Tuesday Tips- Tumble
Nemesis trick: Jenyne’s Tumble
Also Known As: Cartwheel off the pole, Slinky
Today’s tip covers the tumble that I first saw Jenyne Butterfly do. You can transition into it or out of it a ton of ways, and if your pole is tall enough you can do a few of them in a row! This is one of my favorite drops/tumbles to do on the pole, and it’s a ton of fun. If you can break it down into its components, it’s actually not as difficult as it looks. And if you familiarize yourself with the basics of the move in regular speed, you can work to gradually speed it up until it’s faster, smoother, and more awesome.
To begin working on it, you should be very comfortable with a brass monkey, and a flag. Essentially, you are going to be moving through those two tricks as you tumble down the pole. You should (ideally) be comfortable with flagging out of a layout, because the mechanics are exactly the same in the last part of the trick.
Before we start, let’s go over the video so that we can talk about this in context. Here’s a clip of me doing it slowly, so you can see all the different hand placements and movements easily (email readers, click here for the direct YouTube link):
I like to start from a climb, and then a bracket grip hold (either forearm grip or full bracket). You need to get your hips back and away from the pole, because you will need to trap the pole in your KNEE. Get it REALLY well and tight in there. Squeeze it with the leg. Really. If you go into this from a regular sit, it’s not impossible, but it does make it a little trickier to get a stable knee pit hold right from the beginning.
Whichever knee you clamp around the pole, know that you will end up with the OPPOSITE arm as your support arm when you flag out at the end. So if I hook my right knee, because that’s the knee I use for my brass monkey, I actually end up flagging with my left, non-dominate arm, as the bottom arm in my flag. If you do everything on both sides equally well, fantastic! Otherwise, pick the trick that you are least comfortable with, and use your dominant side for that.
So, you’re up the pole, with your knee clamped around the pole. As you clamp, shift your weight so that your hips are tilted down towards the bent knee. Release your inside (same side as bent knee) hand, and slide your outside hand down the pole with a bent arm so that it’s holding the pole about 6” up from your crotch. Continue to shift your hips to tilt toward the bent knee. Slowly straighten the top arm to lower yourself, sinking your butt down, so that your torso is nearly horizontal. Hook the elbow of your inside arm below your legs on the pole—as low as you can–wrapping the elbow UNDER the pole so that you can wrap your forearm and hand around the pole. Use your straight leg to press UP into the pole to keep the pole tucked into the knee pit of your bent leg.
From here, you should be able to release the top arm. Slide your forearm grip slowwwwly down the pole if you need to… you want your torso to be vertical and to have full contact with your entire forearm on the pole. You have quite a few points of contact: straight leg pressing into the pole, pole in your knee pit, forearm grip. Yes? They should all feel secure. Now grab the pole with your outside hand. If you grip the pole too high or too low, you won’t be able to use that arm to support you when you flag out—you’re going to have to feel it out. Remember that to control a flag, you want to brace the lower arm against the bottom of your ribcage/side of your belly as you come down, and use that guideline for placement of your hand.
Now, you should be all set up with a strong grip in both arms/hands, so you can release your legs. Bend your straight leg (allowing it to come out from behind the pole), straighten your bent leg (to release the hold from your knee). DON’T LET GO WITH YOUR HANDS. Get ready to take the weight of your body!! You can either fall so that you bend at the waist, and your hips fall straight forward (which looks like a more dramatic cartwheel), or you can keep your belly button facing the wall and use your obliques to control a slow flag down, which is always impressive.
Hope you have enjoy! If you have questions, suggestions, or comments, please let me know in the comments below.
Tomorrow’s post: They say it’s your birthday…