The Modalities and Benefits of Acrogym
If you think that the word “acrogym” refers to acrobatics combined with gymnastics, then you’re right. Keep reading to learn how to practice this sport and its benefits!
It’s possible that you’ve probably seen a group of people doing jumps, spins, pyramids, and incredible stunts in the middle of a basketball game at some point. That’s acrogym. It’s a type of sport practiced with music and a lot of flair.
It’s also known as acrosport, acrogymnastics, or acrobatic gymnastics. In fact, the name combines a bit of both activities: Acrobatics and gymnastics, particularly rhythmic gymnastics.
In this article, you’ll learn what this sport consists of, what its routines are like, as well as the benefits of acrogym. Although its movements may seem complicated, you don’t have to be an Olympic gymnast to enjoy this experience!
Acrogym is a show sport based on gymnastic movements, such as somersaults and flips, with some choreographed steps and even some elements of dance.
The practice of acrobatic gymnastics was born in the former Soviet Union. In 1974, the first championship of this modality was held, which is part of the International Federation of Acrobatic Sports, as well as of the International Gymnastics Federation.
Today, there are acro gymnastics clubs for children and young people. Also, many gyms include acrogym routines or offer them as part of their program for all ages.
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What are the benefits of acrogym?
Some acrosport movements can be performed as solo exercises, although the shows are in pairs or small groups. The most important thing is that, no matter how you practice acrogym, it provides various benefits.
Let’s take a closer look.
The physical benefits
From a physical point of view, the practice of acrogym increases strength and control, as well as flexibility and coordination. All this translates into better muscle tone and a more efficient body response.
Likewise, it’s an intense and demanding physical activity that helps burn fat and calories. This makes it ideal for those who are looking for a plan to lose weight while maintaining the firmness of their skin.
It exercises the muscles of the lower back and the back in general. Thanks to this, people who practice acrogym reinforce the maintenance of a correct posture.
And of course, being an aerobic activity in which the rhythm of breathing and heartbeat is raised, acrogym routines contribute to cardiovascular health.
The emotional benefits
Since it’s closely related to dance, the benefits of acrogym are the same as those of dance. In that sense, it helps to deal with stress and discouragement, making you relax and have fun for a while.
At the same time, research has concluded that acro-gymnastics improves the self-concept of people with physical or emotional problems, since the participant feels accepted, involved, and like part of the group.
The movements performed in acrogym are demanding and may produce fear or insecurity. However, when the person faces these kinds of challenges and can overcome them, they free themselves from fears and can face other kinds of situations or difficulties in their personal life.
Acrogymnastics is, therefore, ideal to help reinforce self-esteem and increase a sense of self-improvement. In this sense, according to studies on cooperation in physical activity, when one member achieves a goal, the rest of the team feels that they’ve achieved it as well.
The social benefits
Performing group movements in acrobatic gymnastics requires good organization and cooperation with teammates. This improves a fundamental skill that’s highly valued today: The ability to work as part of a team.
In this regard, research indicates that the sense of collaboration and sociability are skills that are also increased thanks to the practice of acrogym, as many of the exercises require more than one person.
Other benefits of acrogym
Acrobatic gymnastics improves the sense of rhythm and coordination between what’s heard and what’s done with the body. This makes it ideal for working on proprioception and developing motor skills.
Likewise, acrosport encourages the creativity of participants, who must invent new figures to vary their routines.
Finally, it strengthens a sense of responsibility and the skills associated with leadership, since everyone must take on a task and accomplish it. Eventually, you’ll also have to assume the role of captain or group leader.
Be sure to read: Psychological Benefits of Physical Activity
What do acrogym routines consist of?
In competitions, acrogym routines are classified into five groups or categories, according to the number and sex of the participants:
- Couples: Female, male, and mixed
- Groups: Consisting of three women or four men
However, in exhibitions, such as those that take place for animation within a sports show or other kinds of events, it’s not unusual to have a variable number within the group, from trios with two men and a woman to quintets, sextets, and more.
On the other hand, participants must complete their exercise routine within a stipulated time, from two and a half to three minutes, although this may vary depending on the competition.
The acro gymnasts have to perform several types of exercises:
- Strength, flexibility, and balance routines, holding each figure for a minimum time.
- Dynamic routines of somersaults, jumps, spins, throws, and landings.
In general, the movements should include acrobatic and gymnastic elements, as well as others involving cooperation among the members of the group. In the competitions, the juries evaluate the execution according to the degree of difficulty of the figures.
Tips for practicing acro gymnastics
If you’re interested in enjoying the benefits of acrogym, you should take into account some recommendations. To begin with, the most fundamental thing to keep in mind is that if you’re not in good shape, you should improve your physical condition, as this sport’s quite demanding.
It’s best to join a group that has a similar level to your own because the coordination of the team is essential. For this purpose, you can look for classes for beginners at gyms in your area.
As in all sports, the appropriate clothing and footwear must be worn. You need to have a wide, ventilated space, with some cushioning on the floor to reduce impacts when landing or in case of falls.
Are you interested in acrogym?
Seen from a distance, as spectators, acro gymnastics can be an attractive and dazzling activity. However, it’s important to remember that the initiation into any sport involves a gradual process and adaptation.
You must be patient and take it step by step, one day at a time. Likewise, you must know how to handle frustration when things don’t go well and respect and tolerance if one of your teammates fails.
Finally, we must remind ourselves that the important thing about this and any other practice is that you relax and enjoy it rather than stressing yourself out. Have fun with it!It might interest you...