This week we look at the Front Handspring. This is a great front tumbling skill that can act as an entry into other tumbling lines. Front Handspring are often over looked as a tumbling skill in cheerleading. Give these four drills a try!
Drill #1 – Front Handspring to flat back
Put a block in front of a big squishy mat. Then do a hurdle or run towards the block and kick up to a handstand with your hands on the block. You should snap your feet together with emphasis on speeding up your second leg to catch up to the first one. As this happens you should try and pop your hands off the block so you can get a little air time before landing flat on your back.
Drill #2 – Front Handspring to sitting (then to feet)
This is basically the same drill as the one to flat back. However, instead of landing flat on your back you should pop off the block and swing your arms in front of you so you land on the mat in a seat drop position (legs straight out in front of them with their hands pushing on the floor beside their hips).
Drill# 3 – Handstand pop
Start in a lunge position with your arms straight above your head. Kick up to a 45-degree handstand and as your hands touch the floor extend your shoulders and try and “pop” your hands off of the floor without bending your elbows. At the beginning it’s ok to not land in a handstand after you “pop”. But as you get better the goal is to try and hold your final handstand and show control. It is important that when you are kicking to your first 45-degree handstand that you reach a little bit further in front of you than you normally would for a regular kick to handstand.
Drill #4 – Front handspring over the block
Put a block in front of a smaller mat and hurdle or run towards the block, kick up to your handstand, snap your feet together and push off the block. You should try and land with your arms above your head with open hips and open shoulders. If you notice you are bringing one arm off the block before the other, go back to the other drills until the problem is fixed. Once you can land from a bigger block make the block lower until you can do it on the floor.
A side note for all these drill is when kicking to handstand, try and put your hands further forward so it creates more of an angle in your shoulders. This will create a blocking motion and will assist in getting your hands off of the block or floor.
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