Rhythmic Gymnastics: Definition, History, Benefits, Elements, Types

Definition of Rhythmic Gymnastics – Rhythmic gymnastics is a type of gymnastics that has various movements and is carried out in rhythm with the accompanying music. This gymnastics is not an ordinary gymnastics, but has elements that must be mastered by the gymnasts, such as flexibility, balance, accuracy with rhythm, and others.

The series of gymnastics usually starts with walking, running, jumping, swinging, or spinning. This gymnastics is also often called rhythmic gymnastics, which can be played with tools such as clubs, hoops, ropes, ribbons, and balls.

Definition of Rhythmic Gymnastics

As the name implies, this gymnastics is always done to the accompaniment of certain music, therefore rhythmic or rhythmic gymnastics is included in the branch of artistic gymnastics. Gymnasts who perform can be individually or in groups, for sure the movements always have choreography that has nuances of acrobatics, modern dance, and ballet.

In the Olympics, rhythmic gymnastics is also often used as a competition, even to the international level. His role in the Olympics is also one of the differences with aerobic exercise, which is only done to maintain health and fitness. Moreover, when doing aerobics, it will usually be guided by an exercise guide.

Until now this type of exercise is only for women. But in the end, Japan became a country that pioneered men’s rhythmic gymnastics. The pioneers of this gymnastics originally came from Europe, and were initiated by several experts in the field of art.

Then in its development, this gymnastics adopted many techniques in ballet dance, so that this rhythmic gymnastics was more loved by women. Therefore, even now, gymnastics is still synonymous with women, so it is women who do a lot of rhythmic gymnastics.

The History of the Existence of Rhythmic Gymnastics

There are several names of figures who have influenced the history of rhythmic gymnastics. They were Jean George Noverre (1727-1810), Rudolf Bode (1881-1970), and Francia Delsartre (1811-1871). They believe that the expression of motion created by a person using his body with a certain sequence of motion is very important.

These three ideas then gave rise to rhythmic gymnastics. However, the idea was later forwarded by Peter Henry Ling, who in the 19th century created the Swedish System, a free movement that eventually developed into aesthetic gymnastics. This gymnastics requires an athlete to express himself with his emotions and feelings through body movements.

In its development, the idea was continued by Catharine Beecher, a founder of the Western Female Institute in 1837 in Ohio, United States. He created a program called grace without dancing , which asked female gymnasts to perform gymnastics from simple to complex movements to musical accompaniment. Since then, many ideas have emerged about the body, body expression, and music and various types of movement.

Then, in 1900, a school called the Swedish Gymnastic Rhythmic and other gymnastic schools developed the style with various combinations. After that in 1929, Hinrich Medau, founded a school in Berlin while creating a modern gymnastic idea.

He created a modern gymnastics with a different style than before, but still maintains the basics of the previous style. Medau is also the one who later pioneered the existence of a gymnastic movement system using various types of tools, such as ropes, balls, ribbons, hoops, and clubs. This performance by Medau then presented something different, such as contemporary ballet, acrobatics, and dance performances.

Gradually these gymnastic movements became rhythmic gymnastics, which were contested in a competition. In 1940 rhythmic gymnastics competitions began to be held in Russia. FIG itself in 1996 began to include rhythmic gymnastics as one of the branches of gymnastics. Initially this exercise was given the name gymnastic, then changed to rhythmic gymnastics, and the last change became rhythmic gymnastics or rhythmic gymnastics.

From here then emerged the international competition. The first individual competition was held in Budapest in 1963. After that group or group competitions were held in Denmark in 1967. Only later in 1984 the individual category of competition entered the Olympics in Los Angeles. While the competition for the category of new groups or groups began in 1996 at the Atlanta Olympics.

Elements of Rhythmic Gymnastics

As mentioned above, rhythmic gymnastics has several elements. Here are the elements:

1. Beauty

As gymnastics that uses rhythm, this gymnastic movement has an element of beauty. Where this gymnastics comes from the performance area, so that the element of beauty in movement becomes an important point in rhythmic gymnastics.

2. Skills

The second element of this gymnastics is skill. In rhythmic gymnastics, one of the values ​​is creativity or skill in moving the body and making choreography. If this gymnastics is being contested, then the value that is calculated the most usually comes from movement skills. The more flexible and varied the movements made, the higher the value.

3. Dexterity

Then there is flexibility, where this element is also a marker of how deep a person is doing gymnastics. Because flexibility can be created from how to compose choreography and practice regularly. Besides emanating from body movements, flexibility is also obtained from other movements.

4. Flexibility

The fourth element is flexibility, which is also important. Because rhythmic gymnastics is also closely related to the nuances of ballet and acrobatics, whose movements must be flexible. In addition, both must also be followed by body gestures that usually use extreme joints and body curves.

5. Strength

Every exercise requires energy. When doing this exercise, you must also have strength. Strength is also needed in performing various rhythmic gymnastic movements. Without strength, of course, gymnastic movements will be meaningless.

