Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Stunt Register - Strength and Agility Qualification

The following post contains the information required to pass the Strength and Agility portion of the Equity stunt register qualification. It also contains the specific differences between the male and female gymnastics qualification and the climbing requirements.

Stunt Register Gymnastics Qualification

General Requirements for both male and female gymnasts.

The coach/examiner should B.A.G.A. 3 standard and not the applicants normal coach. All elements should be attempted for assessment .
It is a requirement that the gymnast attain all skills to a competant level, with an overall pass level of 70% and no individual section below 60%.


0 - 4 Graded failure to complete movement
5 - 6 Completed move but with insufficient style or technique
7 - 8 A competent performance of the movement with reasonable style
9 - 10 Excellent to flawless performance

Male Stunt Register Gymnastics Qualification

1. Handstand forward roll
2. Back roll through handstand
3. Two cartwheels
4. Round off (Arab Spring)
5. Standing back flip
6. Round off back flip
7. Handspring
8. Front somersault from reuther board

Pommel Horse
1. Half shear off left leg
2. Half shear off right leg
3. Five double leg circles on a mushroom pommel trainer 

1. Five swings to horizontal back and front
2. From inverted hang layaway and inlace
3. Dislocate from swing
4. Swing and back flyaway dismount
5. Muscle up and hold half lever

Cross Horse: Height 130cms
1. Layout squat through
2. Handspring

Long Horse 
Height 130cms
1. Straddle vault

Parallel Bars
1. Swing to handstand and hold three seconds
2. Back uprise from upper arms
3. Upper arm upstart
4. Short upstart on end of bars
5. Flank vault dismount

Horizontal Bars
Low Bar
1. Backward circle
2. Forward hip circle
3. Float upstart
4. Straddle sold circle dismount

High Bar
1. Backward long swings using gloves and loops
2. Forward long swing using gloves and loops
3. One or the other of 1 or 2 without loops
4. Swing and back flyaway dismount

1. Tuck jumo
2. Straddle jump
3. Dive roll
4. Front somersault tucked
5. Straight somersault
6. Running tucked front somersault 
7. Running straight from somersault
8. Standing back somersault tucked

1. 4m rope climb without use of legs

Female Stunt Register Gymnastics Qualification

Safety mats should be allowed under the beam and the single high bar elements can be performed over the pit. Each element is marked out of 10 in half mark intervals (i.e. 7.5 is allowable 7.3 is not). Candidates will be allowed a maximum of two attempts at each skill, the best mark to count.

Height 125cms 
1. Hadnspring
2. One of: Half on, half off,
                 Tsukahara tucked

Horizontal Bars
Low Bar
1. Upstart
2. Clear circle to min. horizontal

Shiny bar with loops and gloves
1. 3 x forward giants
2. 3 x backward giants

Single High Bar
1. 3 x back giants from cast
2. Tucked somersault dismount from swing under bar

Height 120cms
1. Mount from springboard onto one leg
2. Tuck jump
3. Either
    Backward walkover
    Free forward roll
4. Cartwheel to handstand hold 2 seconds
5. Full spin on one leg
6. Cartwheel tuck back somersault dismount 
    Free cartwheel dismount

1 Handstand forward toll
2. Back roll to handstnad
3. Two cartwheels
4. Handspring to one leg, handspring to two legs
5. Dive roll (Hecht, layout position)
6. Round-off two flics
7. Round-off tuck back somersault or:
    Round-off flip, tuck back somersault
8. Tucked front somersault from springboard
9. Standing tuck back
10. Running punch front

Mini-tramp (minimum 12" safety mat for landing)
1. Pike straddle jump
2. Piked front somersault
3. Piked or straight barani
4. Tucked somersault
5. Straight somersault
6. Running tucked front somersault
7. Running straight front somersault
8. Standing back somersault tucked

Rock Climbing Stunt Register Qualification


(British Mountaineering Club) S.P.A (Single Pitch Award) combined with an ability to lead climbs confidently at a H.V.S. (Hard Very Severe) standard.



