May’s Acro and Jazz Workshop: Little Girls Tumbling

The second workshop this month was Acro and Jazz.  The younger students were up first, again, and they spent their first hour with Ms. Kelly doing their stretches and warm ups and then tumbling.

Stretching themselves out tall, long and lean.



Stretching their straddles.



Back bends.


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Back bends with leg extensions.

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Back bends, reaching for their ankles to get the fullest stretch.


Touching the floor (folding themselves in half.)



Half splits with back arches.

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Pulling those back legs up to touch their heads.

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More leg extensions to the back.

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Back bend kick overs.

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Straddle jumps.



Left and Right splits.

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Center splits.


Side Stretches.



With their bodies stretched out and warm, it was time to get moving.

First up, like always, were forward rolls.

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Then cartwheels.

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One armed cartwheels were next.

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Next up, were their aerials.

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Those who’ve “had” their aerials confidently for awhile, worked on putting them together with other movements, like this, where she starts in a heel stretch.

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There were other combinations as well.  Like this chest roll into a donut pose.

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And then there was still a lot more work on those aerials.

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There were also hand stands.

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And handstands which “fall” into a back bend and then are stood up straight.



Still more aerials.

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This next set is interesting and kind of fun.  So, this one student was struggling with her aerial, even with a spot.  She had her arms up near her head instead of down by her bottom and despite her flexibility she wasn’t getting her legs into the proper straddled position while in the air.



Ms. Lynne wanted her to see and feel what the correct position was like in the air, so she held her upside down in the air, like this….



And then she got herself into the right position.  There!  That is where the legs should be when she’s doing her aerials.  Perfect.



There were also lots of walkovers.  Mostly back walkovers, but a few front ones as well.

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Once the students get to a place where they can consistently complete the trick, the teacher’s get “picky” and start really pushing the girls for the very best straight legs and split positions and those (ever popular) beautifully pointed toes.

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Some of the littlest ones still use the “cheese” mat to do their walkovers (or back bend kickovers)but soon enough they’ll be transitioning these skills to the floor.



Here’s another student putting a heel stretch before her aerial.

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As the time was winding down, the students had the opportunity to practice their “thing of their choice.”  This results in everyone working on their favorite of all the tricks they have either newly mastered or are very close to hitting.

Like this chest roll.



And another one,again combination with a donut pose afterward.

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And those back walkovers.

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And even a couple of back handsprings.

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It was great class.  So many great tricks and lots of fun.

Before moving over to the back room for jazz, everyone gathered with Ms. Kelly and Ms. Marianne for a couple of group photos.

First, a silly one….




And then, a (more) serious one.



Great job everyone!