Its been a while. (a few weeks) … but this’ll make up for it. The most notable achievement recently has been the milestone of Gainers. For ages i’ve been attempting to chuck them into a foam pit and each time not getting the rotation or commitment and landing on my head/neck and pretty much hurting myself. :/ …. no matter how much advice people gave me I just couldn’t force myself to arc over backwards whilst thinking about traveling forwards.
But I found a solution! (for me and a few others) So here’s my 100% tried and tested best solution for overcoming the fear of throwing a gainer, for people that are shit scared of doing them like I was. Al you need is a foam pit… look up your local gymnastics centre and go visit it:
1: stand on the edge of a foam pit facing sideways.
(no foam pit? too bad! … ok, try a sand pit, swimming pool, hedge, beanbags, pile of babies nappies whatever)
The reason for being sideways is you are going to do a backflip into the pit whilst falling onto your side. This sideways ‘action’ means the fear of hitting your head on the edge of the pit will be removed. Now the problem with falling sideways, is first you need to know/discover which direction to face in order to know which is the better side to fall on! This is trial and error. Find this out first before going any further.
2: start to gently lean into the pit, and as you feel yourself falling throw a backflip.
Assuming you’ve managed that bit you should have successfully landed a ‘wierd feeling’ backflip, onto your side. Do a few more like that to get comfortable with them. Try and ‘fall’ less and less to your side and eventually, just jump sideways in the air. However if the first one felt fine, move on to stage 3…
3: One step sideways flip…
ok, still standing sideways on the pit edge. You’re now going to do the same backflip whilst leaning/jumping sideways, but this time, you need to take one step and throw one leg up first. Do this by throwing your strongest leg up first. Not sure which is your strongest leg? then read this….
If you’re a skateboarder, your strongest leg will be your leading / non-pushing leg. This is the same leg you place in the forward position if you surf, snowboard or wakeboard too. If you don’t do any of those and still haven’t got a clue. Do this. Stand facing someone, get that other person to gently push evenly on both your shoulders until you start falling backwards. Eventually you’ll have to move a leg to steady yourself, the leg you move first is your strongest leg)
ok, back to the pit… and still stage 3!
- Stand with your weakest leg forward (stand up and try it now btw).
- Have your strongest leg behind you at a comfortable distance away from the other leg.
- With your weight on your strongest leg, lean quickly forward and onto your other leg, whilst throwing your strongest leg waaaay up above your head as high as you can and start the backflip motion
- Once your strongest leg has gone up as high as it can launch up the other leg and continue the backflip as normal.
Hopefully that went well and you’ll kind of thing you’ve done a ‘gainer’. Technically you have. But it won’t be a proper one until you’ve travelled forwards in a straight line. Try a few more with this technique.
4: More than one step?
Done 1 step? try a few. Simple as that. Whilst still travelling sideways… see how many steps you can achieve and still flip sideways. I managed a few steps comfortably before moving on to the last stage.
5: Straighten up.
Ok, this is the big one. Now you’re comfortable taking steps and spinning sideways (whilst travelling forwards) Its now time to commit to the trick and throw it in a straight line. There’s no short cut to this… but you will have the skills and confidence to do what you need to do now.
If you’re rotating but not coming round to your feet quick enough, try tightening up in the air, by grabbing your knees on the way round.
My efforts (and a few others) can be seen on my youtube account. Look for vid number 15.