How to Do a Mill Circle on Bars

How to Do a Mill Circle on Bars

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Pull yourself up to the bar to do a mill circle.

Paul Gilham/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images

The mill circle, also known as the stride circle, is a basic gymnastics rotation performed on a high bar or the uneven bars. Learning the mill circle helps you progress to more challenging rotational exercises, such as the front hip circle. The mill circle isn't for the raw beginner, but you can learn to perform the exercise with good coaching and diligent practice.


Assume a stride position on the bar with your arms straight and your palms facing forward. Both legs should also be straight, with your lead leg raised and close to parallel with the floor, and your lower leg pointed toward the floor. Your legs should form, or come close to forming, a right angle.


Push upward with your arms and lean your torso forward -- while keeping your back straight -- to begin your rotation. Your lower leg should press forward onto the bar, while the lead leg doesn't touch the bar at this point.


Maintain your body position as your momentum carries you into an upside-down posture. In particular, keep your arms and legs straight and try to maintain the same angle between your legs as you rotate around the bar.


Reduce the angle between your legs when you're fully upside-down by moving each leg toward the other. By the time your torso is parallel with the floor your legs should form about a 45-degree angle.


Shift your wrists toward the end of the circle so you can push your arms down on the bar and lift your torso back to a vertical position.


  • Have a spotter when you first attempt the mill circle to catch you if you fall. Even after you're comfortable performing the exercise, make sure there's a padded mat below the bar when you do mill circles.