Round-Off / Gymnastics

Round-Off (rondat) / Gymnastics

The round-off is a gymnastic floor skill used to turn horizontal energy into vertical energy. It's technically very similar to the cartwheel, only that now you land on both feet at the same time. Another important technical difference between round-off and cartwheel is that when you do a cartwheel you spread your legs, while when you do a round-off, you should close your legs when your reach vertical level. In this lesson I will explain how to execute a round-off and how to go from a round-off into a gymnastic back handspring. If you want to do a back flip variation after the round-off, the end is a bit different (you will find detailed information below). You should learn the cartwheel and the gymnastic handstand before you try the round-off. Find more gymnastics skills and training methods at artistic gymnastics main.


  • Start like if you were going to do a normal cartwheel. The first half of round-off and cartwheel are exactly the same (until the left hand touches the floor).
  • Stand upright and push your finger tips up as high as possible. Then lift the left leg and make a wide step forward. Keep all limbs fully extended and your trunk in line with your hands. Reach forward 1 body + arm length before you plant your left hand. For more info on how to do a gymnastic cartwheel, please visit the cartwheel tutorial.
  • Plant your left hand 90° to the running direction (fingers point to the left) and swing up the extended right leg. Extend knees and ankles. The right leg has to stay in one line with the trunk. Lock you arms with your head and your upper body. Lean forward like if you were doing a gymnastic front handspring and start turning your trunk shortly before you plant the left hand.
  • Then plant your right hand with the fingers pointing back and close your legs (knees and elbows fully extended). Try to close your legs before you reach vertical level.
  • Plant one hand after another, but push yourself off the ground with both hands at the same time. Create the push by shrugging your shoulders up, and also push with your hands. Don't bend your elbows, keep your abdominals tight and your knees straight.
    Round your body slightly, (see illustration) but not too much. When your hands leave the floor, the turning phase of the round-off should be over. You should NOT keep turning to the left during the second half of the round-off.
  • As you jump from your hands onto your feet, make sure your knees and your elbows remain extended. Round your back slightly and lock your head with your arms and your trunk.
  • If you want to do a back handspring after the round-off, land flat on your entire feet and keep going with the strength of your quadriceps. If you want to do a back flip variation, bounce off from the balls of your feet (with the strength of your calf muscles). In this lesson you will learn how to do a back handspring after the round-off. You should land with your hips in a vertical line with the feet (not with the hips in front of the feet - that would be too flat). Your hands should remain locked with your head and your trunk.
  • Sit down a little like if you were leaning against something but don't bend your knees too much. Beginners usually stop, push their knees forward and then do a static back handspring (static back handspring = without runup). That's ok if it's one of your first tries, but later you should lean back further and don't break the motion. The better you become, the less you will bend your knees at this point.
  • Extend your legs and push your hips up. Jump back with your hands acting like arrowheads. Keep your knees straight. Lock your head, your arms and your trunk. Hollow Your back slightly, but don't fully relax your abdominals. For more info check out the gymnastic back handspring tutorial.


  • Hands and feet have o be planted in a straight line (draw a straight line on the floor).
  • The round-off is easier if you run. For information on how to do the runup, please visit the gymnastic cartwheel tutorial. If you can do the static Round-Off, (without running)
    the running round-off will be a lot easier and smoother.
  • I recommend you try to combine round-off and BHS on a tumbling track first.