Monday, 30 December 2013

TOP 5: BEAM

My Favourite Beam Routines of 2013

As 2013 draws to a close I want to take a look at some of the routines that have stood out for me throughout the year. They may not necessarily be the highest scoring or the the most difficult, but simply ones that I have enjoyed watching. You can find my top 5 Vaults here and my top 5 Bars routines here. And here are my top 5 Beam routines of 2013:

5 - Shang Chunsong
It has been really, really hard to pick just 5 beam routines, but Shang Chunsong has edged out the rest to take my number 5 spot. I think that one of the things that I like the most about this routine is her mount. While most of the girls are choosing to mount the beam simply and safely, Shang Chunsong chooses a forward walkover. It looks different and impressive and sets the tone for the routine right from the start. Add to that some great tumbling and the difficult leaps that the Chinese have become known for and you have a great routine.

Shang Chunsong, Beam, 2013 World Championships

4 - Kyla Ross
Kyla has made my top 5 with the sheer beauty of her movements. Her long lines make her look elegant and graceful throughout, even in her most difficult moves. She links moves together well and her routine as a whole has a fluidity and rhythm to it which many others lack. She is simply a delight to watch on this apparatus.

Kyla Ross, Beam, 2013 Secret US Classic

3 - Aliya Mustafina
What a routine! The connections alone are incredible, but when they are performed with Aliya's trademark style and artistry they are simply superb. Her switch half to Onodi is one of the most beautiful links I think I have ever seen on beam. Aliya really does know how to perform a routine, and when she performs this routine it is easy to see how she became the 2013 Beam World Champion.

Aliya Mustafina, beam, 2013 World Championships

2 - Gabby Jupp
It has to be said that this girl is at home on a beam! As a first year senior Gabby came out with confidence and presence, something that can really be seen when she performs on beam. She shows a great combination of difficulty and artistry in a very fluent routine. In fact her routine is so good that she managed to qualify for the Beam Final at the European Championships, despite suffering a fall which regretfully has taken her out of competition for the rest of the year. I for one cannot wait to see Gabby back competing again. This is a great beam routine from a great gymnast.

Gabby Jupp, Beam, 2013 British Championships

1 - Larisa Iordache
What can I say other than that this is an INCREDIBLE beam routine! It is packed with difficulty from start to finish and is simply mesmerising to watch. Larisa is able to tumble so securely on beam, and I really do mean tumble. Her skills on this apparatus are amazing but not only that, she makes them look effortless. She works through these difficult skills with a rhythm and pace that really does seem to defy the fact that she is performing on an apparatus that is a mere 10cm wide.

Larisa Iordache, Beam, 2013 World Championships

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