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Hi, I'm 14 years old and I'm under a lot of pressure to get a standing back-handspring and a round-off back-handspring in LESS than a month before our first competition! I go to a great gymnastics facility but the only problem is that my elbows always seem to crack or dislocate whenever I do them. I was just wondering if there was any specific thing that I may be doing wrong in order to make my elbows get hurt, and if there were any exercises you would recommend to make my elbows stronger! Please write back before the 19th! Thanks.

Handsprings take time... LOTS and lots of time. The more hours each WEEK that you apply to learn the skill, the more quickly you'll achieve it safely. Most likely your elbow trouble is associated with your growth pattern... which is to say, you'll probably grow out of it. In the mean-time, I recommend that you begin building more strength in the muscles of your upper arms. That means... do LOTS of handstand push-ups. like 12 at a time
three times a day. Also, chin-ups.

You should have a doctor, nurse or physical therapist check out that elbow to be safe and recommend some specific strengthening exercises for you.

My 'Better Back-Handsprings' video also has many exercises to help you achieve your handspring more quickly. Grab a parent and surf over to my web site together to learn more about it and share your dreams. www.CoachWayne.com

have fun, be safe, push hard

Coach Wayne was the Head Coach for the Savannah College of Art and Design Cheerleading team and Executive Coach of Olympic Gymnast Zuzana Sekerova. His articles, videos, and books have been used by students and instructors worldwide since 1991. Coach Wayne is available for tumbling instructor certification training. For booking information, coaches/owners should text or call 912.238.1747.



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