Gymnastics Skills and Combos That Should Be Banned

Jazmyn Foberg, a gymnast competing at the 2014 US Gymnastics Nationals, looks over at a teammate
Jared Wickerham / Getty Images

Take a look at some of the skills and combinations that should be considered for removal from the official rules, or Code of Points, by the International Federation of Gymnasts (FIG). These are not safety risks so much as moves that are too simple for elite competition and too uninteresting for viewing by spectators.

Women's Floor: Double Pike Dismount

Though the compulsory exercises have been gone from Olympic-level competition since 1997, it sometimes feels like the double pike (or the double tuck) is the compulsory floor dismount for women. It is too simple of a dismount for elite gymnasts.

Examples of riskier, more exciting dismounts include 2008 Olympic champion Sandra Izbasa from Romania who performed a triple full and runner-up American gymnast Shawn Johnson who performed the more difficult full-in dismount.

Men's Floor: Side Passes

A side pass on the men's floor, which is a tumbling pass performed anywhere on the floor beside the diagonal, is past its prime. If a gymnast can do a high-difficulty side pass it should stay in, but you do not need to see another male gymnast do a front 1 3/4 roll-out.

Women's Beam: Full Turn with Leg at Horizontal

Along with the double pike on floor, the full turn with leg at horizontal (Hollie Dykes performed one nicely at 0:59 in that video) has become a staple in most elite routines.

When done well, the skill looks nice, but the vast majority of gymnasts seem to have trouble keeping the leg held up. When the leg is not up, it gives a gymnast an unpolished, unattractive look to the routine.

Women's Beam: Front to Back Beam Series

So many gymnasts do the front-aerial to back handspring layout step-out that it is practically expected. What is missing from gymnastics are the many interesting acrobatic series as seen in the 1990s such as the handspring layout-layout.

Women's Bars: Shaposhnikova Overshot Handstand

The Shaposhnikova Overshot Handstand, or also known as the Shaposhnikova release, is impressive when it does not have an extra swing after it. It is usually combined with an immediate overshoot to handstand on the low bar, making it look like two extra swings. For an example, see U.S. gymnast Nicole Harris's bar routine from 2004 at 0:15.