6. Balance

Then there is the element of balance in doing rhythmic gymnastics movements. This element is mainly used when performing a fairly complex choreography. Difficult gymnastic movements also require balance, such as rotating the body on one leg, or catching a ball.

7. Rhythm accuracy

The last element in rhythmic gymnastics is the accuracy of each movement with the rhythm. Because this exercise does not only depend on the count of beats. An athlete in rhythmic gymnastics also has to calculate the time when the tool must be thrown and caught. In addition, every movement must also match the beat of the music playing.

Benefits of Rhythmic Gymnastics for Body Health

Rhythmic gymnastics is one type of sport that is in great demand by women. Because it is included in the list of sports, it is not surprising that this exercise has many health benefits for the body.

One of them is that it can burn excess fat in the body. Every element in gymnastic movements such as flexibility and balance must be carried out in accordance with the musical accompaniment used.

So, actually this sport is practically the opposite of strenuous exercise such as cycling, swimming, or jogging. This sport requires the strength of the lungs and heart. However, even though rhythmic gymnastics does not require both, there are many health benefits for the body that does gymnastics. Here are some of the benefits of this rhythmic gymnastics:

1. Practice balance

Balance is one of the elements of gymnastics that needs to be met. With this element, you can also train balance in the body. So that it can help maintain posture and minimize the risk of bending the spine.

2. Increase muscle strength

If you often do rhythmic gymnastics, the muscle tissue in the body will be stronger and more flexible. Because there are many light movements that can be done during gymnastics. This of course makes the body reach more movements.

Moreover, the longer you practice, the muscles will also be more comfortable to move. So with rhythmic gymnastics, you have the opportunity to prevent the body from getting injured when you have to do many activities or physical movements in daily activities.

3. Optimizing brain function

The third benefit of this exercise is that it can optimize brain function. Because when the exercise takes place there will be a rhythm that must be considered. Musical accompaniment that becomes the rhythm is believed to be able to reduce hormones that can make stress, such as the hormones cortisol and epinephrine. Both hormones will later become antidepressants in the form of norepinephrine.

4. Helping mental health

The four benefits that can be obtained are mental health. According to a study, children who do rhythmic gymnastics can have much better problem-solving and focus skills. So that the academic value of the children will also increase. Then for adults, rhythmic gymnastics is believed to relieve stress and maintain their mental health.

5. Increase flexibility in children

Fifth, for children who often do rhythmic gymnastics, of course they already know that this gymnastic movement is actually quite complicated. The difficulty is because usually it will demand the elasticity of the body which for some children needs special training.

So when this movement is done regularly, it can help children gain flexibility and stability, thus making their muscles stronger. In addition, with this exercise children can also increase their appetite and metabolism.

6. Train children’s concentration

In carrying out every movement, it is not only physically that must be active. But also must activate the focus in every movement that has been planned.

Especially when exercising, besides paying attention to the movement, you also have to listen to the rhythm, so that the movement can be more harmonious with the existing rhythm. That way, memory and attention are also trained here. Therefore, in addition to training the body physically, rhythmic gymnastics also trains focus and concentration.

7. Help increase self-confidence and self-esteem in children

There are many elements that must be met when doing this exercise, such as flexibility, balance, flexibility, agility, and elegance. With so many elements, of course there will be many things that children learn during gymnastics. It was also able to help children to be more active and confident.

Because in carrying out their movements they must be maximal and will be assessed by the instructor or coach. In the end, children will also learn to be more confident in moving and appreciate their abilities. Because gymnastics is also not all easy to do. There are various movements that require repeated practice in order to look flexible and graceful.

Types of Rhythmic Gymnastics

Along with the development of the times, rhythmic gymnastics, which used to be called rhythmic gymnastics, is now not only done with bare hands. Some competitions for rhythmic gymnastics have used aids as gymnastic properties, such as ribbons, balls, hoops, clubs, and ropes. These five gymnastics can be played both in teams and individually. To find out the types of rhythmic gymnastics with tools, see the explanation below:

1. Rhythmic gymnastics with a ball

The first tool commonly used in rhythmic gymnastics is the ball. The balls used are of medium size, neither too small nor too big. As long as the ball is easy to hold, then you can use it as a tool when exercising.

These balls are usually made of rubber or plastic. In some competitions, the ball used has a diameter of 18-20 cm and weighs 400 grams. Movements using the ball include throwing the ball up and catching it again, or it can be by rolling the ball towards the gymnast.

2. Rhythmic gymnastics with a ribbon

Ribbons or ribbons can also be used as tools in this exercise. The ribbon used is made of a smooth material such as satin. The length of the tape is usually 6 meters, not including the stick handle. The weight of the tape itself is around 35 grams.

Then the stick used comes from wood or bamboo with a length of 50-60 cm and a diameter of 1 cm. This gymnastic movement with a ribbon stick is like swinging, twisting like a snake, forming a figure 8, spiral, and various kinds of throws.

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