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This maneuver is routinely carried out by masters of following sports: BMX biking, skydiving, skiing, snowboarding, trampolining, gymnastics, ice-skating, diving, and by ninjas.

This trick amazes onlookers because the practitioner defies common sense by letting his or her body rotate before placing his feet on the land once again.

Often, the jump leading up to a flip throws the body in such a way as to make a flip neccessary. While popping off a spine on a snowboard, a denied rotation of the rider can lead to a headfirst dive into the hardpack and a cracked or severed spine. A master of one of the sports mentioned possesses the skill to go with the flow of his reutine to the extent that a flip is an easy ammendment to any pattern of motion.

Along with the ability to be inspired by the dread of failure and to later laugh at the fear you once felt all a master needs to flip is a confident look upwards. Like a horse responding to the pull of reigns, the human body goes where you look, and if you're falling over a jump, looking up brings on the desired backflip.

If you let yourself crumple up midway, your jaw and tummy may meet the landing instead of your feet. This is why novices should avoid backflips from anything but a diving board.

How to do a backflip

First of all I will say that not everyone can do a backflip, and if you try this, it's at your own risk.

It takes some flexibility, strength and you can't be too out of shape.

What it is:
You basically jump in the air, flip over backwards and then land on your feet.

Getting Started:

Location: First you want a place to learn it. I suggest over some matts or a nice grassy place that won't hurt too bad if you screw up.

Spotter: You need a spotter, 2 is better, to help you with learning this trick. There's a couple ways they can help you.
1. You can wear a nice long belt and wear it loosely. They'll hold onto it as you flip so they can either hold you up if you mess up or slow your fall enough so you don't hurt.

2. You can put a hand on each of their shoulders as they stand at your sides and you push off as you jump to help you get over and gain a feel for the trick.

Execution: Get in an athletic stance to start, feet shoulder width apart with your hips back, knees bent and back in a neutral position(flat).

You will want to jump straight up, not back. Then tucking your knees towards your chest at the highest point in your jump, throw your head back and swinging your arms up and grab your knees. You're tucking into a ball and the angular momentum will rotate you in the air. Unfolding too early will result in a crash. Try to unfold as your legs when you start facing the ground.

One of the most dangerous parts of this move is the fear. You can practice this on a trampoline first to help with the fear but DO NOT try this at a pool. That's just stupid because there's a great risk of just coming back down onto where you jumped from unless you jump straight back which isn't what you do with a backflip on land in which case it would not help you. The fear can make you crash, so be confident.

Make sure to run through it in your head a few times first, and have a spotter.

Good luck.

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