Men’s Artistic Gymnastics

For boys Men’s Artistic Gymnastics (MAG) is aimed at preparing boys to gain selection in higher level ACT Teams that represent the ACT at National Championships each year. From here they may aim to gain selection in Australian Teams to go to World Championships, Commonwealth Games, the Olympic Games and a wide range of other international events. This means that those boys who want to work in the competitive streams need to start work early in order to master the skills and techniques on all six of the competitive apparatus, namely, Floor, Pommel Horse, Rings, Vault, Parallel Bars and Horizontal Bar. In the early stages they also work on Mushroom so that they learning the technique to do circles on Pommel.

Within the ACT, there are three separate competition pathways, all of which derive from the same basic routines but have different age and apparatus requirements. The pathways are as follows:

  • Australian Levels Under Age Program. The ‘Age Levels’ stream uses exactly the same compulsory routines as the Open Levels stream but each Level has an age restriction, eg Level 7 Under 12. The Age Level stream is designed to prepare boys for competition at the Elite highest levels. Boys in this stream do compulsory routines in their first years of competition at National Championships. These routines are designed to test the boys in all facets of the apparatus and are very difficult. If a boy or his coach decides that the gymnast is having difficulty with these routines or cannot train for the hours required to master them, then he can easily transfer into the Open Levels program.
  • Australian Levels Open Program. The most popular stream is the ‘Open Levels’ stream. This stream is the basic non-Elite stream and allows boys to progress through the Levels unrestricted by age requirements. Boys in this stream do Optional Routines earlier in their progression so they can concentrate on their strengths earlier. This means that, for example, if he is good at forward tumbling, he can do more of it and build his Floor routine around that sequence of skills and he does not have to do all the compulsory skills detailed in the prescriptive compulsory routines. However, if a gymnast continues in this stream he can still get to full International level, that is, Level 10 or Olympic level.
  • Gym for All Levels Program. Within the ACT, there is a third stream for boys called the Gym for All Levels Program. This stream is designed for gymnasts who only train for an hour or two each week. It has modified routines and does not include work on Pommel or Rings.

WVGC conducts classes in all the MAG Programs. Boys are invited to join the Australian Levels Program when they finish Kindergym or are assessed when they first join the Club. Boys will also be assessed while they are doing recreational gymnastics in the Gym for All (GfA) program to see if they have the ability and the drive to join the competitive streams. The Australian Levels Program requires training on a minimum of two or more days per week and this will increase as the boys progress up the Levels structure.

Boys who demonstrate a very strong desire and have exceptional aptitude will be invited to join the National Levels Program. This Program requires a very high level of motivation and commitment as training hours can increase up to over 20 hours per week.

For any further information regarding the MAG program please contact mag@wodenvalley.net

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