Midline Progressions on Parallettes

By Jeff Tucker and Jeannie Bassi

In Gymnastics/Tumbling, Videos

December 15, 2010

Video Article

“Oh my God, it’s rainin’ diamonds,” says Jeff Tucker, CrossFit Gymnastics coach, as he watches Jeannie Bassi demonstrate one of several positions requiring impressive core strength.

Beautiful gymnastics movement comes from lots of practice. Learn how you can practice planche progressions to improve your midline stabilization.

Using parallettes as an elevated platform, Tucker coaches gymnastics progressions to improve control and strength. You can develop an elevated planche by transitioning from basic tuck support to planche positions. As Bassi demonstrates, you can use a wall behind the parallettes for support and leverage. The wall helps you walk your feet into position for a straddle planche and to lower from a handstand into a straddle planche. Over time, you can move the parallettes further from the wall to provide less assistance as you develop the movements.

Watch as athletes at a CrossFit Gymnastics Certification try out the progressions and develop their gymnastics skills, and find out how these progressions can improve your own gymnastic ability and provide you with midline stability to apply to other CrossFit movements.

11min 54sec

Video by Again Faster.

Additional reading: Parallette Training Part 1 by Roger Harrell, published Feb. 1, 2006.

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12 Comments on “Midline Progressions on Parallettes ”


Frank DiMeo wrote …

Thanks! Very clear explanations & excellent demos.


wrote …

Great progressions. Thanks Jeff & Jeannie.


John Weiss wrote …

Very nice. Great work Jeannie


wrote …

Great stuff.

Really helps work the progressions out in my own garage... I love the "wall spotter", will help tons.

Thanks Jeff and Jeannie.

More Gymnastics insights on the main site would be awesome too. Lets have some fun with it. The Wackier the better...known and unknowable is where it's at.


wrote …

Thank you both very much! I had everyone working on this after the WOD and enjoying it a great deal.
As I was working on Step two, that pushing into a tucked planche position, I was surprised to discover how easy it is to keep going and end up completely inverted.

It made me think of those WOD's with the muscle-ups and transitions into handstand push ups. Ring HSPU's are a ways off, but at least I know how to get there.


wrote …

very cool...i love tucker vids


wrote …

Nice feedback. Glad to see we have folks who can use this stuff and get better and stronger.



wrote …

As always, you're a class act, really great progression, I'll have to add to the weekly routine. Every time I see your vids I want to do the cert all over again.
Semper Fi


wrote …

Great demos. Tucker you are a great coach. If anyone ever has a chance to attend a cert with Tucker you should go, even if you just want to learn to play around with gymnastics stuff and aren't really interested in coaching.


wrote …

When training the planche, do not let the scapula wing out and depress. Push the shoulders down, rounding the shoulder blades and upper back so it becomes-rounder.

An example of this is when doing those mad cat position in yoga.

As well, Jeannie Bassi, does not demonstrate the straddle planche. She demonstrates what is called a bent arm elbow lever in straddle or legs together/layout position. There is a big difference between the elbow lever and even a bent arm planche, much less a straight one.


wrote …

Jeff Tucker is excellent. These videos are indispensable and I'm getting far more than my CFJ money's worth just with Tucker vids. Thanks so much for this series. Impressive work by Jeannie as well, very inspiring to start these progressions and get somewhat near her abilities.


wrote …

Just wondering about set/reps/rest time etc for static holds. I read somewhere that 10 sets at 6 second holds with 45-90sec rest, would you agree?

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