(Mountain Instructor Award)



(Mountain Instructor Certificate)

Monday, 3 August 2015

Stunt Register - Riding and Driving

The next group of qualifications comprises of three possible choices.

The first Horses, the second Cars and the third Motorcycles.

Stunt Register Horse Riding Qualification

The examiner shall be a qualified BHS examiner approved by British Actors’ Equity. The examiner may not examine any candidate that he/she has trained for the Test. British Actors’ Equity will approve the examiner and venue for the Test. The candidate must pay the Test fee to Equity prior to the Test, no later than the deadline date specified in the letter of confirmation. The fee will be set to cover the examiner’s fees and expenses, use of the riding centre facilities and horses, administration costs, fee/expenses for the Horsemaster present and training for new Horsemasters and examiners. 
The cost of the test will be around £300 and there has to be a minimum of 3 participants otherwise the test cannot take place.

Candidates cancelling will not get a refund unless unable to attend due to illness/injury. In this instance they must provide a valid medical certificate within two weeks of notification. They will then be reimbursed three quarters of the fee. The other quarter is administration costs. If no medical or hospital certificate is received then the entire fee will be forfeit. 
1. The candidate will be required to tack up a horse efficiently with an understanding of the safety and comfort of the tack for horse and rider. Bits may include snaffles and pelhams where a curb chain is included. The candidate will be required to lead a horse in hand with consideration for the safety of self, horse and other people and horses in the vicinity.
2. The candidate will be required to mount and dismount with agility and sensitivity for the horse and show his/her ability to ride two horses in walk, trot (rising and sitting) and canter – including correct canter leads and changing the canter lead. Transitions from pace to pace including walk to canter and canter to walk should be shown. Circles of varying sizes should be shown in the three paces of a suitable size for the horse being ridden to be executed with balance and rhythm. Accuracy of transitions at set marks should be shown. A few steps of rein-back will be required. The candidate may be requested to ride in pairs, threes or four abreast.
3. The candidate will be required to jump a short course of fences not exceeding 0.76m (2’6”).
4. The candidate will be required to vault on and ride bareback in all three paces and over fences   not exceeding 0.76m (2’6”).
5. The candidate will be required to ride in all three paces holding lance or sword and shield showing good overall control of the horse. The candidate may be required to wear a jousting helmet during this part of the Test. Riding as a ‘team’ abreast and pulling up at set marks may be required. 
Where a candidate is below the required standard, the examiner may stop the candidate at any time in the interest of safety of the horses and rider. Completing the Test does not necessarily indicate a pass has been achieved. 
To pass, a candidate must show a correct basic position with balance which is independent of the reins. His/her aids must be correct in order that the horse and rider show harmony in the work. 
Once a year, two BHS examiners will attend a Test in order to ensure consistency of examination and marking. 
The sections of the Test must all be passed on the same day. 
An Equity Horsemaster and helpers from the test center will be present to facilitate the running of the Test and command the "Stunt” part (5. above). The Horsemaster will be present throughout the “Stunt” section of the Test and for most of the riding skills sections. The Horsemaster and helpers will not ‘advise’ candidates. The Horsemaster must not be the applicant’s normal coach. Other than the above, spectators are not permitted. 
A candidate may not take the Test at a venue/centre where they have worked, ridden or trained in the last year. 
In making an application for the Test, a candidate is accepting that the decision of the BHS examiner is final. 
A candidate failing the Test on three occasions may not re-take the Test for at least one year from the date of the last Test. 
Riders must provide suitable riding attire for the test with particular attention to hats and footwear. No jewellery should be worn. Whips may be carried but spurs will not be allowed.
Hats must be to a current approved standard. Footwear must have a definite heel and a smooth sole – preferably jodhpur boots or long riding boots. Motor cycle boots or heavy boots are not suitable as they are too bulky to be safe in normal stirrup irons. 
(1) The BHS examiner only will give the result of the Test. (2) The names of successful candidates will be displayed as soon as possible following the Test(3) A short written report will be sent by the BHS examiner to all candidates outlining strengths and weaknesses. 

