Gym sports

Document Type



This study aims to investigate the influence of hand position on elbow and wrist joint coordination and variability during the back handspring in female gymnastics. Five national level female gymnasts performed five back handspring trials with “inward”, “parallel” and “outward” hand positions. Synchronised three-dimensional kinematic and kinetic data were collected and modified vector coding techniques were used to calculate wrist-elbow coordination. Self-organised coordination patterns were observed for the three hand positions. The “inward” displayed highest coordination variability (24.6o up to 60.5o) with the “parallel” displaying lowest variability (10.8o to 28.3o). Lower variability within the parallel technique may be more suited to gymnastics performance, with the “inward” contributing more towards overuse injury reduction.