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Introductions to the types of competitive gymnastics

Acrobatic gymnastics

Acrobatic gymnastics is a form of gymnastics that requires strength, skill and balance and involves the athletes lifting each other and throwing each other in the air. The process of practising acrobatics begins with basic moves, such as rolls and headstands, that are performed alone. As the gymnasts gain more strength and skill, they progress to more demanding moves and soon also lifts performed with others.

At the competitive level, the collaborative moves, such as lifts and throws, are at the core of the sport. In acrobatics, gymnasts can compete in pairs, trios, groups of four or as part of a large acroshow group. Gymnasts also compete alone in the acro blocks event, which was developed as a form of supplementary exercise. The highest level features separate series for men and women, but boys and girls compete together in the lower categories.

Aesthetic group gymnastics

The heart of aesthetic group gymnastics is in Finnish women’s gymnastics. The roots of the sport are in Finland but the branches have extended around the world – women’s gymnastics has grown into a demanding and exciting elite-level sport.

In aesthetic group gymnastics, every movement is part of the whole and the entire team performs the movements at exactly the same time. The competition routine is honed for hundreds of hours to ensure its artistic and athletic merits and dazzle the audience with perfectly synchronised motion. The sport combines music, storytelling, pure motion and coordination. This is why the gymnasts need speed, strength, mobility and excellent coordination. The sport of aesthetic group gymnastics has spread around the world and an international elite-level sport.

Aerobic gymnastics

Aerobic gymnastics blends visually impressive and energetic choreography with difficulty movements, acrobatics and engaging music.

A vigorous jump into the air and a landing directly into a push-up pose. Engagement and explosive energy. Strength and astounding control that seems effortless but is the result of countless hours of practice. Aerobic gymnastics is a sport that develops the athlete’s creativity, courage as a performer, strength, mobility, coordination and anaerobic stamina.

Men’s artistic gymnastics

In men’s artistic gymnastics, participants practice and compete in six events: floor exercise, pommel horse, still rings, vault, parallel bars and horizontal bar

Artistic gymnasts are very familiar with handstands, somersaults and chalk dust. The gymnasts perform amazing acrobatic moves upside down, sideways, standing on their hands and on their feet. The sport requires and builds strength, mobility, stamina, flexibility, control and coordination. As such, artistic gymnastics is an excellent support for others sports.

Women’s artistic gymnastics

In women’s artistic gymnastics, participate compete in four events: vault, uneven bars, balance beam and floor exercise.

Women’s artistic gymnastics combines technique and aesthetics with strength and mobility, resulting in the sport being one of the most demanding and difficult in the world.

The gymnast balances herself on a beam that is 10 centimetres wide. The movements look effortless, but the secret lies in the hundreds of repetitions that have come before. Women’s artistic gymnastics combines technique and aesthetics with strength and mobility, resulting in the sport being one of the most demanding and difficult in the world.

Rhythmic gymnastics

Rhythmic gymnastics is a sport where gymnasts perform skilful movements with an apparatus.

The competition routine involves the gymnast conducting movements of varying difficulty to music, forming a smoothly flowing performance. As the apparatus, individual gymnasts can use a ball, hoop, clubs, rope or ribbon.

In rhythmic gymnastics, athletes compete as individuals or teams. Mobility, coordination, a sense of rhythm, expressiveness through movement and psychological fortitude are among the most important traits of successful rhythmic gymnasts. In order to create the illusion of effortlessness, top-level gymnasts have usually spent countless hours at the ballet studio and with a variety of exercises related to the sport.

Flow gymnastics

Flow gymnastics is a sport based on traditional Finnish women’s gymnastics. It combines dance and gymnastics and engages a large number of Finnish women, both young and old, in physical activity.

The versatility of flow gymnastics provides hobbyists and instructors with a wealth of opportunities and enticing challenges. Those interested can take part in lighter or more goal-oriented activities. In addition to recreational groups, a variety of opportunities for performing and competing are also available.


In TeamGym, participants complete in three events: the floor programme, tumbling and trampet. It is truly a sight to behold when an entire team of gymnasts moves in sync performing impressive somersaults one after the other. TeamGym is a great example of what an aesthetically beautiful and athletic experience a team sport can be: astonishing somersaults on the trampet and tumbling mat, and synchronised moves in the floor programme in precise and symmetrical formations.

Trampoline gymnastics

Trampoline gymnastics is formed by three sports: trampoline, double mini-trampoline and tumbling. In Finland, athletes mainly focused on the first two.

Double and triple somersaults at a staggering height of eight metres. The gymnast changes rotation direction and lands with ease, ready to bounce up right away for the next daring jump.

You can take up trampoline gymnastics at any age. The process of practising begins with easier jumps to which somersaults and twists are added as skills improve. The physical attributes important to a trampoline gymnast include balance, coordination and core control. People of all ages and skill levels can engage in trampolining, since the learning process progresses in steps from basic moves to more difficult ones. The range of possible moves is large, so there is always something new to learn. If you have always had your head in the clouds rather than your feet on the ground, trampolining might be just the sport for you.