The parallettes are devices used in gymnastics specifically to simulate the parallel bars. These are a lot like dip bars but are set lower to the surface. Aside from gymnastics, the device is also used for increasing body strength.
Sizes of the Parallettes
The lengths of parallettes vary. The Beam Store parallettes are 48 inches long and have a 1 ½ inch diameter. The Gibson parallettes are 18 inches long. Other types are 23" long and 8" high. There are also some parallettes that are 24 inches long and 7 inches high.
The parallettes are used in a variety of ways. Exercises used on the parallettes include handstand pushups, handstand presses, V-sits and L-sits.
How to Choose the Right Length
The device must be long enough to ensure the safety of the gymnast. At the very least the parallette must be longer than the shoulder width of the gymnast. Every step on a pirouette has to be a couple of shoulder widths distant. Given this fact, the size of the parallettes should be sufficient to cover this.
Height of the Parallettes
The height of the device must be sufficient for a gymnast to perform L-sits. For an advanced gymnast, the height must be enough for them to do bandstand pushups. When a novice performs the L-sit for the first time, they may not able to keep the legs parallel to the bars.
The height of the parallettes should be sufficient for the gymnasts to keep their feet up. Seasoned gymnasts who want to do bandstand pushups must use bars high enough for the person’s head to get under the bars.
On the average, this has to be about 7 inches from the parallette’s top rail to the floor. This size of the parallettes allows space for both novice and veteran gymnasts.
Size of the Rail
This should be as near the dimensions of the parallel bars as possible. This is particularly crucial for novices because it allows them to get accustomed to the parallel bars. The dimensions of the parallel bar will vary a bit. For many gymnasts, the ideal diameter is 1.5 inches.
This is important especially when they have to be carried. A portable set of parallettes is very important especially when you have to travel with them. Again, the portability varies widely among the different products.
The stability is vital for safety reasons and also for ensuring the right techniques are learned. Make certain the base is long enough to keep the parallettes from tipping. The importance of stability cannot be underestimated.
If the gymnast is uncertain of the stability, they will not be able to practice properly. For this reason, the parallette base length has to be proportional to the parallette’s height. Most of the parallettes sold today are proportionally well designed.
The size of the parallettes needs to be considered seriously. By choosing parallettes with the right dimensions, learning the right moves will be easy. It also ensures you will be safe and in no danger.