Gymnastic Conditioning Exercises
Gymnastic conditioning exercises are designed to help you strengthen your core, leg and arm muscles in an effort to improve your flexibility and control during a gymnastics routine. Conditioning exercises for gymnasts target the parts of your body you are specifically looking to exercise and tone.
Flexibility training exercises are designed to improve your dexterity during routines as well as prevent you from pulling muscles during a full routine. If you are looking to improve flexibility in your legs, performing exercises such as the pike stretch and front lunge will help you loosen up your hamstrings as well as your quadriceps. If you are looking to increase flexibility in your arms, performing arm-up rotator cuff stretches with a wooden stick or pole several times a day will improve your arm rotation.
In addition to increasing your power and strength during a gymnastics routine, strength-training exercises will help improve your control and coordination during an exercise. Handstands for 30 seconds to a minute at a time will help improve your arm strength as well as your body control during a routine. In addition, pushups and leg extensions will help strengthen your arms and legs, testing the endurance for extended periods of time. While on the parallel bars, place a hand on each bar, bending at the knees and lowering yourself down. Perform three sets of 20 lifts to improve arm and upper body strength.
Endurance exercises will help improve your follow through at the end of long routines. For the uneven bars, jumping between the lower and upper bar repeatedly for two minutes will help strengthen your upper body as well as improve your endurance. On the mat, performing your routine several times without stopping will help boost improve your endurance. Basic endurance training such as running, jogging or biking can also be helpful for gymnastics looking to give their endurance a boost.
Core-training exercises are designed to help strengthen your core muscles, ranging from your abdominal muscles to your lower-back muscles. Situps and crunches are basic exercises that will help strengthen these muscles. Performing four sets of 30 repetitions several times a week will keep your muscles stable and strong. In addition to basic exercises, performing leg lifts while balancing either on the uneven bars or the parallel bars will help strengthen your core muscles and legs. Lift your legs up until they are parallel with the ground, slowly lowering them back down and repeating until fatigued.
Jason Aberdeene has been a freelance writer since 2008. His articles have appeared in the "UCSD Guardian" and on various websites, specializing in teen health. An assistant at Kagan Physical Therapy since 2009, Aberdeene has a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from the University of California, San Diego.