Every four years, the Xcel rules change. The new rules came out in late June of 2022, and the materials are available through USA Gymnastics. What’s new in the Xcel program this year? Let’s take a look.

General Changes for the Xcel Program in 2022

All divisions now have Value Part Requirements on Bars, Beam, and Floor.

Here are the Value Part Requirements for each Division:

  • Bronze: 4 “A”
  • Silver: 5 “A”
  • Gold: 6 “A”
  • Platinum: 6 “A”, 1 “B” (no changes)
  • Diamond: 5 “A”, 2 “B” (no changes)

“A” skills are worth 0.10.

“B” skills are worth 0.30.

Missing Value Parts are deducted from the Start Value.

What’s New in Xcel Vault in 2022

what's new in the xcel program vault

There are not a lot of changes to Xcel Vault in 2022.

No major changes have been made to the Vaults for each division.

Bronze, Silver, and Gold Changes for 2022-26

Bronze Vault

Vault 1B – removed deduction for “Failure to use levering action into the handstand”

Silver Vault

No changes to Silver Vault.

Gold Vault

No changes to Gold Vault.

Platinum Vault Changes for 2022-26

There are two new vault options for Platinum:

  • Yurchenko entry, repulsion off – 9.7 Start Value
  • Yurchenko entry, repulsion with 1/2 twist off – 9.7 Start Value

Some of the Platinum vaults have changed their values since the last cycle.

Platinum Start Value Changes:

  • Handspring – 9.7 (was 9.8)
  • Handspring 1/2 off – 9.9 (was 10.0)
  • Yamashita – 9.7 (was 9.8)
  • 1/2-1/2 – 9.9 (was 10.0)
  • 1/2 on, repulsion off – 9.7 (was 9.8)
  • 1/4-1/4 (land facing away from table) – 9.7 (was 9.8)

Diamond Vault Changes for 2022-26

There are also new vault options for Diamond:

  • Yurchenko entry, repulsion off – 9.4 Start Value
  • Yurchenko entry, repulsion with 1/2 twist off – 9.6 Start Value

Vault Deductions

There are no changes to the deductions in any Division for vault.

What’s New in Xcel Bars in 2022

gymnast with mental block on bars
Young gymnast on a horizontal bar

Bars is the event that has the most changes with the new Code of Points.

Changes have been made to Special Requirements, Value Parts, angle requirements, and more!

Special Requirement Changes in 2022

Special Requirements’ values have not changed in this Code of Points.

Each Special Requirement is worth 0.50. If one is missing, this deduction is taken from the Start Value.

Since each division now has Value Part requirements with specific values, there is no longer a Special Requirement stating how many skills should be in the routine. This is great news, because if the gymnast is relying on using a cast as one of her skills, and the cast doesn’t get credit, now she will only lose 0.10 from the Start Value, instead of a 0.50 Special Requirement!

Bronze Special Requirements

The Special Requirements for Bronze are:

  1. Mount (from low bar only)
  2. Cast (hips must leave the bar) – not in mount or dismount
  3. 360° circling skill – not in mount or dismount
  4. Dismount (from low bar only, no saltos)

Silver Special Requirements

The Special Requirements for Silver are:

  1. Mount
  2. Cast to at least 45° below horizontal – not in mount or dismount
  3. 360° circling skill – not in mount or dismount
  4. Dismount (from low bar or high bar, no saltos)

Gold Special Requirements

The Special Requirements for Gold are:

  1. Skill finishing in a clear support at a minimum of horizontal – not in mount or dismount
  2. 360° circling skill – not in mount or dismount
  3. 2nd 360° circling skill (same as or different from the 1st one) – not in mount or dismount
  4. Dismount (from high bar)

Platinum Special Requirements

There are no changes to the Platinum Special Requirements this year.

