Tumbling (gymnastics)

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In gymnastics, tumbling, also known as power tumbling is an acrobatic sporting discipline which combines some of the skills of artistic gymnastics on the floor with those of trampolining. It is practised on a 25-metre long spring track. It was developed from tumbling performances performed by entertainers from very early times but as a sport is now codified, regulated, judged and performed using standardised special acrobatic equipment.

This sport is practised by both men and women. Competitors perform two passes, each containing 8 skills along the track, usually starting with a Round-off, Barani, or Rudi (the Barani and Rudi are forward, twisting somersaults) followed by a series of back-handsprings and/or whips (a fast, long back somersault done in a straight body position) ending in a 'dismount' skill. Only the feet and hands are allowed to make contact with the track.

Governed by rules established by the Fédération Internationale de Gymnastique (FIG), tumbling is one of the gymnastic disciplines. Many elements of tumbling are also practised on Floor Exercise by participants of both Women's Artistic Gymnastics (WAG) and Men's Artistic Gymnastics (MAG). Tumbling elements such as the round-off and back-handspring (flic) are commonly integrated into the balance beam routines of gymnasts.

Tumbling has only been an Olympic gymnastics event once, at the 1932 Summer Olympics, and was a demonstration event in 1996 and 2000. It is one of the events of the World Games. There is an annual World Championships held in conjunction with the Trampoline World Championships.

Equipment[edit]

When power tumbling was first started, and for the first ever US National Championships in Tumbling in 1886, gymnasts would perform their skills on thin mats only. From there, "floors" evolved in a wide variety of ways, including rows of skis tied together with the ends cut off under those mats, and then to the rod floor used today,[1] developed by Randy Mulkey, which is a 25 metres (82 ft) long by 2-metre (6.6 ft) wide track consisting of fibreglass rods (laid horizontally, to make it springy) under two layers of foam mats.[2][3] It also includes a 10 metres (33 ft) run up at the front and at the end is a mat where the gymnast lands their dismounting skill.

Competition[edit]

Competitors perform two passes, each containing eight skills along the track, usually starting with a round-off, barani, or rudi (the barani and rudi are forward, twisting somersaults) followed by a series of back-handsprings and/or whips (a fast, long back somersault done in a straight body position) ending in a 'dismount' skill. In the lower levels, there are rules about what each pass should contain. At more advanced levels there is a choice about the skills performed. This includes adding much more difficulty to the passes by adding twisting somersaults (called single, double or triple fulls) in the middle of the pass. The dismounting skill is often another double or triple full or a double or triple back somersault, which can also include extra twists. Internationally, competitors frequently have 3 double somersaults incorporated in to each pass. All athletes in this sport at high levels are expected to have a finals pass as well as their other two passes. While not used at every meet, it is important to have three passes.

Scoring is similar to trampolining with five judged scores for execution (form, body position and final landing) and one for the degree of difficulty (number of somersaults and twists etc.). The top and bottom execution scores are dropped and the remaining three added to the Difficulty score to give the total for the pass.

Basic tumbling moves[edit]

Tumbling results[edit]

World Champions – Men[edit]

FIG era
Year Gymnast Country
2013 Kristof Willerton  United Kingdom
2011 Yang Song  China
2010 Viktor Kyforenko  Ukraine
2009 Tagir Murtazaev  Russia
2007 Andrey Krylov  Russia
2005 Wang Jiexu  China
2003 Alexsei Kryzhanovskly  Russia
2001 Denis Serdiyukov  Russia
1999 Levon Petrosian  Russia
FIT era
Year Gymnast Country
1998 Levon Petrosian  Russia
1996 Rayshine Harris  United States
1994 Adrien Slenkelwicz  Poland
1992 Jon Beck  United States
1990 Pascal Eouzan  France
1988 Pascal Eouzan  France
1986 Jerry Hardy  United States
1984 Steve Elliott  United States
1982 Steve Elliott  United States
1980 Ken Ekberg  United States
1978 Jim Bertz  United States
1976 Jim Bertz  United States

