As the element gets more difficult, the gymnast will begin the vault with a roundoff – back handspring onto the vault and then into the air to perform the saltos and twists.
The gymnasts must have perfect timing in order to spring off the springboard backward and then land on the vault hands first (roundoff half on) and then into their twists and saltos.
It is really quite remarkable how these athletes perform these incredibly difficult tricks and make them look easy!
Love vault & want to see even more difficult moves? Watch this video which shows vaults that have a difficulty rating between 3.8 and 6.5 by world class female gymnasts.
The vault is also known as the "horse" which is similar to a pommel horse but doesn't have any handles to hold on to. The vault routine involves a gymnast running down the run and then jump onto a springboard and spring onto the vault resulting in a flight and various twists, turns and aerial moves.
In a gymnastics competition, judges look at everything from technique to how the landing was executed.