Did you know there are 6 different types of gymnastics?

Photo by: Amazing Gymnastics Photos Bulgarian gymnast Jordan Jovtchev doing a Maltese strength move on rings

Women's Artistic Gymnastics: This is the most well-known form of gymnastics with the most participants. Tickets to attend women's artistic gymnastics are the first to sell out at each Olympic Games! Women compete for both individual and team titles on four different events: Vault, Uneven Parallel Bars, and Floor Exercise. Women's gymnastics is often considered to be a beautiful combination of power, flexibility, and grace.

Men's Artistic Gymnastics: Men's gymnastics is the 2nd most popular form of gymnastics and also the oldest form dating back to the very early Olympic Games. Men compete both individually and as a team on 6 different events: Floor Exercise, Pommel Horse, Rings, Vault, Parallel Bars, and High Bar. The Vault and Floor apparatus are the same equipment used by the women. Men's gymnastics often has some of the highest flying tricks with amazing displays of strength.

Rhythmic Gymnastics: This is currently a female-only sport in the Olympic Games. Women compete both individually and as a group with 5 different apparatus including Rope, Hoop, Ball, Clubs, and Ribbon. These athletes often display amazing flexibility and grace.

Trampoline: Trampoline is the most recent type of gymnastics to be added and was recognized as an Olympic event beginning at the 2000 games. Both men and women participate in this type of gymnastics. Trampoline routines and tricks are performed using a double mini trampoline and in a synchronized event where 2 athletes perform at the same time on 2 different trampolines. The trampoline is significantly more bouncy than the floor exercise used in artistic gymnastics resulting in gravity defying flips.

Power Tumbling: Power Tumbling is performed on a spring runway much bouncier than the artistic gymnastics' floor. Tumbling passes are performed consisting of a series of 8 elements. This spring runway is also much bouncier than the floor exercise used in artistic gymnastics allowing the athletes to compete complicated and difficult tricks in succession.This has not yet been recognized as an Olympic event, but is competed in the Junior Olympic program in the United States as well as in international competitions.

Acrobatic Gymnastics: In this event the athletes are the equipment. Teams consist of 2-4 people either all men, all women, or mixed. Athletes perform handstands, holds, and balances on each while other members of the team throw and catch their team mates. This is also not yet recognized as an Olympic event, but it is part of the Junior Olympic program in the United States and internationally.

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