Level 2 Gymnastics Skills Guide (USAG)

Dipping your toes into the gymnastics world? You’ve probably heard about the different levels in gymnastics and wondered, what exactly are level 2 gymnastics skills? Well, you’re in the right place!

Let’s get started!

What is Level 2 Gymnastics?

The world of gymnastics is structured in levels, with each stage representing a specific set of skills that a gymnast should master. USAG organizes Women’s Artistic Gymnastics into 10 Development Levels (previously called Junior Olympic levels).

Levels 1 to 3 are optional so some gyms use them to structure their programs whereas others will expect their young gymnasts to compete these requirements at local meets.

If you haven’t mastered the level 1 skills yet, I highly recommend doing so. Gymnastics is all about building blocks and progression to higher levels will become impossible unless you have solid foundations in place.

Level 2 Gymnastics Skills on Floor

Level 2 gymnasts have to perform a floor routine that includes the following skills:

  • Cartwheel
  • Handstand (held for 1 second)
  • Backward roll to Support (push up position)
  • Bridge Kick-over
  • Split leap with 60° leg separation
  • 180° Heel snap turn in passé
  • Split jump with 60° leg separation

The skills found at level 2 are regarded as basic building block-type skills. There are no advanced tumbling skills yet however, girls must show excellent form, especially in the flexibility skills such as Split Leap and Split Jump.

The same point applies to Handstand. A 1-second hold for a Handstand does not sound much but there is a huge and obvious difference between which gymnasts can hold a handstand with excellent form and those who can’t.

Level 2 Beam Routine

A level 2 beam routine must include the following skills:

  • Jump to Front Support Mount
  • Arabesque to 30 degrees
  • Pivot turn
  • Stretch jump
  • Cartwheel to side handstand dismount

The Front Support Mount, Arabesque and Stretch Jump are repeated from level 1. However, the Pivot Turn is now added at level 2. The Cartwheel Dismount must pass fully through Handstand as opposed to the easier 3/4 Handstand found on level.

Level 2 Bars

At level 2 gymnasts have to perform a bar routine with the following skills:

  • Glide Swing
  • Pullover
  • Cast
  • Back hip circle
  • Underswing dismount

Bars require the most strength of all four pieces and is often the event that girls find most difficult. Pullover, Cast and Backhip Circle were also on level 1 but gymnasts now have to add a Glide Swing which is eventually used in Kip.

At level 1 gymnasts had the option of Sole Circle Dismount OR Underswing Dismount but at level 2 girls HAVE to use Underswing Dismount.

Level 2 Vault

Gymnasts at level 2 must perform the following vault:

  • Jump to handstand on mat stack and fall to flat back

The level 2 vault follows straight on from level 1 but gymnasts are now expected to jump into the handstand whereas at level 1 they could step into their handstand flat back.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many hours should a level 2 gymnast train?

At level 2 gymnasts should expect to be training for 3 to 5 hours per week. This will differ from club to club depending on the available time and space in each facility.

What age is level 2 gymnastics?

Most girls will be aged 5 to 8 years old at level 2. The minimum age for a level 2 gymnast to compete at a meet is 5.

How do I move up to level 3?

Level 2 is an optional level for gymnasts to compete so some gymnasts may never compete at this level. However, most clubs will still use Level 2 to structure their own programs and the best way to move up to level 3 is to master all of the Level 2 skills!

Can you skip level 2 in gymnastics?

Level 2 is an introductory level and therefore gymnasts can skip this level. Many gyms will simply use this level to prepare for subsequent competitions through in house events or testing.

How to do a Level 2 floor routine?

For a level 2 floor routine gymnasts are required to perform some of the fundamental skills in gymnasts. These include handstand, cartwheel and backward roll. Whilst these moves are not particularly advanced a gymnast will still need to show that they have mastered them with excellent form and technique