Moonsault

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Shawn Michaels performing a moonsault on Chris Jericho at WrestleMania XIX.

A moonsault, moonsault press, or back flip splash is a professional wrestling aerial technique. It was innovated by Mando Guerrero.[1] Much of its popularity in both Japanese and American wrestling is attributed to The Great Muta, despite it being used in North America by "Leaping" Lanny Poffo years before Muta came from Japan.[2] In a standard moonsault, which is generally attempted from the top rope, a wrestler faces away from the supine opponent and executes a backflip landing on the opponent in a splash/press position but facing towards the elevated position. Though this move is generally attempted from the top rope to an opponent lying face up in the mat, myriad variations exist, including moonsaults that see the wrestler land on a standing opponent and forcing them down to the mat. The move is considered a higher-impact version of a splash, since the wrestler utilizes rotational speed.

A less common variation sees the wrestler perform a moonsault on a standing opponent, with the torso of the wrestler striking the torso of the opponent (albeit upside down), forcing the opponent backwards and to the ground with the opponent on top of them, usually placing the opponent in a pinning predicament. Most of the variations listed below can also be performed on standing opponents.

Variations[edit]

Corkscrew moonsault[edit]

The Corkscrew Moonsault, also known as the Skytwister Press, is a twisting moonsault in which the wrestler stands on an elevated platform, such as the top rope,or the corner of the ring, and performs a moonsault with a 360° twist or multiple twists, landing as if performing a normal moonsault.

Double jump moonsault[edit]

This is a variation of a springboard moonsault. This variation sees the wrestler bounces off the middle-rope to elevate himself/herself to the top-rope from where he/she bounces off to perform the moonsault. This version of a moonsault is often referred to as a picture perfect moonsault or double springboard moonsault. This move is used by former TNA superstar Christopher Daniels calling it the BME - Best Moonsault Ever [3][4][5]

Double rotation moonsault[edit]

This is a double rotation moonsault where another rotation is performed after the initial moonsault. There are two major variants of the double moonsault, an Asai moonsault version and a normal moonsault from the top turnbuckle to the inside of the ring with two rotations. The first rotation is an arc of the back

The first variation, also known as the 720° Moonsault, sees a wrestler who is standing on the apron, with a wrestler on the floor behind them, jump up on to either the first or second rope and perform and backflip as in to perform an Asai moonsault but while in mid air tucks their legs reducing resistance and performs a second complete backflip after the first one, landing on a standing opponent below. This is the more common of the two variants due to the increased airtime of the springboard and height from the springboard to the floor. This variant is closely associated with Jack Evans who popularised it as the Stuntin' 101. Evans is also known to perform a corkscrew version of this variant.

The second variation, also known as a 540° Moonsault, sees a wrestler ascend to the top rope and perform a backflip while tucking their legs. This allows the wrestler to have lesser resistance and continues to rotate after the initial first 360° for another 180° completing the second rotation onto an opponent lying on the mat.

Triple jump moonsault[edit]

This is a variation of the double jump moonsault where, from a running start, the attacking wrestler jumps to a chair or other elevated platform, onto the top rope and then does a moonsault from there onto his opponent.[citation needed]

Moonsault slam[edit]

Scotty Vortekz performing a Spanish Fly in Dysfunction.

Any move where the wrestler stands on an elevated position, grabs hold of the opponent, and performs a moonsault while still holding on to the opponent, driving them down to the mat. This move is also known as a Solo Spanish fly. Multiple variations exist, such as a belly-to-belly version and a side slam version, which can also be performed while standing.[citation needed]

Rounding moonsault[edit]

This variation is also referred to as a sideways moonsault, rolling moonsault, rounding splash, and Original Style Moonsault. The attacker climbs the top rope, or other elevated position facing away from the opponent, instead of doing a backflip as in a normal moonsault, the attacker rotates his or her body off to one side horizontally and lands on the opponent chest first, facing the turnbuckle as in a normal moonsault.[citation needed]

Split-legged moonsault[edit]

SeXXXy Eddy performing a split-legged moonsault

This moonsault variation sees the performer jump up and split their legs onto both the left and right top ropes surrounding the top turnbuckle, using the impact of their thighs on the rope to flip themselves over, executing a moonsault onto a prone opponent.[citation needed]

A variation of the split-legged moonsault is the Arabian Press, which involves the performer's thighs both landing on a single top rope, and the performer then continues to use the impact of their thighs on the rope to flip themselves over, executing a moonsault onto a prone opponent.

Springboard moonsault[edit]

This is a move in which a wrestler springboards (bounces off ropes), then executes a backflip and lands on an opponent. This move is known as La Quebrada in lucha libre, sometimes shortened to simply Quebrada. A variation performed off the second rope, popularized by Chris Jericho, is known as the Lionsault.

When a springboard moonsault is performed onto an opponent on the floor outside the ring, rather than one in the ring, it is called an Asai Moonsault. This move is named after its creator Yoshihiro Asai, better known by his gimmick name Último Dragón. This can also be used as a setup for an inverted DDT.

Standing moonsault[edit]

This is a wrestling move in which the wrestler does a backflip on the mat landing on the opponent. This move can be set up by preceding with a roundoff.[citation needed]

See also[edit]

References[edit]