How to do a Cartwheel

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How to do a cartwheel


Are you interested in learning how to do a cartwheel?

But you aren’t sure where to start?




Start With A Baby Cartwheel

You can learn a cartwheel in one day, but you will first need to start with a baby cartwheel and then work on perfecting it. In the cartwheel below the gymnast kicks around the side and does a baby cartwheel. Whereas, in the cartwheel above she correctly kicks vertically over her head. As you practice you will get better and better, and be able to do a correct cartwheel.

How_to_Do_a_baby Cartwheel


One of the keys to learning a perfect cartwheel is practice. In our article on the power of repetition, we share a personal example about learning how to do a cartwheel.  In order to learn the same way as in our story, complete this 1,000 cartwheel challenge. You can download it below. Remember, practice makes perfect!


how to do a cartwheel


Now, let’s get into it…

Note: If you aren’t sure if your gymnast should be trying a cartwheel with their right leg going first or their left, there are a couple things you can do. You can have your gymnast do a cartwheel on both sides and see which side is easier and more natural. You can also have your gymnast do a cartwheel over a mat or a block (like here below) and see which way their hands turn. If they naturally turn 90 degrees to the left, they are most likely going to be doing a left cartwheel. And if they turn 90 degrees to the right, they are most likely going to be doing a right cartwheel.

How to Do a Cartwheel Step by Step

Here are step by step instructions for learning a cartwheel.

 1. Start in a lunge.

To start your lunge, put your dominant leg in front and bend it slightly. Your back leg should be straight. Your arms should be straight above your head, near your ears.
How to do a cartwheel step by step

2. Put your hands on the ground.

Put your hands on the ground with your hands turned 90 degrees.

How to do a cartwheel step-by-step
3. Kick your feet over your head.

Kick your feet over your head one at a time. The foot that kicks first should land first.

How to do a cartwheel step-by-step

4. Land in a lunge.
Land in a lunge facing the opposite direction you started from. Your arms should be over your head near your ears. Your front leg should be slightly bent, and your back leg should be straight.

How to do a cartwheel step-by-step

When you are starting out, just try to kick your feet around the side of your body. Then, as you work on improving your cartwheel, you can try to kick your feet more over your head.

While you can learn a cartwheel without the help of tools, it can be easier to learn one with help. Especially for young gymnasts.

How to Do a Cartwheel Video


cartwheel learning tools

Tools for Learning a Cartwheel

The Original Block: Cartwheel over the Cartwheel Block

My favorite way to teach a cartwheel is to teach it over an object. And this cartwheel block is perfect for learning this way. It’s much easier to kick your feet around or over your head in this method, with your hands being raised a little bit off the ground.

To do a cartwheel over the block:

  1. Start in a lunge.
  2. Turn your hands 90 degrees to either the right or left (depending on your gymnast’s dominant side).
  3. And kick your feet over the block to land on the other side.

You can also help determine which side, right or left, will be your gymnast’s dominant side when they are tumbling with this tool. If your gymnast automatically turns her hands 90 degrees to the left, she should probably do a left cartwheel with her left foot in front in her lunge. If she automatically turns her hands 90 degrees to the right, she will probably be doing a right cartwheel.


Improve your beam


Tumbl Trak Cartwheel Beam Mat: Cartwheel on the Cartwheel Mat

Learning a cartwheel with a cartwheel mat is a great method for preschool children. The foot-prints and hand-prints make it easy for preschool age children to figure out where their hands should go. You can also use the back of this mat to practice doing a cartwheel in a straight line.

Nastia Liukin Pink Foam Balance Beam: Cartwheel on a Foam Training Beam

Once your gymnast has learned a cartwheel, it’s time to make it perfect! One of the ways to make sure your gymnast is doing a straight cartwheel is by doing it on a beam. This foam balance beam is slightly raised, but not enough that your gymnast will hurt herself if she doesn’t land directly on it.

Sticky Beam Strip: Cartwheel on a Line on the Floor:

A sticky beam strip is a great way to help your gymnast practice on a line, when you don’t want to put chalk or tape on the floors in your house. You can put this strip down, use it to practice, and take it right back up. By practicing your cartwheel on a line, you will make sure you are going right over your head.