Complaints: A Moderator from the list of BHS examiners will be appointed in the case of candidate complaint. A £100 deposit must be lodged by the complainant with a written report of the reasons of the complaint. The deposit will be returned in the case of the complaint being upheld by the Moderator. 

(A complaint should not be on a ‘fail’ but on maladministration of the Test)


Proof of successful competition experience and provision of the relevant competition licenses from the Royal Automobile Club.


Proof of successful competition experience and provision of the relevant competition licenses from the Auto Cycle Union.

Thursday, 23 July 2015

Stunt Register Falling Requirement


Sorry I have not been updating as regularly as I said I would. I have been busy training and working, I had a great job for Sony recently which you can find on my Facebook page.

Anyway lets get on to the subject of the title.

The next qualification you can choose as a Stunt performer lies in the 'Falling' section of the register. There are two options to choose from that are accepted as skills and these are Trampolining and High Diving.

The specifics are listed below.


Skills to complete

1) Single Back Somersault: - Straight, Piked & Tucked. 
2) Single Front Somersault: - Piked & Tucked. 
3) ‘Gain’ Front Ss Tucked. * 
4) ‘Gain’ Back Ss Tucked. * 
5) Barani: - Straight, Piked & Tucked. 
6) Link: - Back somersault S, Barani S, Back Ss P. 
7) Crash-Dive Straight (3/4 front somersault to back), Barani Ball out Tucked. 
8) Lazy Back (3⁄4 Back Ss) Straight. 
9) Twist to Crash Dive (Arabian).
10) Twist to Front Somersault Tucked (Arabian). 
11) Full Twisting Back Ss. 
12) Full Twisting Front Ss. 
13) Side somersault. 
14) 1 1⁄4 Front Ss Tucked. 
15) 1 1⁄4 Back Ss Tucked. 
16) 1 3⁄4 Front somersault Tucked, Barani Ball out Tucked. 

Recommended Form Score

For the purpose of this test each skill / combination will be marked out of 10 with a minimum deduction of 0 and a maximum deduction of 5.
The candidate should score an average 2 deduction with not more than 3 on any skill / combination. 
The test will be carried out by an Equity / JISC approved examiner (Jeff Hewitt-Davis 07785 574467, and Gordon Seed 07966 204115) An appropriate certificate will be available for use by the examiner. 
* To ‘Gain’ means to travel in the opposite direction to rotation; i.e. ‘Gain Front Ss’ means to travel backwards along the bed whilst rotating forwards; ‘Gain Back Ss’ means to travel forwards along the bed whilst rotating backwards. 

High Diving

All Dives need to be performed from the 10 Metre Platform
Dives to complete:

Without Clothes 

1) Forward dive (straight/standing)
2) Forward dive (straight/running)
3) Back dive (straight)
4) Forward somersault (any position)
5) Reverse dive (straight/standing)
6) Fall off back somersault (any position) 
7) 1 forward dive with 1⁄2 twist (running)
8) 1 Barani somersault (Forward somersault with half twist)

With Clothes

(Long sleeved shirt/blouse, long trousers, shoes and socks) 
9) Reverse somersault (any position, standing or running)
10) Forward somersault (any position, running)
11) Falling back somersault 

Recommended Form Score

To pass a candidate must average 5 out of 10 over all the dives. 
Candidates will be expected to show full control of each movement required.
The test will be carried out, with bubbles, at an approved venue by Examiners nominated by the A.S.A./G.B.D.F. from the current national list of judges and not the applicant’s normal coach.

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Stunt Register Fighting Qualification requirement

As promised, here is a quick post detailing the exact requirements for the first qualification of the JISC register.
The first qualification is a fighting skill which is mandatory. Since 90% of a stunt performers job is fighting I think this makes sense.

