Championship Series in focus - rhythmic gymnastics

With the Championship Series just over a month away, over the course of the next four weeks we’ll be featuring each of the four disciplines. To start things off, we introduce you to the most elegant gymnastics discipline. Taking place on Friday 28th, Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th July, combining grace, coordination, agility and artistry, here’s the run-down on RHYTHMIC GYMNASTICS.

Accompanied by stirring music, the gymnast uses small hand apparatus to weave a routine of flawless beauty moulding gymnast, music and apparatus into one.

The handling of apparatus whilst performing complex turns, pivots, balances and contortionist like movements are characteristic trademarks of this stunning gymnastics discipline.

Providing participation opportunities for individual or groups, rhythmic gymnastics is the perfect sport for those who love dance and movement to music and where personality and expression are at the forefront.

The rope is made of hemp or synthetic material. The length may change in proportion to the size of the gymnast and instead of a handle, each end of the rope terminates in a knot.

Routines can be performed with the rope open or folded, held with one or both hands, with or without the rope changing hands. The relationship between the rope and the gymnast is key with the rope often wrapping around the gymnast. Flexibility, agility,

and gracefulness combine with passion and skills to make the perfect rope routine.

The hoop is composed of wood or plastic and its inner diameter can range from 80 to90 centimetres. The minimum weight of the hoop is 300 grams. The hoop must be rigid enough to retain its shape when used in a routine.

The hoop carves a space that must be fully used by the gymnast, as when she passes through the hoop or when the apparatus rotates around any part of her body. Frequent grip changes require well-developed coordination and the shape of the hoop is ideal for rolling and rotating on the floor or on different parts of the body. 

The clubs may be made of wood or synthetic material and their length is between 40 to 50 centimetres. Each club weighs 150 grams. 

Clubs provide games for the hands. The gymnasts perform rotations, circles, throws, and many asymmetric movements in combination with complex movements of the body. Club handling requires rhythmic work, coordination, and perfect precision.

The ball is made of rubber or synthetic material and its diameter is between 18 to 20 centimetres. The weight of the ball must be a minimum of 400 grams.

The ball is the only piece of apparatus that can never beheld, it may only be balanced on the body or rolled over. This requirement results in a perfect union between the body of the gymnast and the apparatus. The spectacular throws of the ball are in neat contrast with the softness and precision of the catches, both of which are also requirements of the routine.

The ribbon stick is 50 to 60 centimetres in length and 1cmin diameter. It is typically made of wood, bamboo, plastic or fibreglass. The ribbon is made of satin or a similar material without starch. The maximum weight of the ribbon is 35 grams, its width is between 4 to 6 centimetres, and its length is a minimum of 6 metres.

The ribbon is a long, flexible and light piece of apparatus that shapes patterns in space. When used by the gymnast, its aerial movements carve forms and images. Snakes, spirals and throws represent the main routine elements when using the ribbon.

Want to see the best of rhythmic gymnastics? Tickets for the Championship Series are on sale now. Get your tickets to see all of the action.