Each level of gymnastics includes a specified set of skills that must be mastered before moving on to the next level. Skills vary by event and increase in difficulty as levels increase. Many skills associated with the balance beam have been adapted from floor routines. Skills in level 6 include new skills and skills from level 5 with higher degrees of difficulty.
Mounts and Dismounts
The mount and dismount associated with level 6 are the scissors leg swing mount and a cross-handstand with a quarter turn to a side handstand and another quarter turn to dismount. These moves require a lot of upper body and core strength as the arms and abdominals are used to push the body onto and off the beam. The scissor leg swing mount begins from the side of the beam with the body facing the length of the beam. Hands are placed one in front of the other with fingertips pointed toward the end of the beam as legs are scissor kicked so that the gymnast straddles the beam. To dismount, the gymnast kicks up into a handstand that begins with hands one in front of the other. From the cross-armed handstand the gymnast moves a hand a quarter turn so that her hands are side by side. One hand is then picked up as the other turns another quarter turn and the gymnast lands on the side of the beam.
Jumps and Tumbling
In addition to the mount, the jumps and tumbling required for level 6 beam routines include a 120-degree split leap, a tuck jump to a split jump and back walkover or back roll to a ¾ handstand For the split leap, the gymnast jumps, turning as the legs are split in the air, and lands facing the opposite direction with one foot in front of the other. For the tuck jump to split leap, the gymnast jumps straight up, tucking legs under and shoots legs out into a split at the height of the jump. The gymnast lands facing the same direction with one foot in front of the other. For a back walkover, the gymnast arches her back, lowering her hands to the beam behind, and kicks her legs over so that she ends in an upright position.
Turns and Ballet Skills
Turns and ballet skills include a coupe side developpe ronde de jambe, half turn using the heel snap technique, weight transfer, left and right pivot turns, arabesque to scale and a half pivot lunge turn. In the coupe side developpe ronde de jambe the gymnast lifts a pointed toe alongside the opposite leg and slowly extends the leg to the side, quickly tapping the toe to the knee when the leg has been fully extended. Left and right pivot turns have feet placed one in front of the other while the gymnast pivots 180 degrees on the balls of her feet. The half pivot lunge turn is the same except one leg is extended behind the gymnast. In the arabesque to scale the gymnast lifts a slightly bent leg behind her and slowly lowers her upper body to the beam and straightens the leg.
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