I hope this helps you master your cartwheel!

Once you have mastered your cartwheel, check out 9 other basic gymnastics skills you should master.


Do you want to learn how to do a cartwheel? Check out this cartwheel hands download.


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91 comments… add one
  • Precious June 17, 2017, 10:05 pm

    • ... October 21, 2017, 9:55 pm


      • bisma bilal January 14, 2019, 5:46 pm

        i am too scared to kick my legs in the air!afraid i will fall

        • Jojomcpojo April 1, 2019, 7:11 pm

          Me too I hate kicking my legs up

          • Rebecca July 11, 2020, 11:33 am

            What I have trouble with us putting my legs in the air staight!

          • Mira Collins November 17, 2020, 11:40 am

            Nothing will happen unless you do it by force. Just try and you just might learn (:

        • keiarra November 5, 2019, 3:52 pm

          i was afraid too but if you just do it then you won’t be scared

          • I'd rather not say my name. August 30, 2020, 9:35 pm

            Be more confident. Just go for it, but don’t throw yourself at it thinking of it as “confidence”. That’s just stupidity. Also, I’m coming from experience so I understand.

        • Ananumis December 11, 2019, 8:45 pm

          Same i’m 12 AND in CHEER CHEER ugh!

        • I'd rather not say my name. September 23, 2020, 11:10 pm

          You can start practicing cartwheels in areas where falling will not hurt as much (DO NOT practice in bumpy areas where there are slopes because trust me, I know from experience that YOU WILL GET HURT).

    • Heaven September 28, 2020, 1:08 pm

      Me I don’t have enough strength in will keep trying tho

    • Janebruh October 13, 2021, 6:14 am


  • Precious June 17, 2017, 10:12 pm


  • Mary Harris June 20, 2017, 2:01 pm

    I didn’t do it perfect

    • Nora February 24, 2018, 10:32 am

      Neither did I.

    • Amanda June 25, 2020, 6:12 am

      I don’t either.

  • Alexandra June 22, 2017, 3:53 pm

    I sprained my arm doing that and probably pulled a muscle

    • Kate July 6, 2017, 12:15 am


    • Kate July 6, 2017, 12:16 am

      Hey how are you

      • BTS IS VERY NICE December 7, 2018, 7:20 pm

        I’m splended

    • Akon July 12, 2017, 10:42 pm

      When you do any type of gymnastic move, you must stretch your muscles. That’s probably where you went wrong.

      • zhyan December 21, 2019, 1:10 am

        your 100% correct

    • Hebe September 28, 2020, 1:09 pm

      Oo my

  • me June 23, 2017, 6:39 am

    when I do a cartwheel, I’m sure my legs aren’t quite straight up and down, I’m sure that I’m wonky while doing it, how do I go ‘straight up and down?? Please!! :):)

    • Nora February 24, 2018, 10:34 am

      I need to know that as well.

      • Emma July 24, 2019, 5:03 pm

        Pretend you are a T with your body and legs staright

    • Nora March 21, 2018, 9:52 am

      Did you remember to point your toes?

  • Rim June 24, 2017, 12:03 pm

    Insta d of landing in a lunge I always land like a rou d off

    • Nora March 21, 2018, 9:54 am

      Try doing the splits in the middle of the cartwheel and landing one foot at a time.

  • Horsey133 July 22, 2017, 6:45 am

    My legs are bent when i do it how do i get them straight . Other than that its great!

  • Thel September 11, 2017, 5:48 pm

    I am not flexible I did not do it I couldn’t stretch my leg

    • Valerie March 31, 2021, 11:33 pm

      Me too! But at least I tried !

  • Breanna October 11, 2017, 5:54 pm

    Thanks for your help!!!.

  • WeirdGymnast January 14, 2018, 7:35 am

    Can you use a mattress while perfecting?

  • Adriene March 8, 2018, 4:03 pm

    How do I make my legs strait?

  • Adriene March 10, 2018, 10:04 pm

    What do you do when your legs aren’t strait?

    • Nora March 17, 2018, 2:18 pm

      Point your toes!

