In addition to the high level of skill required to be a gymnast, to be successful you need, among other things, good strength, flexibility, balance and coordination and have the right body shape! However, which of these are more important? Below is a discussion about the fitness requirements for gymnastics, which can help with developing training programs for this sport, and for interpreting fitness testing results and determining the relative strengths and weaknesses of a gymnast.
The results of all three polls has flexibility as the most important physical attribute for a gymnast. Also, coordination and strength are clearly important too.
You just need to be flexible
Our first poll on this subject asked what you thought was The most important attribute for success in female gymnastics? Out of five options, flexibility was chosen half the time, followed by strength and power (31%), body size and shape (11%) and looks (6%), and other (2%).
You need to be flexible, coordinated and strong
A follow-up poll added a few more options about the component of fitness most important for success in gymnastics. Out of the options of Body Size and Composition, Muscle Strength, Muscular Endurance, Power, Speed / Quickness, Agility, Flexibility, Balance and Coordination, and Cardiovascular Endurance, the factors which are considered most important by the readers of this site again was flexibility (41%), then balance and coordination (21%) and muscle strength (10%). You can add your vote too, and see the latest results.
Again, You need to be flexible, coordinated and strong
In a similar poll, we have asked people to rate the 12 factors of success for sports. Visitors to this site have rated each of these factors for the sport of gymnastics, and the most important according to them are: flexibility, strength & power, and balance and coordination. Skill and technique is also rightly up there with these. You can also add your ratings of Which Factors Make Successful Gymnast, and see the latest results.
Most Important Factors for Success in Order of Importance (data from 2018)
4.4 Strength & Power
4.4 Balance & Coordination
4.4 Skill and Technique
4.3 Motivation & Self Confidence
4.0 Coping with Pressure Situations
3.9 Speed / Quickness
3.8 Reaction Time
3.7 Body Size and Composition
3.7 Aerobic Endurance
3.3 Analytic & Tactical Ability
Are You an Expert?
I have found that asking all site visitors for their opinion, while it is interesting, does not always lead to accurate results. We want to know what the experts think. If you consider yourself an expert in gymnastics, go here to add your opinion.