The qualification requirements are detailed below.

Group A - Fighting

Category and Qualification required

Boxing - Evidence of skill and successful competition

Judo - First Kyu brown belt from the British Judo Association

Aikido  First Kyu or brown belt equivalent from a recognised body

Wrestling - Evidence of skill and successful competition experience

Other Martial Arts (Subject to JISC's discretion) - Level immediately below black belt from the appropriate governing body which must be affiliated to the appropriate British Martial Arts Association.
These include - Kung Fu, Karate, Jujitsu, Kendo, Tai Kwondo and any form of Kick Boxing

Thai Chi is not acceptable.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Divemaster with Calipso Diving, Lanzarote

Recently I spent 5 weeks  completing my PADI Divemaster with Calipso Diving out in Costa Teguise, Lanzarote. Without doubt it has been one of the best experiences of my life both on a personal and a professional level. Since i've been back I've struggled to get back to a normal schedule, this post is hopefully going to kick start that. Please forgive the time and quality of the photos between this and my last post.

The sea is truly an amazing place and you can't help but be humbled by its power and its diversity in both the species that dwell there and its environments. It also has the effect of helping a person put things in to perspective and refocus thier energies. Well at least it has for me and it could not have come at a better time.

So lets talk about what a PADI Divemaster is and whats involved with getting this qualification.


The PADI Divemaster is the first professional qualification in PADI's diving syllabus. This means its the first qualification that puts a person in a position of responsibility over other divers in a group.
The Divemaster qualification allows a diver the ability to lead already qualified divers in water or supervise from a boat or shore. It also allows (with the appropriate additional course) a Divemaster to take the Discover SCUBA diving experience for people new to diving. A Divemaster can also assist qualified PADI Instructors during courses such as the PADI Open Water course.
As such the Divemaster qualification has multiple facets but moves away a little from personal exams and skill assessments (though these are required) and starts focusing on the business of diving, your role as a guide, a source of knowledge and a role model to the divers who come in to your business. This all means that the Divemaster qualification becomes more like an internship, where you learn about the diving business, about customer service and professionalism. Three things that I learnt a lot about in my five weeks with Calipso Diving, certainly from a very diffferent angle to my experiences in the past.

Whats Involved?

The Divemaster qualification is quite extensive. It consists of 2 dive theory exams each of 50 multiple choice questions, an assessment of the 24 essential PADI diving skills to demonstration quality, some swim tests, a Emergency Assistance Plan, a mapping project and the accumulation of 60 or more dives. Also you have to ensure that you have the Emergency First Response qualification and be a PADI Rescue Dive before you can start the Divemaster qualification. You also get continually assessed on your professionalism with regards to customer service and the effort to which you put in to helping out around the dive shop itself. The jobs can range from assisting a PADI instructor with guided dives to rinsing the equipment and mopping the floor after a days diving. One of the best jobs was going out marketing in the afternoons. This is where we went as a centre to the local hotels and resorts and spoke to holiday makers about SCUBA diving and gave them a taste of breathing underwater. For many this was their first experience and its amazing to see how people react to this sort of sensation.

How did I find it?

Throw all the above together and it makes for one tough, busy but fantastic experience. I learnt a lot about professionalism and customer service but also about being proactive and anticipating the needs of the customers and the instructors. I also had a lot of fun in a sunny climate with fantastic people and saw some amazing creatures.

