The backhand spring trick may seem difficult at first glance, but in practice, it is one of the easiest trampoline tricks you can learn.
This trick is one of the basic building blocks for most gymnast aiming to improve on their physical fitness. Doing a backhand spring requires one to build his upper strength especially the arms and the shoulder.
Although there isn’t a one-step trick to executing the backhand spring, you can learn this move through the series of steps compiled in this guide.
It is important to note that one must be comfortable doing some basic trampoline tricks such as handstand, backbend, walkover, backward drop, and the twisted cartwheel before attempting to do a backhand spring.
How to do a Back Handspring on a Trampoline for Beginners
Below are the six (6) easy steps that will have you bossing this trampoline maneuver in no time.
Get a partner
If you are trying a back handspring for the first time, make sure you have someone to watch you probably a fellow gymnastics enthusiast or a coach. This will help prevent you from hurting yourself and will also give you the confidence needed to master the backhand spring. Make sure your partner is someone who will pay attention and is ready to assist if need be.
Practice simple moves on the floor such as;
Simply start by standing up straight with your arms over your head. Let your body fall forward and place your palms firmly on the floor. Raise one of leg up and allow the second leg to follow naturally. Keep yourself up on your palms in a straight position by tightening up your core and buttock muscles. Hold yourself in that position for 30 to 60 seconds and repeat the process 4 or 5 more times.
• Do a backbend
You can do this by first standing up straight on your feet, then lift your hands and look up at the sky, push your body forward and slowly bend backward keeping your arms locked. Place your hands firmly on the floor and also keep your feet in place. Do this for 10-30 seconds and then finally lower yourself to the ground.
• Try a back walkover.
Once you are comfortable doing a handstand and backbend, the next step is to practice a walkover. You can do that while you are in the backbend position. Just lift one of your legs off the ground, swing it towards your head and push the other leg off the ground too and allow it to follow naturally.
Try doing the backward drop
This is the fastest way to overcome the fear of executing the backhand spring. Wait, did I just said you are scared? Well, that is not something to worry about even if you are. After all, flipping your body and swinging it head over tail with little ground contact in between is not the easiest trampoline movement to learn but we are getting there.
Practicing the backward drop
You start from a standing position on the trampoline, then simply practice falling directly backward onto your back. This will be helpful in making you feel comfortable with the sensation of falling backward. I call it a trust fall on the trampoline. It is cool to do and no risk associated with it except you play and fall off on the wrong position.
Repeat this step ten or more times until you get comfortable falling backward on the trampoline.
Do a backdrop roll
This style of a backdrop roll may slightly differ from that of other tutors.
Here instead of twisting your spines into a backwards bridge and flipping over (which will be very difficult for most adult), it is going to be a backdrop roll progression.
Practicing the backdrop roll
Let start with the basics, from a standing position, just roll backwards over your shoulders on the trampoline. If you are doing this for the first time, don’t stress, take it easy, this is not difficult to do. Just make sure your body stays fully in contact with the trampoline at all the time. You are unlikely to sustain any injury even if you make a mistake.
Then build up a little, this time instead of rolling the whole way through, you can try bouncing off your back and continuing into the roll with a little more strength. You may be slightly carried by air here, however, you don’t need to worry about the under or over rotating. You can always use your hands, knees or elbows to catch yourself.
Repeat this step (movement) progressing from the backward roll to the backdrop roll.
Try the twisted cartwheel
Though this step may feel as if we are backtracking but it is also as important as the other steps listed.
In order to do a perfect back handspring, it is very important for one to get comfortable using his hands.
As you already know, a trampoline has an even surface but when you apply pressure on it, it stretches out and compresses. Placing all your weight on this material through your hands is something that may take a while getting used to. As we move closer to the final step of the back handspring trick progression, lets try our hands on something new.
Practicing a twisted cartwheel
Here, you are going to be facing the same direction as you did in the last two steps. And then instead of falling backward, this time you are going to twist around into a regular cartwheel. Try and hold the backwards fall for as long as possible and then finally trick yourself into doing a cartwheel. This step will help you to get the feeling of falling back onto your hands and at the same time prepare you to push-off with your arms for the last step
Repeat this step several times until you are able to perform the twisted cartwheel from a few bounces.
Unlike the normal cartwheel that requires one to place each hand down separately, here you can plant both palms down at the same time. This will help protect your wrists from taking all your bodyweight at a time and also prepares you for the final step
The back handspring
Before you rush into the back handspring, we recommend you go over some backward drops and backdrop rolls once more.
Now to the final step, here instead of twisting into your side-on cartwheel, simply throw your body backward and have your hands outstretched. Then whip your neck and your arms back quickly so you can find the floor as early as possible to avoid falling on the wrong position. Then place your hands down firmly and at the same time. Well, you may under or over rotate for the first few times when starting. Don’t worry; this is just fine. Keep practicing.
Note: always lead with your hands and make sure you get enough height on your starting bounces
Unlike in the case of a backflip, you are not trying to jump straight up and down. Here you want to push-off backward with your take-off, and then catch yourself when you are about half a body length behind you with your hands.
Again, this may take a while to grasp, but if you follow the progression steps leading to the final step and you keep on practicing, you are going to master the backhand springing much sooner than you expect.