Published on January 1st, 2012 | by AC Magazine
Step by Step: Mastering the Liberty Grip
Here are three variations on how to hold a Liberty. In all three variations, the right base (from the top’s point of view) has her hands under the top’s toe and heel. In this article, we’re focusing on the left base’s hand position with her left hand. In all three variations, her right hand is under the middle of the top’s foot.
A Liberty is legal for schools and USASF Levels 3 and up.
1. HAMBURGER GRIP (LOAD POSITION
In the Hamburger grip, the left base places her left hand on top of the top girl’s right foot, like she’s making two hamburger buns with her hands. This grip keeps the top’s foot from moving while she’s in the air.
For all purposes, the left hand in no way helps throw the stunt up in the air.
2. HAMBURGER GRIP (EXTENDED POSITION)]
When extended, the left base keeps her left hand on top of the top girl’s foot to keep it from rotating. To keep the top’s foot from moving around have the top girl spread her toes apart and then touch them to the top of her shoe. This flexes the muscles in the foot and makes it less likely to move.
3. WRIST GRIP (LOAD POSITION)]
In the wrist grip, the left base starts with her left hand gripping the right wrist of the other base.
4. WRIST GRIP (EXTENDED POSITION)]
When extended, the left base keeps her hand on the right base’s right wrist. If the right base’s right hand releases the top girl’s foot at any point, then the left base’s left hand will also come off the foot.
5. LEG THROW (LOAD POSITION)
In this variation, the left base starts with her left hand on the top girl’s shin. There’s a slight angle in the top’s leg, which provides an opportunity for the base to get a stronger throw. As the group throws the top girl into the stunt, the left base gives her shin a boost upwards. Of all three grips, this one will provide a stronger throw up into the stunt.
6. COLLEGIATE GRIP
At the top of the throw, the left base releases the shin, steps directly under the stunt and places her left hand under the top’s foot (between her right hand and the right base’s right hand).
Usually, the left base will only be able to get her thumb under the foot, but if the right base’s right hand starts to slide out and off the foot, then the left base can fit her whole hand under the foot. This is the same grip that college athletes use in coed stunts.
by Craig Callaway
photos by Jeff Dickerson