One of the staple tricks to teach to beginner students is how to straddle jump. As with other jumps like the tuck jump, your students will be able to pick up the straddle jump perfectly and easily, as the difficulty level is 0.

Also like the tuck jump, the straddle jump is a skill your class can repeat and practise simply, helping them build their confidence while working on new skills.

A straddle jump begins as a basic straight jump, but as you peak your bounce you raise your legs and stretch them out into a V shape. This is similar to what a gymnast would do in a floor routine as a block split, but instead, you try to touch your toes with your hands as you peak.

Here’s how to teach a straddle jump…

Step One: Make Sure They Stretch

Before you begin with your students, make sure they have stretched thoroughly, as a straddle jump requires flexibility and core muscle strength. If you don’t get your students to stretch it could mean that they pull a muscle or damage a ligament, especially if they haven’t done trampolining before, or it’s their first time trying this particular skill.

Step Two: Practise Makes Perfect

For students who have limited trampolining experience, it would be useful for them to practice on gym mats before getting on the trampoline.

Get your students to jump from the mat into the air, whilst making a V shape with their legs at the peak of their jump. As they jump they will need to bend their knees and extend their legs wide. Their legs will need to be stretched more than 90 degrees, as they use their arms to reach out to touch their toes.

This will get students into the habit of creating the correct move with their body while making sure that their back is straight, their toes are pointed, and their legs are extended.

Step Three: Get Them To Start With Straight Jumps

Next, get your students to start jumping on the trampoline as normal and practise their straight jumps. Make sure they feel confident in performing their straight jumps first, as they will need to gain height in order to perform the straddle jump to the best of their ability. The higher they are at the peak of their bounce, the better the form of their straddle will be, and the longer they will be able to hold the straddle jump position.

Step Four: Turning Straight Jumps To Straddles

Now that your students feel confident on the trampoline, get them to readdress the skill they have been practicing on the floor on the trampoline. They will need to bounce, and as they reach the top of their jump, extend their legs into the V shape. When the students are in the air, they will then need to use their hands and reach towards their toes. Don’t worry if your students can’t touch their toes straight away, as they practise and stretch more frequently they will get more flexible and it will get easier.

What Are The Common Mistakes?

Your students are likely to have uneven balance, especially if they are beginners. This may cause the students to fall forwards, affecting the quality of their straddle jump. Another common mistake is for students to make the shape too early, preventing them from reaching their maximum jump potential. This can again create uneven balance, and they will need to focus on an object on the wall directly in front of them, rather than looking at the trampoline bed in order to correct the issue.

Want To Know More About Teaching?

Our specialists at Elite Performance North West offer Continuing Professional Development in Gymnastics and Trampolining for teachers around the UK. We provide sessions for small groups and allow each and every teacher to have their questions answered, providing great value for money.

We can help all teachers ranging from beginner to advanced in all aspects of trampolining and gymnastics. If you want that extra boost to make a difference to your teaching then give us a call today or send us an email and learn how to teach skills such as the tuck and straddle jump easily.