Shoot throughs

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Sep 21, 2008
I am a gymnastics coach in Canada, and this year our routines changed for the beginner Level (compareable to Level 3 /4 from the USA). The shoot through has been incorperated in the bar routine, and I am having a really hard time getting my girls get over the fear of this skill.

I have never had to teach a move like this before, so I have no idea what types of drills to do, or what to look for when its done correctly. Are they supposed to cast high to put their leg through? One of my girls does this, and even though she gets her leg though, she tends to fall forward after the skill because of all the momentum she has.

The more common problem in my class though is the girls casting, but pushing their bodies away from the bar instead of being overtop like they should be. They dont do this if I ask them to do a normal cast, but as soon as I say shoot through, they change their cast on me.I believe they are doing this becasue they are afraid of the skill, but I'm not sure how to fix this problem.

Finally in the cut back (swinging their leg back around the bar so they are no longer splitting the bar, but in front support) does anyone know any tricks to help the girls get their leg over? Lots of my girls hit their leg on the way over.

Thanks in advance to anyone who takes the time to reply!
i'll try to do this tomorrow. i'm tired and in need of some sleep. once i get started i may fall asleep mid-typing.:)
For the cut back I have the girls transfer their weight to their opposit arm and one quick motion, swing the leg over the bar. Make sure their chest stays over or just over the bar. My girls will usually hit their ankle a few time before they finally understand that they need to lift their leg a smidge higher. But as I see it, bumps and bruises is just a sign of the gymnast sucessfully trying to concur the hard skills.
I would like to learn the shoot-through myself, I've never tried it and so far have been too scared to, so I will be interested in reading the replies! What I am wondering is, how do you get your foot over the bar? Does it have to go through straight, or can you turn it sideways?

For the cut back, I've found that it is easier when done quickly, the slower I do it the harder it is and the more likely I get my leg stuck. Also, I've found it to be a very 'mental' thing - as I do it I imagine my hip joint being very 'loose', rather than focussing on the movement itself.
I am a level 4. As far as being afraid, there really isn't a whole lot that can go wrong. Just let them know you're there to catch them. The higher you cast, the easier the shoot through is. Make sure she pulls her knee straight to her chest and not let her knee turn sideways because that will get in the way and make her foot get caught. On the cut back, push up high and cut back fast but not too fast that you lose control. Hope this helps!
Shoot through - have them start in a push up position with their hands on a panel mat and then shoot their leg through to a split. Also practice pike drag ups on a block or pommel horse or bar (start in front support and drag/press up trying to get to pike stand - most won't be able to get to pike stand).

Then they can do jump throughs on a low bar about thigh height and from a stand.

Then on the bar - cast, cast shoot through. They have to cast into the shoot but not very high. Going around forward in this grip could be dangerous (hard to grasp the bar) so it is important to spot by holding the thigh of the free leg and the upper arm on the same side (example, right shoot through: support the child by holding their leg leg and left arm to both push them up and give them more time to do the shoot, and prevent them from falling forwards).

Leg cuts - you can do them on a pommel horse and also a beam to practice, these can be a little easier. They should be pushing up high so they finish on their thighs, not their belly.
Thanks everyone for the input! I'll try out these drills on monday with them, and let you know how it goes!

If anyone else has any other ideas It would be greatly appreciated!
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