  • Los March 16, 2018, 12:35 am

    This site is very helpful. I was trying to learn how to do a cartwheel because we are doing a freestyle tinikling routine in my gym class and I was trying to self tech because I learned when I was about 4 or so, but forgot. But, easily once I followed the steps, it all just come back to me and if I practice over the weekend then I’ll be good by Monday!
    Thank You!

    • Rayne July 30, 2020, 2:24 pm

      How did it go?

  • Nora March 21, 2018, 9:56 am

    Thank you! This website was incredibly helpful in teaching me how to do a lunge cartwheel.

  • Sarah May 15, 2018, 7:34 pm

    How do you do the cartwheel if it is on carpet instead of grass?

    • Nora T. February 17, 2021, 2:51 pm

      It is the same.

  • dereon May 29, 2018, 12:48 pm

    dplble musically follow me dereon5000

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  • sarah September 29, 2018, 3:27 pm

    Wow. Thank you so much ! i have wanted to learn a cartwheel for soooo long and now i can do one

  • Leila October 15, 2018, 9:00 pm

    Hi I am in 6th grade and have now just starting cheer for the first time. Any Tips? Also, I can’t do the splits or any kind of leg flexibility movement will I get better over time? Please respond!

    • Claire October 23, 2018, 9:44 pm

      If you want to do the splits, all you need to do is stretch every day. If you search online, there’s lots of stretching exercises for splits. Sprinting also helps because you move your legs really wide. I did the kneeling quad stretch and I sprinted 2/3 times a week for 30 minutes and it took me 3 months to do the splits.

  • Megan January 24, 2019, 6:59 pm

    i just cant get my legs in to the handstand part it is impossible for me so can i please get some tips

    • Tate December 7, 2019, 12:54 pm

      I an do a cartwheel except not the handstand part. Anyone who has tips please respond.

    • Tate December 7, 2019, 12:55 pm

      I an do a cartwheel except not the handstand part. Anyone who has tips please respond. Also can I sill do cheer even if I can’t do splits?

  • Denise Fulton July 13, 2019, 6:41 pm

    This way of how to do a cartwheel is dumps I live in az

  • Emma July 24, 2019, 5:04 pm

    I already know how do do one ask me for any questions

    • Grace February 20, 2021, 1:28 pm

      any tips for getting your legs straight and not bending them?

  • Emma September 20, 2019, 8:40 am

    I tried it at home but boom, i hit my head on the ground and my legs hurt so badly

  • Gymnast October 22, 2019, 9:23 am

    i struggle with getting my cartwheel to go straight 🙁

  • Alyssa oleary November 8, 2019, 2:09 pm

    Hi my name is Alyssa I know how to do a cartwheel but when I go into a lunge I keep crunching my body how do I get my legs to go further forward above head

  • Kianah November 13, 2019, 7:31 pm

    Hi my name is Kianah and I didn’t know how to do a cartwheel before now I do because of this app. THANK YOU

  • Angela Batson November 20, 2019, 7:51 pm

    i love this but i am trying to impress a boy and i can not do a cartwheel

    • Sofia February 9, 2020, 12:47 pm

      oh no! Um…you such just…er…well…just keep practising?

    • Sadie June 24, 2020, 8:22 pm

      Just be yourself if he doesn’t like u then he don’t deserve you girlfriend

  • Lynn Crystal December 17, 2019, 10:15 pm

    Oh my gosh! in one go, I could do it!

  • Courtney December 29, 2019, 8:07 pm

    Thank you! I have been practicing for awhile now and haven’t accomplished it yet because I get keep my legs straight when I’m about to land I always tuck my legs in and it hurts! Have any tips? If you do please respond back! And also if you have any stretching tips please tell me some good ones! Thanks!!