World Champions – Women[edit]

FIG era
Year Gymnast Country
2013 Jia Fangfang  China
2011 Jia Fangfang  China
2010 Anna Korobeynikova  Russia
2009 Anna Korobeynikova  Russia
2007 Anna Korobeynikova  Russia
2005 Anna Korobeynikova  Russia
2003 Elena Chabenenko  Ukraine
2001 Elena Chabenenko  Ukraine
1999 Elena Bluyina  Russia
FIT era
Year Gymnast Country
1998 Elena Bluyina  Russia
1996 Chrystel Robert  France
1994 Chrystel Robert  France
1992 Chrystel Robert  France
1990 Chrystel Robert  France
1988 Megan Cunningham  United States
1986 Jill Hollembeak  United States
1984 Jill Hollembeak  United States
1982 Jill Hollembeak  United States
1980 Tracy Conour  United States
1978 Nancy Quattrochi  United States
1976 Tracy Long  United States

World Games[edit]

Men[edit]

Games Gold Silver Bronze
1981 Santa Clara  United States
Steve Elliott
 United States
Randy Wickstrom
 United States
Steve Cooper
1985 London  United States
Steve Elliott
 United States
Chad Fox
 France
Didier Sammola
1989 Karlsruhe  United States
Jon Beck
 France
Pascal Eouzan
 France
Christophe Lambert
1993 Den Haag  United States
Jon Beck
 United States
Rayshine Harris
 Russia
Aleksey Kryzhanovskiy
1997 Lahti  Russia
Vladimir Ignatenkov
 United States
Rayshine Harris
 South Africa
Tseko Mogotsi
2001 Akita  Russia
Levon Petrosian
 South Africa
Tseko Mogotsi
 United Kingdom
Robert Small
2005 Duisburg  Poland
Jozef Wadecki
 Belarus
Andrey Kabishev
 Russia
Aleksandr Skorodumov
2009 Kaohsiung  Russia
Andrey Krylov
 United Kingdom
Michael Barnes
 Ukraine
Viktor Kyforenko
2013 Cali  China
Zhang Luo
 Ukraine
Viktor Kyforenko
None awarded  United Kingdom
Kristof Willerton

Women[edit]

Games Gold Silver Bronze
1981 Santa Clara  United States
Angie Whiting
 United States
Kristi Laman
 United States
Stacey Hansen
1985 London  France
Isabelle Jagueux
 United States
Megan Cunningham
 Canada
Maria Constantinitis
1989 Karlsruhe  France
Chrystel Robert
 United States
Michelle Mara
 United States
Melanie Bugg
1993 Den Haag  France
Chrystel Robert
 Belarus
Tatyana Morosova
 United States
Michelle Mara
1997 Lahti  Ukraine
Olena Chabanenko
 France
Chrystel Robert
 Russia
Natalya Borisenko
2001 Akita  Russia
Yelena Bluyina
 United Kingdom
Kathryn Peberdy
 Belarus
Anna Terenya
2005 Duisburg  Ukraine
Olena Chabanenko
 Russia
Anna Korobeynikova
 United States
Yuliya Hall
2009 Kaohsiung  Russia
Anna Korobeynikova
 Russia
Anzhelika Soldatkina
 Canada
Emily Smith
2013 Cali  China
Jia Fangfang
 United Kingdom
Rachael Letsche
 Canada
Emily Smith

Other notable tumblers[edit]

Person Country
Edwin Gross  United States
William Herrmann  United States
Rowland Wolfe  United States
Judy Wills Cline  United States
Jordan Ramos  United Kingdom
Michael Chaves  Canada

External links[edit]

Videos of power tumbling[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bertz, Jim. "Through The Years: How the Competitive Tumbling Floor Evolved". Retrieved 20 May 2011. 
  2. ^ Ross, Athletic Supply. "Competition Equipment". Archived from the original on 13 October 2007. Retrieved 20 October 2007. 
  3. ^ FIG (2009). "Part II". Apparatus Norms. pp. 83–84.