Parallel Bars - Gymnastics Apparatus

Parallel Bars - Gymnastics Apparatus

The parallel bars is a gymnastics apparatus for men. The gymnast performs swings, balances and releases on two wooden bars (only your hands can touch the bars). This gymnastics apparatus requires a lot of strength and coordination. Find instructions for the parallel bars at gymnastics main.


  • The two wooden bars are parallel and between 42 and 52 cm apart (depends on your shoulder width). The 350 cm long bars are located 195 cm from the floor, but the 20 cm thick landing mats make the actual distance to the landing area a bit shorter (175 cm).
    In kids gymnastics competitions the bars are usually lowered a bit (the height of the bars is adjustable).
  • A metal or steel frame supports the wooden bars. Kids parallel bars apparatus sometimes
    have plastic bars.
  • The parallel bars are usually mounted with a special mounting skill.
  • The bars are dismounted off the ends of the bars or off the side. The landing must be a stuck landing (landing on both feet at the same time without an extra step). A typical dismount would be a back flip over the side of the apparatus.


  • When you learn new skills, make sure you have enough mats around the apparatus.
  • At the beginning, handstands and strength acts are often practiced on low parallel bars just a few inches from the floor first. Most gymnastics gyms have wooden mini-bars that can be placed on the floor for this purpose. This way you avoid dangerous falls. Many parallel bar skills can also be performed on the floor (static holds - handstand turns etc.)
  • Train your forearms to avoid wrist injuries.