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What is Acrobatics vs. Gymnastics?

This is a question we get very often! Gymnastics and acrobatics (or acro for short) share very similar skill sets yet they are very different in how the overall look of the performance is, how they traing and execute the material. 


 Acrobatics is designed as a supplement to dance training and is usually taught in a dance studio with a sprung  floor that is designed for shock absorption beneath a hard surface like wood. Gymnasts work on a spring floor that is designed with actual coils embedded in the mat for optimal rebound and protection during hard-hitting tumbling passes. Another difference is gymnastics and acrobatics is the use of certain pieces of equipment  such as beams or bars to assist in creating challenging and visually stunning routines. In acrobatics there is no use of equipment, the dancers ARE the apparatus. It is very common to "stack" or build platforms out of dancers through partnering to create exciting layers within a performance.


The focus in both acro and gymnastics is strength, balance and flexibility but the difference in execution lies in the transition of movement. A gymnast may run into a round-off back handspring full-twisting back lay-out, while an acro dancer may perform a softer, more lyrical line, such as an illusion swinging into a cartwheel, back handspring to a heel stretch and tilt a la seconde. Two very impressive passes, with two very distinct “looks” and intentions. For many the difference is described as "Gymnastics is a sport and Acrobatics is an art". What do you think?


For dancers, acrobatics is great for adding versatility to your training. Not only will you develop the skills to perform moves like aerials and back handsprings but it will improve your ability to leap and turn in your technique classes as well. MC Dance has a full acrobatics program and is certified through Acrobatic Arts.  

Call the studio today at 936-436-9331to try your first class!

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