Gymnasts rely on whole-body strength to perform the most challenging moves. It’s particularly important for them to develop strong wrists that are capable of supporting their body weight and holding on to equipment. The Gymnastics Training Center of Rochester, based in Penfield, NY, is staffed by the best in the industry, and they have some valuable advice for anyone seeking to improve their wrist strength.
Recognize first, the proper health of the wrists are critical to gymnastics and tumbling. Since the movements are quick, the wrists are often on the receiving end of blunt force. As such, it’s important to be careful while you’re performing the following exercises, whether you’re an experienced gymnast or are just starting. Some strength exercises can help but need to be carefully monitored and begin with low weight:
- Wrist Curl: Also known as the wrist flexion, this exercise requires gripping a dumbbell (use very small weighs to begin) or a resistance band. Rest the forearm on a table, and leave the wrist hanging off the end, with the dumbbell gripped and the palm facing upward. Pull the wrist upward while leaving the arm flat on the table. Lower the wrist gently. Repeat this move on both sides for a total of 15 to 20 completions.
- Wrist Extension: Similar to the wrist curl movement, this exercise also requires a lightweight dumbbell. Rest an arm on a table, and allow the wrist to hang off the end with the palm facing downward. Lower and raise the hand to work the forearm muscles, and repeat the exercise for a total of 15 to 20 completions.
- Finger Pushups: This activity requires some serious strength and should only be performed by skilled gymnasts. It begins with a regular pushup, with the fingers extended in a forward direction. After completing a normal pushup by lowering to the ground, push back up using only the tips of the fingers while maintaining straight elbows. Lower back to complete a full pushup, and repeat 10 to 15 times.
Proper conditioning is essential for both novice and experienced gymnasts. At The Gymnastics Training Center of Rochester, safety is the cornerstone of all activities, and the team focuses on producing a fun and engaging experience for all students. If you’re interested in learning more about the gymnastics program or want to improve your strength, visit the center’s website. You can also call (585) 388-8686 to speak with a representative.