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Gymnastics is a sport involving the performance of sequences of movements requiring strength, flexibility, and kinaesthetic awareness. It developed from fitness exercises used by ancient Greek soldiers, as well incorporating cavalry skills for mounting and dismounting a horse, and circus performance skills.

Modern gymnastics, as regulated by the FIG (Federation International de Gymnastique) incorporates six distinct disciplines:

Of these disciplines, the two subdisciplines of artistic gymnastics are the best known, having been competed in every modern Summer Olympic Games.

The discipline of rhythmic gymnastics is competed only by women, and involves the performance of five separate routines with the use of five props (ball, ribbon, hoop, clubs, role) on a floor area, with a much greater emphasis on the aesthetic rather than the acrobatic. Rhythmic routines are scored out of a possible 30 points.

Sports aerobics involves the performance of routines by individuals or pairs, emphasising strength, flexibility, and aerobic fitness rather than acrobatic or balance skills. Routines are peformed on a small floor area and last 90 seconds (? - check this), being judged out of a total of (check how many points is maximum).

Trampolining routines involve a build-up phase during which the gymnast jumps repeatedly to achieve height, followed by a sequence of leaps without pauses during which the gymnast performs a sequence of aerial tumbling skills. Routines are marked out of a maximum score of (?).

For a list of famous gymnasts, see: gymnast.

See also: gymnast, Turners

External Links

FIG (Official Association)