As a review, the Special Requirements for Platinum are:

  1. Skill finishing in a clear support above horizontal – not in mount or dismount
  2. 360° circling skill – not in mount or dismount
  3. Kip
  4. Dismount (from high bar)

Diamond Special Requirements

The Special Requirements for Diamond are:

  1. Skill finishing in a clear support at a minimum of 45° from vertical – not in mount or dismount
  2. Minimum “B” 360° circling skill
  3. Additional skill, min. “B”: a release, turn, or 2nd 360° circling skill (same as or different from the 1st one)
  4. Salto or hecht dismount (from high bar) OR any “B” or higher dismount from the high bar

NEW Requirements for Casting Angles

Casts/skills finishing in clear support: now only need to be within 10° of the angle requirement to receive Value Part or Special Requirement credit. If the skill finishes within 10° of the requirement, it will receive credit, but there will be a 0.10 amplitude deduction.

If a cast does not reach within 10° of the required cast angle, resulting in a missing Value Part, the gymnast will still lose the Special Requirement for the cast or skill to the required angle. However, a certain number of “A” skills is no longer a 0.50 Special Requirement, so she will only lose an additional 0.10 for each missing “A”.

New Bars Elements in 2022

Basket swing = A (all divisions)

Mount: Jump squat on = A (Silver, Gold, Platinum, and Diamond)

Dismount: 3/4 Back Seat Circle – added stretched variation = A (Silver only)

Forward leg swing = A (Bronze and Silver only)

Clarification on Bars Mounts

Only two-part mounts are allowed. If a 3rd mounting skill is performed, it will NOT receive Value Part credit, and it WILL receive execution deductions.

  • Example: Glide swing, glide swing, pullover = 2 Value Parts
  • If two glide swings are performed without a foot touch between the glides, it will only count as 1 element.

Matting Clarification

Some gymnasts have been stacking mats to mount the bars, affectionately called “Build a Mountain”. The gymnast is allowed to “build a mountain” on the low bar only (at Bronze, Silver, and Gold divisions). Gymnasts can stack mats to mount on the low bar, but not on the high bar.

Unallowable matting will receive a 0.30 deduction from the average score.

What’s new in Xcel Beam in 2022

Xcel Gold beam walkover

Xcel Beam Special Requirements

There are no major changes to the Special Requirements in this Code of Points.

The only change is a clarification on acro series for Platinum and Diamond.

To get credit for a Platinum or Diamond acro series – One element must achieve or pass through vertical.

New Rule for Awarding Handstand Credit

A 10° variance from vertical is allowed on handstands. If a gymnast is within 10° of vertical, credit will be awarded for a vertical handstand.

If the gymnast is within 10° of vertical, she will receive Value Part credit, with a 0.10 amplitude deduction.

Beam Clarifications

Cross handstands and side handstands are considered different elements for all Divisions.

A hold is not required for “A” handstand elements.

“B” and more difficult handstands that require a hold (look in the Xcel Code of Points) follow that requirement.

Examples of these handstands that do require a hold to retain their value:

  • Handstand with large arch span in cross or side position, also piked with one leg vertical (B)
  • Handstand with reverse planche (C)
  • Back walkover in cross position to one-arm handstand (C)
  • Side handstand, release one hand with sideward swing down to side sit, back lying, or other position (C)
  • Back walkover in side position to one-arm handstand, also with one arm planche (D)

New skill = “Whipple” (C valued mount). The Whipple is a split jump with leg change, mounting at the end of the beam (similar to a Sweetin switch-split jump on the beam).

What’s New in Xcel Floor in 2022

what's new in the xcel program on floor

Difficulty Restrictions

Gold gymnasts may now do “B” non-twisting saltos. They may NOT perform “B” valued saltos with a twist.

Examples of “B” non-twisting saltos:

  • Front pike
  • Front layout

New deductions

  • Failure to show synchronization with music with ending pose – 0.10
  • Failure to hold ending pose – 0.05

New skills

Backward roll to pushup shape is a new skill for all divisions.

  • Arms can be straight or bent on this roll (and all rolls).
  • Ending position is optional for this roll (and all rolls).

Sapphire Pilot Program

The Sapphire Division is a new pilot program in selected regions. It is only available in Regions 3, 6, 7, and 8. The rules for the Sapphire Division are not included in the Xcel Code of Points, but they are available online. Please see the following article for more details:

Xcel Sapphire Division Rules

Further Reading

Xcel Home Page

What’s New in the Developmental Program in 2022?

Gymnastics Routine Critiques

References

USA Gymnastics Xcel Code of Points, 2022-26.

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