MAG L5 Grips for Rings and HB

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Men's Artistic Gymnastics
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Proud Parent
Jun 6, 2008
So when is the right time to get grips? I mean real dowel grips? DS is beginning L5

Everyone says HB grips are needed once giants start. So I can wait then? Will new grips mess up the kip?
What about rings? Is there any skill where grips are needed?

I am asking cuz I either get em now, or I wait till next year...Is there an advantage in getting used to them early?

Yes, I know, I will ask coach too but I just wanted others' opinion.

Geoffrey Taucer

Staff member
Gold Membership
Jan 21, 2007
Baltimore, MD
I reccomend that my boys get highbar grips for level 5 and ring grips for level 6.

While high bar grips aren't really necessary until the kid is learning giants, they're nice to have at level 5 simply because the dowel makes that kip MUCH easier. It also, once the kid gets used to them, allows much higher swings without losing grip. It's also good to already be used to using grips by the time you start learning giants.

As for rings, it's a lot less cut-and-dry, and different coaches handle this differently. I think they're great to have once you're swinging high enough for smooth inlocates and dislocates, simply because they make you less likely to peel, which in turn allows kids to comfortably swing higher (once they're used to the grips.) However, I don't reccomend them for level 5, simply because they make the muscle-up at the beginning fo the routine significantly harder.



Getting the grip soft enough for the muscle-up is a real big pain. It's only worth it if they are swinging huge which then makes me think why are they in L5?

For the small L5's, grips don't make any sense. They won't likely peel because of how swing they have, because it's still small relative to their size.


I go with the wait till after they have their kip to get grips. However, one of my boys had huge swings as a L5 with good technique. I didn't want him to peel. He never liked his grips and would always forget to bring them or wear them, etc. He was also an older L5.

I probably won't reccomend my training L5's to get grips this year. Our HB also is the strap bar which means it's chalk naked. Occasionally, they will lose their grip while swinging and I think it's because of this ( something to be settled by getting a swappable single rail over pit in the next budget ). I'm told it would actually help their ability to stay on by using grips ( because it's so damn polished ) but I'm not gonna push it at this point.

I wonder with the bigger training 5 if it will impede his ability to learn to swing big and whether it's a matter of small tap right now or strength ( he has good strength ). If I do think it becomes a limiter, I'll have him get grips sometimes after our off-season ( august ).


Interesting discussion here. Now y'all got me wondering how my boy wound up with bar and ring grips this past season (his first) as an L4. :confused:

I think the coach suggested grips to the older/bigger L4's, but I don't recall why, exactly. All I know is that my guy struggled through the break-in period, but by competition time he was totally used to them, and he looked pretty good on both types of apparatus. He swings big for his age/level, so maybe the grips were appropriate?

Now he's being groomed for level 6 (still no official word) and just a few days ago he did several sets of 4 consecutive giants on the strap bar (coaches wanted to see what he could do). I'm sorta glad he's already gotten the hang of using grips.

- Harv
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