More Japanese men’s videos…PB and HB!

We already took a look at some of the incredible tumbling passes of the Japanese men…now let’s check out some of their best high bar and parallel bar routines. These are definitely two of the events that show off some of the best qualities of the Japanese men. In this past decade, high bar has really become one of the defining events for this team. Their incredible team finals performance on high bar that clinched the Olympic gold for them in 2004 will go down as one of the best team high bar performances ever. They’re continuing to separate themselves from the rest of the world on this event…and still quite far ahead of China on this event, I might add.

Koji Uematsu HB 2009 Japanese Nationals

Hisashi Mizutori HB 2009 Japanese Nationals

I absolutely love his extension, beautiful lines, and super-straight arms…even after release moves like the Yamawaki. Many gymnasts struggle on the giant out of that release because it’s hard to generate a lot of swing out of it, but he makes it look great. My one criticism is how early he goes into that jam at the beginning…most gymnasts are dropping from the handstand into their jams, or at least from nearly a handstand. I think coming in this early should be a deduction. Awesome overall though!

Yosuki Hoshi HB 2009 Japanese Nationals

Kohei Uchimura HB 2009 Japanese Nationals

Just went we were starting to think he might be immortal! Despite the falls (not sure why he felt the need to repeat the Kolmann), this routine is absolutely phenomenal. I think he probably has my favorite Kovacses in the world…NO ONE catapults them up in the air and extends out of them quite like he does. Notice he does the same thing on his dismount…I’d say that’s probably the best double-double in the world because of the tight straight body he opens out into after the second twist.

Here’s a look at his gold-medal P-Bar routine:

Kohei Uchimura PB 2009 Japanese Nationals

What incredible variety. He showed FIVE different release elements, but all were from different entries. He showed one from upper arms, two from a giant, one from a backward support swing, and one from a forward support swing…not to mention the unique giant to “Gienger” that we almost never see. Add to that some great peach work, a Tippelt, and a perfect double pike, and that has to be one of the most well-rounded routines in the world.

Here’s a look at the gymnast who placed 2nd on this event:

Hiroyuki Imai PB 2009 Japanese Nationals

I have a feeling we’re going to see some amazing duels between China and Japan over the next three years. I think these are unquestionably the top two teams in the world, and with Kohei’s leadership and world class routines like these, China’s dominance may be coming to an end.