Q:

How do you build a gymnastics balance beam?

A:

Quick Answer

To build a gymnastics balance beam, glue together six 8-ft. long 1x6 pine boards to create an 8-ft. by 4-in. by 5-in. board. Suspend the board using stands made out of 2x4 boards such that the top of the balance beam is about 18 inches off the ground.

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Full Answer

The balance beam is an apparatus used by gymnasts to perform various acrobatic tricks while balancing on a thin beam. Use the following steps to build a practice balance beam that is low to the ground for safety.

  1. Glue together boards to make the beam
  2. Use strong wood adhesive to glue together six different boards whose dimensions are 8 ft. by 1 in. by 6 in. to get an 8 ft. by 4-in. by 5-in. solid beam. The last board will need to be stripped down to allow the whole beam to be 4 in. across.

  3. Sand away the excess glue and sharp corners
  4. Sand down the beam so that it is even and comfortable to stand on.

  5. Create braces and mount the beam
  6. Use 2x4 boards arranged in an upside down V to hold the beam up so that the top of the beam is about 18 inches off the ground. Glue and screw the braces and beam together, then add more braces that go away from the supports towards the center of the beam on either side to stop the beam from bending.

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