The hardest part was by far getting my dive skills up to a level that I could demonstrate to a student (under the direction of a PADI instructor). Trying to ensure that I showed all the critical components in a clear and controlled manner, while being underwater and that would allow the student to learn this skill efficiently was pretty difficult. Of all the exercises, the kit exchange was the worst. This is where you exchange your BDC (Buoyancy Control Device), Fins and Mask with your buddy, whilst breathing from one regulator. This means at regular intervals you have to be without a regulator in your mouth and access to air all the time holding your breath whilst exchanging your kit. I found this particularly difficult. It wasn't so much having to hold my breath but rather getting in to a rhythm of taking breaths part way through removing kit.
I can also tell why they require at least 60 dives before you can become a Divemaster. You simply don't have the experience with anything less. I know for myself I only started to gain real experience as my dive count got in to the high forties. At around this number I had had some kit issues, got hit by a few currents that took me way off course and one time where that combined with a heavy breathing day meant I had to surface by myself. Something that helped me to adjust the cylinder I use, which in turn sorted out my weighting and balance in the water.


I can safely say that I passed and I am now a certified Divemaster. it was a great experience. This was in no small part to my instructor Richard Watts ably helped by Janice and Peter. They showed great skill and patience in getting me up to speed. So thank you very very much and I would recommend Calipso Diving and the team there in a heart beat.
I met some great people, had a load of fun but better still I'm now half way through my qualifications for the stunt register. It has been a long road back, but I'm now making huge progress and I can't wait for whats in store for the rest of the year.

Do you guys have any diving stories, are you thinking of 'Going Pro'? Let me know in the comments below or email me directly.

Monday, 16 March 2015

Gymnastics Training for JISC Register

Wow I have been away for quite some time, I guess big changes in your life have a tendency to throw you off every once in a while. Im a lucky guy though getting to follow my dreams and life cant get much better. I noticed I have yet to cover one of my favourite sports for the stunt register so I'm going to do that below. Its going to be a relatively short introduction ill be covering gymnastics in more detail in May.

One of the disciplines that you can choose for the JISC register is Gymnastics. The requirements for this exam differ slightly dependent on gender and this is because there are different pieces of apparatus if you are a man or a woman.

I have been training for a long time and have really struggled to make good progress with only 1 session a week. I've had several injuries that have added a total of about 2.5 years to this time, which has only compounded the issue. Despite how difficult gymnastics has been for me it is without doubt one of my favourite disciplines.

Im not one of the guys lying down honest
Im only going to cover the mens side of the requirements here as I have no experience with the beam other than its really really hard work the couple of times I've had a play. I'm always astounded how the women who do it make it look graceful and do things on something a few inches wide that I can'd do even on the floor.

In total there are 8 pieces of apparatus we as male stunt performers are required to complete. They are Floor, Rings, Parallel Bars, High Bar, Low Bar, Pommel & Mushroom pommel trainer, Mini Tramp and a 4m Rope climb.

For me I have always found Floor and Rings the hardest. Historically my upper body has never been my strongest set of muscles and shoulder mobility for the more complicated moves on rings (inlocate and dislocate) have made this piece my biggest bug bare, couple that with a strangely irrational hatred of flipping backwards with my head hurtling to the floor and you can maybe see why I'm not overly keen on that piece either. Give me a somersault on the floor from standing and I'm golden.

What do I do?

My usual session consists of a warm up of about 15 minutes, running, stretching, wrist exercises and then 15 - 20 minutes on each piece. This means I can't fit every single piece of apparatus in to a 1.5 hour session.
I generally start with double leg circles (you spin feet together on the spot over the top of the apparatus completely straight) on the Mushroom Pommel trainer and make sure I do at least 5 in a row as a warm up. You can see this wonderful bit of kit below.

 I then move to the High Bar to work on my giants (full swings over the top of the bar), thankfully I have my back giants and now its time to work on forward giants. At some point ill get the stones to do either one or the other without gloves and loops (these keep you attached to the bar but still let you rotate, call it a safety feature). I find the hardest aspect is to keep a tight dished shaped especially at the top of the move rather than having the feet running behind the shoulders which causes difficulty with coming over the top.

I try to switch it up and start work on Parallel bars as they hammer my shoulders and upper arms when trying to get to handstand, so doing it when a bit fresher means I get a little more out of my time on it.

