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Question
I have been trying to get my back tucks consistent on the beam for a year now.  I can do them with a lot of height but my problem is that I can't  land them.  I put one foot slightly in front of the other at the take off but when I try to land them on the beam both of my feet come down together side by side.  This of course prevents me from landing them successfully.  I do the same thing when I practice my back tucks up to a panel matt.  How can I land them one foot in front of the other?

Answer
Hello Jill,
         I am very glad to help you.  You need to practice a plain jump with the feet side by side meaning one foot in the middle of the other.  Now you need to land with one foot behind the other with your hips above and between both feet.  Practicing the jump with no trick is the key.  Realize and learn from the drill to see which way you are naturally jumping.  Usually, the gymnast would jump to the side opposite the foot in front on the take off.   For example, if your left foot is slightly in front of your right in take off…….you probably are jumping/falling off to the right side of the beam.  Please be conscience of that and  press off of both feet simultaneously and you will find yourself more square in the flip and be on the beam.  Remember, most all of the jumps on the beam take off and land the same……it is just the position in the air that changes.  I wish you the very best and
take care – Jack Leonard

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Jack Leonard

Expertise

Former 5 time Natl. Tumbling Champ, 3 time Natl. Vaulting Champ, Natl. Floor Exercise Champ; Ass`t coach of Dominique Dawes for 6 years; Owner/Director/Head coach of Kauai Gymnastics Academy on the island of Kauai in Hawaii; Retired Physical Ed teacher; Childrens Fitness Expert; Expert Consultant for gymnastics litigation; Retired Mens & Womens HS Gymnastics coach for 32 years. National coaching honors for Men in 1981 & Women in 2001.

Experience

I value the following awards because they were given by acknowlegement through my peers: The Nissen/Grissold Award given to the outstanding Tumbling and Tramp Athlete(1972), National High School coach of the year in 1981 for men and 2001 for women, 10 time County Coach of the Year. Medal Award given at the first World Tumbling Championships in London, England for dedication to the sport. Lastly, having the opportunity to coach Wes Suter(1988 Olympian)in his intermediate years and Dominique Dawes(1992 & 1996)

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