Uncle Dom's Backflip Tutorial

So many people I see can do some cool acrobatics in the air on a trampoline, and I think, Wow! Awesome! But did you know some of those same routines could also be done on the ground? They just need to apply some of the basics to get more height. The routine can go further with more height. 

Here’s an issue I see often: stopping the arms midway. When you do this, that cuts off the height, and the head goes back, which causes the person to go straight backward. They may make it around because of outstanding foot rotation, but imagine what they could do if they had more height?

I have some tips for getting high in the air for a safer landing. Some of these things I’ve been doing since I was a youth, and they help me get pretty good height when I do back tucks. These tips will apply to anything that involves you going into the air because you want to make sure that you do have a lot of height.

Setting - Out of Sight Out of Mind

The term setting is when you jump into the air and get your hands above your head. If you can still see your hands out in front of you when going up for your flip, then you’re not setting properly. 

Your hands should be above your head. When you get your hands above your head, it helps you lift your chest up more. That’s what helps you get into the air. 

Now, when you do throw your arms up, try not to let your head go back. When your head goes back, your body naturally tends to arch, and you’re bent over and cutting off your height, and you’re going backward and down instead of up and over. 

Think of it as more of an up flip than a backflip. Your goal is to go up, flip, then come down. So, when you’re setting, you want to jump up and push.

Push Up and Through Your Toes

When you’re going off of the floor, a lot of people just jump and keep their feet flat. But if you stand on your heels and jump, you won’t get very high, even if you’re flat-footed. So, push up and through your toes as you jump. This compresses your calves and presses them really hard, and it helps with your height.

Going Backward and Over

As you jump up and you set, try to not bring your chest into your knees. Once in the air, you can lean back a bit and then bring your knees into your chest. Set high, lifting the chest, spotting something in the air to make sure you don’t throw your head back. Once in the air, pull your knees in and lean back a bit. That helps with fast rotation once you’re up top.


Again, you want to always ensure that you’re setting nice and high, getting your arms up and your chest up. Focus on not throwing your head back and making sure you get those knees in nice and tight as you lean back once you’re in the air.