to bring the hips as close to the bar as possible.

The two biggest key points that hold most athletes back are these:
1) She should not initiate the kip too early. She should remain extended all the way until the end of the glide swing, and not try to bring her toes up until she has stalled out at the top of that forward swing.
2) She should relax her grip. Most athletes learning kips tend to have the grip-of-death, which prevents the wrists from getting on top of the bar, and creates the illusion that they're pushing themselves away from the bar on the way up. With a relaxed grip, the athlete will automatically regrip on the way up, allowing her wrists to get on top of the bar.

Without seeing a video, I can't say for sure that those are the things your daughter needs to focus on, but for 99% of kids who get stuck on kips, it's one or both of those things.
This is exactly the answer I was looking for. THANK YOU so much!
 
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