Head placement in Back Walkover and Handstand?

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GymSurvivor

Coach
Gymnast
Hi!
I just have a quick question about head placement.
Back Walkover:
As soon as I bend backwards my head goes back and I look for the floor, should you head really be so your arms cover your ears and your head is neutral the whole way?

Also for a handstand...well in general, should you be looking at the wall behind you or at the floor/beam under you?
 
I teach a back walkover as:
1. Reach up
2. Reach back
3. Look for where you are going
Depending on the shoulder flexibility, the head may be out quite a bit but it should start from the top down. i.e. lead with the hands
For the handstand, if you can see your wrists but not your fingers it should be ok. I've seen some beautiful handstand with the head in but the gymnast had a perfect line from her hands to her feet in the handstand. I guess that's a long way of saying try not to stick you head out too far :).
 
simply, your eyes should see your hands.

My daughter's coach is constantly pushing her head "down" when doing the L4 beam dismount. Is the beam dismount to be treated differently because all of our girls are trained to keep their head in a neutral position rather than looking at the beam?
 
they should 'see' the apparatus thru their eyebrows at all times. it's a technique.:) watch video of proficient gymnasts in slow motion and you'll see what i mean.
 
My daughter's coach is constantly pushing her head "down" when doing the L4 beam dismount. Is the beam dismount to be treated differently because all of our girls are trained to keep their head in a neutral position rather than looking at the beam?

I think the problem with sticking your head out (apart from spoiling the line) is that it can encourage the back to arch, or the body to not reach vertical. I don't think it is just a beam thing. You still need to look at the beam/floor but learn to move your eyes rather than your head. It is quite tricky.
 
My 2 cents, just to agree with others really!

Backward Walkover
1) Stand tall
2) Pull shoulders back
3) Arch and look where you are going

Once in the handstand phase, try to keep your ears covered, but still look at the floor/beam in between your hands

Handstand - Same as above, try to keep your ears covered with arms.

To help you get the idea, Hang on a bar, keeping your ears covered, then glance up at the bar without tipping your head backwards - like dunno said, look through your eyebrows. It does help if you have good shoulder flexibility.
 
Thanks for all the help, I'll have to try that on a bar thanks marie83!

I was just wondering because when I do back walkovers on beam I stand tall, and then arch and spot the beam for where my hands to go, then put them on.

I have a friend who puts her hands in place above her head before she goes and then just bends backwards, her head stays looking at her toe and doesn't look at the beam until after her hands are on it. This personally would scare me, like your hands better be in the right spot haha.
 
Whether you are doing a handstand, or a back walkover, or any other skill for that matter the head is "usually" always neutral. What is neutral? I consider neutral to be (with arms overhead and fully extended up and back), the head can be tilted upward as long as the ears are covered by the arms. This allows the athlete to see the floor and does not cause the back to arch.
 

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