Competitive trampolining is an exciting and unique approach to gymnastics that combines several athletic skills into incredible acrobatic feats. In this sport, athletes are judged by their ability to land these stunts safely without losing their body balance. And these demands require them to be highly healthy, confident, focused, and capable of memorizing challenging routines.
Trampolining is one of the respected and most challenging gymnastic events in the world. However, competitive trampolining was part of the objective since trampoline was invested in 1934 at the University of Iowa. The 10 bounce format was discovered in the early 1950s. This led to the upgrade and changes to the competition mode that eventually resulted in the first Trampoline World Champions in London. This tournament was organized by a man named Ted Blake, who was also a competitor himself. He believed that the sport had long viability as a spectator event. And it later turned out that he was right as Trampolining became even more popular with time.
As of today, trampolining is a registered sport in Olympics. Competitive trampolining turned into an Olympic sporting game in 2000. Since then, many countries have endorsed the sport by hosting events that have particular competitive trampolining activity.
Many competitive trampolinists often develop an interest in the sport since childhood. This is because children are naturally very flexible, slim, and confident in their athletic abilities. Besides, children that participate in the trampoline gymnastic event develop more strength, motor skill, and muscle control. And as they grow older, they become more skilled at trampolining and may eventually choose to make competitive trampolining a lifelong hobby.
Stunts in Competitive Trampolining
Competitive trampolining routines are typically gymnastic-based stunts. However, there are three types of stunts in a trampoline competition. They are as listed below:
- The Straight Stunt
This type of stunt is performed with the legs and neck in a straight position while the arms at down at the sides.
- The Tuck
The tuck position is performed with the arms and legs bent. The knees are then pulled into the chest, and the arms will be wrapped around the legs gently to prevent further movement.
- The Pike
The pike is performed with both the arms and the legs arranged at a 90-degree angle to the body. This move is a bit challenging and demands much more flexibility.
Furthermore, these moves can be combined with other feats, such as somersaults, twists, and rotation. The combination of these moves and motions provides an athlete an endless amount of creativity in creating the routines and can be easily adjusted in case of any pain or difficulty.
Types of Competitive Trampolining
Competitive trampolining is getting better with time hence. Hence, the need to specialize according to the skills you possess. Trampolining has been divided into different events. Each of these events has its uniqueness and telling differences that distinguish them from one another.
In a modern competitive trampoline, there are four different events you can participate in. They are:
- Individual Trampoline
In today’s Olympics, the only regulated trampolining is the individual competitive trampolining. This means that only one person is permitted to bounce on and off the trampoline at a time. Each competitor is requested to make 10 bounces (also known as contacts on the trampoline). They are expected to perform several rotations during bouncing, turns in midair, and twists while holding various positions. The athletes are graded based on their performance. In most cases, they will have to do the routine 2-3 times, and at least each of them will have specific requirements for skills that should be demonstrated.
- Synchronized Trampoline
Synchronized trampolining is very similar to individual trampolining. The difference is that only two competitors are doing the same routine simultaneously on adjacent trampolines. In synchronized trampolining, there are two different sets of judges. One set of judges will score them using the same system as individual trampolining, while the other group of judges will score them as a team based on how synchronized they are. There are penalties in point deductions for not doing the same moves and additional points for having the same speed and height.
- Double Mini-Trampoline
Double Mini-Trampoline is done with a different type of trampoline called the Double Mini-Trampoline or DMT. The DMT has two viable sides, with one sloping end and the other side flat. Competitors run-up to the trampoline’s sloped end, bounce off onto the flat part of the trampoline, and bounce again for the dismount.
- Power Tumbling Trampoline
Although this activity is grouped as a trampolining event, its competitive format is similar to a gymnastics floor routine. Each competitor is expected to do a long series of acrobatics move down a 25-foot long spring track. Judges for this competition award marks based on the degree of difficulty, the movements’ execution, and the routine’s smoothness.
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