Drills=Skills Show 03 – Tucks

Episode 3 of Drill=Skills features Shea, David, and Sean focusing on Tucks.

Drills=Skills Show 02 – Standing Fulls

On Drills=Skills Show 2 David, Sean, and Shea discuss Standing Fulls.

The show opens with discussing the prerequisites required for a standing full. Then Sean Guzman addresses proper techniques for the standing full. David Petty gives some drills for proper arms and legs and Shea Crawford looks at some troubleshooting methods.

Shea on Back Handsprings

Shea Crawford is the Tumbling Director at Midwest Cheer Elite, which has several locations, originating in Ohio.

The back handspring is such an important skill in cheerleading.  It’s used in standing and running tumbling.  There are multiple variations and connections prior to or following the back handspring throughout levels.  This being said the development of a solid back handspring is crucial.

As a prerequisite I like to see a solid back walkover.  This isn’t always a requirement but especially when dealing with younger athletes the back walkover is a progression for athletes going backwards and inverting to placing body weight on their hands.  This also shows upper back flexibility as well as core strength.  Often times males who start cheerleading late may struggle with the backwalkover so although it’s not a necessary prerequisite to learn a back handspring I still encourage those athletes to work on those skills to help strengthen their back handspring over time.

Sean and David covered many important pieces as well as drills that I use daily! I like to break the back handspring into pieces.  Sit, swing, jump is repeated constantly. Athletic stance is the starting position followed by arms leading the way for the legs to JUMP into handstand shape.  Once in the solid handstand position a solid block will lead athletes to their feet.

Leading with arms before the jump is so important.  Something I hear Debbie Love say often in regards to this is to think about diving into the water, you lead with your hands to protect your head.  This really helps kids understand the importance of a proper arm swing.

Drills=Skills Show 01 – 2017-18 Tumbling Rules

On the first Drills=Skills show, Sean Guzman, David Petty, Shea Crawford & special guest Debbie Love discuss the changes to the tumbling rules which will start in August, 2017.

Highlights:

  • Level 1 – Changes to round off connections
  • Level 2 – No turning after back handsprings
  • Level 3 – Now requires a clear pause or step after punch fronts/aerial skills. The safety is discussed along with how it can help the industry moving forward.
  • The addition of front twisting in restricted 5 now opens the door for more skills and for front and back tumbling to align.

The show closes with discussions of Tiny ages 5-6 and Tiny Exhibition 3-5. Debbie goes into detail about how alternative curriculum directed at younger athletes can positively impact a gym’s bottom line! Tune in next week to hear the show discuss Standing Fulls! Resources:

Shea on Standing Fulls

Shea Crawford is the Tumbling Director at Midwest Cheer Elite, which has several locations, originating in Ohio.

Prerequisites

Prior to starting to introduce a standing full to an athlete I require the athlete to have an open or no grab standing tuck.  This demonstrates the athlete possesses the height and strength to begin working on a standing full.  The athlete must also (usually) have at least a solid round off back handspring full and/or a two-three back handsprings to full.

Introducing Standing Fulls

I like to work standing one back handspring to full at the same time as standing full.  This helps the feeling of the skill.  Arm placement for standing fulls is crucial so I like to have athletes work on proper arms with jump full turns and jump full turn to tuck position onto a crash mat.

Gaining Confidence

Attempting the standing full on different surfaces such as a trampoline or elevated mats onto a crash mat is a great way to help the athlete gain confidence in any skill including standing full.

Troubleshooting

One of the biggest mistakes I see in standing fulls is underestimating the strength required.  Often times athletes posses the technique required but lack the strength required.  Next would be the dragging of feet behind the skill.  Pushing all the way through toes with strong arms is crucial to having a solid standing full.