Whether you’re a man or a woman, if you’re a competitive gymnast you’re going to need specific abilities to perform at your peak. Gymnasts need a high strength-to-weight ratio -- the ability to lift far more weight than their body weight -- along with flexibility, muscular and cardiovascular endurance and a superior sense of balance. Training for these criteria includes aerobic exercise, weight training and sport-specific exercises. Here is a sample workout plan that you can use in the gym. Consult a doctor before starting a new exercise program.
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Work on cardiovascular training to get your muscles hot and ready for the workout to come. Spend time on an elliptical trainer or a treadmill, working at 65 to 75 percent intensity for at least 30 minutes. The rest of today’s workout focuses on an overall body workout that includes strength training for your abdomen. Performing lunges, jumping lunges and squats is the plan for today. Upper-body exercises include dips, push-ups on medicine balls and chin-ups. Focus on stretching your muscles to their maximum while they’re hot to develop the flexibility of competitive gymnasts.
Today’s workout will include exercises for your core and a whole body workout. Today begins with a cardiovascular warm-up followed by three sets of maximum repetitions of abdominal exercises. Do V-ups, Roman chair exercises, Russian twists with a medicine ball and pelvic thrusts. Your whole body workout includes back, arm and leg exercises tailored specifically for you. Stretch your muscles after they’re hot to help develop flexibility and prevent injury.
Begin with an aerobic workout to get your blood pumping. After your warm-up and cardio workout, you will go back to working on your core and abs with exercises like the wood chop, the bicycle and bridging exercises. Stretch your muscles with exercises that help maximize the amount of lengthening and shortening your muscles can undergo. Following your core workout, you’ll spend time developing explosive power with a plyometric workout that includes box jumping, medicine ball exercises and other sport-specific exercises to give you that burst of power you need in gymnastics.
Today’s workout is essentially more of the same, with the exercises varied a bit to help you avoid muscle fatigue and burnout. Start with aerobics to get your blood pumping. Work your core muscles with a variation of wood chopping, bridging and bicycling. Your upper-body strength training should include exercises designed to develop strength as well as power. The military press, bench press and push-ups help give you the strength-to-weight ratio needed to excel in gymnastics competition.