Sports & Gaming

Vault Basics

Simone Biles

Lesson time 7:38 min

With eight-year-old Jurzie demonstrating, Simone walks you through the basics of vault, including feet to seat, high knees, deer runs, sprints, and front handspring flatback.

Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars

Topics include: Running Drills • Heel Kicks • High Knees • Deer Runs • Sprints • Vault Technique Drills • Front Handspring Flatback • Yurchenko Timer • Landing Drill


[MUSIC PLAYING] - Welcome to the vault. The most important fundamentals of vault are your speed, your height, and your form on and off the table. Growing up, I was always very powerful on the vault. But what I found most difficult was to stick my landings and perform on and off the table. And to fix some of those challenges, I really had to focus on the fundamentals with running drills, Yurchenko drills, and other spotting tips. Even though the height and the speed can be scary, if you really focus on the fundamentals you can really gain the confidence. And you can feel like you're flying, like me. In this section, Jersey Blue is going to show you some basic vault drills that will help you warm up, build strength, and practice speed on the runway. You only have 82 feet to reach maximum speed and power. So it's important to develop an efficient run from the start. Let's start with heel kicks. Make sure you keep your chest up and bring the heels of your feet up to your bum. Also keep your arms moving at a 90 degree angle. You should always practice good technique, no matter how simple the drill. This way, you won't develop bad habits like crossing your arms in front of your chest. [MUSIC PLAYING] The high knees drill is similar to heel kicks, except your knees you come toward your chest. Again, keep your chest up and arms at 90 degrees. But get your knees up as high as you can without leaning back. You can see Jersey Blue has great form here. She's on the balls of her feet. Her knees are up. And her arms are in the correct position. Up next are deer runs, a drill that works on your run up to the vault. Your focus should be on long, high strides. Lift your front knee high and extend through your back leg. You can see that Jersey's stride is uneven and that she's favoring one leg. Ideally, you want to maintain a steady rhythm and condition both legs evenly. It's good to be aware of how your body feels, so that you can seek support and prevent bad habits. [MUSIC PLAYING] Sprints are essential for building speed and the power needed to complete scales on the vault. They're also a great full body warm-up. When you sprint, you want to go as fast as you can while being in control. Pick your knees up and don't lean too far forward or back. It's important to be efficient and consistent on the lead up to the board. Start with the same foot and sprint at the same pace each time. [MUSIC PLAYING] On this drill, you'll execute a front handspring and land with a flat back onto a mat. This is when your running drills payoff. A strong sprint will help you get enough power off the board to drive your heels over your head. Keep your chest upright and sync your arm circle with your hurdle. When you hit the board, make sure you have a tight body position. Your chest is upright. You're squeezing your bum and legs together. And your arms are by your ears. When you punch, it should feel like you're leaning backwards. Remembe...

About the Instructor

At 22, Simone Biles is already a legend. With 14 medals, including 10 gold, Simone is the most decorated World Championship American gymnast of all time. Now the Olympic gymnast—part of the gold-medal-winning USA gymnastics "Final Five"—breaks down her techniques for vault, uneven bars, balance beam, and floor. Discover how Simone performs under pressure, learn to practice like a champion, and claim your competitive edge.

Featured Masterclass Instructor

Simone Biles

Gold-winning Olympic gymnast Simone Biles teaches her training techniques—from beginner to advanced—so you can practice like a champion.

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