    • Sofia February 9, 2020, 12:45 pm

      Hello Courtney! I just found your comment so I decided to help you. I used to be very good at doing a cartwheel but after awhile I stoped practicing and now I can’t do it anymore. It’s really annoying! My tip for you is to point your feet. You will be so much better if you point your feet. I hope you will have a nice day! 🙂

  • I'm trash April 6, 2020, 2:27 pm

    Hello I’m trash I’ve been practoceing a cartwile for over 2or 3 years now and still can’t do it I’ve tyres so many way an this one is diffrent and I still land on my bum with my legs twisted can’t do handstand I can. Do front flip splits bridge and lay on my stomarch and pull my legs over my sholders but the easyest ones handstand and cartwhile terms out to be the hardest when I do hand stand I flip over land on my neck or back I want to join gymnastics club but they sayed I’m not good enough I will jut end up hurting myself and cause ing a acudent I can’t even do a hand stand on a wall 🙁 please I need help I’ve tried everything please make my dreams come true bye xxxx :c

    • Sophie April 22, 2020, 11:28 am

      hi, i’m sure if u look online, u’ll find something, this website has a page on how to do a handstand, just type it into the search bar, you can also go to and (gymnasticshq and have both really helped me to get my handstand and cartwheel)
      hope this helps

  • Sadie June 24, 2020, 8:19 pm

    I’m 11 and could not do it but hey at least I landed safely with a pulled muscle or 2 lol

  • @charliscookiesncreame September 15, 2020, 12:36 pm

    umm i need help

  • Desire September 16, 2020, 7:27 am

    I didn’t get it but I amolst broke my sister knee and her phone lol.

  • Gisselle De La o October 11, 2020, 1:11 pm

    Hello im gisselle and will like to learn gymnastics

  • Gisselle De La o October 11, 2020, 1:20 pm

    yayyyyyyyyyy i did it but i hit my dog in the face jajajaja fell bad

  • Gisselle De La o October 11, 2020, 1:23 pm

    lol ya are so intelegent for do this lol

  • sally October 15, 2020, 2:50 pm

    cartwheels are so hard

  • I rather not say my name October 31, 2020, 8:13 pm

    How do I keep my leg straight I tried many times but it doesn’t work

    • Hello November 1, 2020, 12:15 pm

      You should try point your toes

  • I rather not say my name November 1, 2020, 12:12 pm

    I was trying to do the cartwheel yesterday and now my arm and part of my body hurts do you know why?

    • Valerie March 31, 2021, 11:30 pm

      I have the same problem too! I tried doing a cartwheel yesterday and for some random reason both of arm can’t hold something heavy nor move so wild! I don’t know about you but I am really NOT flexible, so maybe that’s the problem or we did something wrong?

  • Mira Collins November 17, 2020, 11:39 am

    So, I’m 14 and I’m a gymnast and still don’t know how to do a cartwheel. But once I saw this, I got the hang of it!

    • cool November 17, 2020, 5:42 pm


  • idk November 25, 2020, 6:54 am

    it’s not as easy as it seems, i’ve tried to do cartwheels for many times and always ended up failing 🙁

  • Practice makes perfect January 12, 2021, 11:36 am

    This is very nice of you to teach me I practice it every day I never gave up until I got it thank you

    • OMG February 11, 2021, 9:22 am


  • Joy February 11, 2021, 9:10 am

    i”m just too scared i can only do a handstand

    • Adrianna Keener November 7, 2021, 9:35 pm

      One way to help do it on the wall first then after you think you got that down try it on your own. Never be to scared to do something it will just make you worse.

  • Valerie March 31, 2021, 11:26 pm

    I still can’t do a cartwheel maybe because I’m really not flexible, I almost sprained 2 of my arms because doing a cartwheel!

    • Sana April 3, 2021, 4:32 pm

      I sprained BOTH of my ankles and wrists. and knee.

  • Sana April 3, 2021, 4:30 pm

    I am not doing it even with the steps!!!! I literally cried today because I did not do it!!

  • Lily April 15, 2021, 12:51 am

    Thank you

  • Vicky May 4, 2021, 5:33 pm


  • juan villanueva martinez September 15, 2021, 12:44 pm

    i was kicking up my legs and i did kinda like the cartwheel i think its called the roundoff.

  • Adrianna Keener November 7, 2021, 9:33 pm

    It is helping me with my cartwheel I started with me just trying to do a handstand then I tried my cartwheel. One way to help is to do this concept “Hand hand-foot foot.”


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