For those of us who weren’t lucky enough to have been involved with gymnastics before we found CrossFit, things like Handstand Push-ups, Muscle Ups, & Toes to Bar typically don’t come very easy. We often see these movements done at a rapid pace in the midst of a tough workout, but we fail to recognize the time that has been put into the progression of developing those movements. The biggest mistake one can make is rushing into these advanced skills without developing an adequate foundation of strength and body awareness.
Strict before Kipping. While it can be tempting to jump up to the rings, start swinging, and attempt to throw yourself over the top, this is only a disaster waiting to happen. Take the time to develop proper pulling and pressing strength before you start kipping any of your movements. Focus on your strict pull-ups, strict dips, and strict HSPUs – it will pay off in the long run.
Static Strength. Static holds are some of the most underrated exercises for developing bodyweight strength and overall body awareness. Start with basic hollow body and superman holds and then move on to more advanced exercises like L-sits, support holds on the rings, and chest-to-bar holds.
Progressions. Don’t skip steps! Follow progressions for developing your kip swing and gymnastics skills. Body positions and shapes are crucial to efficient gymnastics. Find basic progressions online and don’t be afraid to ask your coaches for help!
Developing gymnastics skills can be challenging, but hard work does pay off. Invest the time and reap the benefits!