THe longer I train the more I realize about the importance of muscular memory in achieving a skill and how doing building patterns of muscles firing it gets easier to do it again. I am currently doing ltos of techniques that reinforce this. I am starting Front Tucks on the floor (into the pit first) without the aid of the springboard. As a result I was able to do the technique well very quickly and I know as I keep working with coach I will have it as well.
This is especially apparent to me on the beam where some of the new techniques were so wobbly and yet after constant drilling they became smoother and smooth even on the same day as learning them. Training is about putting in the hours. Drilling and drilling and drilling until the skill becomes ‘natural’.
When I train down at L.A. Fitness now I warm my back and shoulders up for about ten minutes and then I do a couple of slinkies and push hard against the body and squeeze to really open it up and then I am good. I can then do Back Walkovers, Slinkies, Front limber Kickovers and Standups pretty much at will. I can also do combinations of them.
I have recently being doing my back bends on to the minibeam. As I do this I am getting better and better and my hands are getting closer and closer to my feet. I was at the point this morning where my hands are getting very close to the edge of the beam which is fantastic news. I also squeeze very tight in full extension and can feel the stretch from the lower abs right up through the chest and into the shoulders. It is amazing to see this on film as my abs keep opening the arch gets tighter.
Coach is currently spotting me on beam on Beam Back Walkovers. I need to keep drilling the smoothness and balance of going straight back while standing on the beam. I will get there and that is so exciting. This is the one technique that washes out so many gymnasts because it is so scary. Not for me I LOVE it.
My next key drills for this is to do more back walkovers with front leg raised to increase balance. Do 20-25 standard back walkovers in a row in rapid succession to increase speed in the technique and then to do a back walkover on the floor with hands in beam position. These three drills will accelerate me doing Back Walkovers on the beam. Looking forward to it.
So look at what you want to obtain, break it into small steps, keep track of all your progress and keep persevering and watch your dreams come true. Go Heroes!!