After this it's generally Pommel or Rings, though the rings at my gym are out of action so I have not really worked them at all recently, which is driving me up the wall a little. I don't have a lot to do on Pommel just some half sheers off the left and right leg (you alternate which leg goes the in front of you over the other side of the pommel), but its such an uncomfortable bit of apparatus its taking me a fair while to get the strength and technique correct.

I have recently realised I haven't been working Floor as much as I should be. This is primarily because its my weakest element and humans generally speaking and myself especially tend to practice what they are already good at and don't always focus on what they are bad at. Something I have started to correct over the last couple of weeks. My handstands have really taken shape lately as have my round offs (like a cartwheel only it has more spring and you face the opposite direction feet coming to the floor at the same time). My main issue right now is the flick or back handspring, its is my greatest foe in gymnastics and when I get back from Lanzarote I'm going to be hammering this technique like no bodies business.

My goal for this year is to focus more on what I'm bad at, in this case I will do floor every session without fail and start having a specific plan each week whilst upping the amount of time I train to two or three times a week. Its going to be a tall order and if anyone has any tips or advice or if this has helped at all let me know in the comments below. Im going to be away like I said in Lanzarote for a month or so but hopefully you'll get a post with some lovely pictures of sea life from my SCUBA diving as a slight change to your normal programming.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

The Climbing Works Visit

Recently I found myself near Sheffield helping out on some climbing courses. Unfortunately its miles from where I live so I had to stay away from home which is a bit of a drag. To make the best of a frustrating situation I decided to use the time to my advantage and pay a visit to The Climbing Works, Britain and perhaps the worlds premier bouldering wall.

What is it?

The Climbing Works

The Climbing Works is basically a big wear house specifically designed to cater towards bouldering of all levels from beginner to international level athletes. This means that there are no ropes used and you can pretty much fall off with 'relative safety'. The walls vary in difficulty by using different types of holds, more complicated moves and overhangs.

What did I get up to?

I was in the area to help on a Beginners climbing course with Pure Outdoor. I found that I had some time on the Sunday to go in to Sheffield and have a quick look at a wall that was recommended to me by the instructor who I was shadowing. I went and headed straight to The Climbing Works.
I initially went to just have a look around and do some bouldering by myself. I walked in, paid a one time lifetime registration fee of £6 and a one off session cost of £6 (Which I think is not too bad) and started taking some pictures. Whilst marvelling at the set up and the scale of the walls compared to what I have experienced before I noticed an advertisement for free 1.5 hour adult climbing sessions twice weekly.
As luck would have it, I heard over the PA system that a class was happening in just under 5 minutes. So needless to say I ran to the front desk and asked if I could join in. They were happy to let me do so even though they were half way through their 8 week cycle.

The Climbing Works

I joined the session and our coach for the day gave the new people (myself included) a quick run down of what they had done in previous weeks but then went straight into the lessons focus for the week. Naturally then it would have to be a stamina session. This involved doing all 40 or so green routes (the easiest routes) in the complex within an hour and then moving on to the red routes if we had time. We did this in pairs and myself and my climbing buddy managed to get on to the red routes within the time given to us. Once we hit that hour we did a conditioning session and cool down, which consisted of some brilliant isomeric core holds and some good stretches.

After the cool down we were left to our own devices, either to work more on technique or just go home. I was desperate to get home so decided enough was enough and headed back down south.

What do I think of The Climbing Works


If you can't tell I think The Climbing Works is one of the best if not the best bouldering walls I have visited. The set up has been clearly thought about to maximise use of space and encourage a diverse range of problems (bouldering routes) to suite every level of climber, at the far end there is a competition level wall with world class route setting.

The Climbing Works

There are a couple of lounging areas dotted around should you want to have a rest and finger boards for grip strengthening. They have a cafe where they offer a free beverage to anyone who has walked or cycled to the centre and convenient lockers for those who want to keep their belongings out of reach. The building as a whole is well looked after and as clean as it can be with heavy use of chalk and best of all does not smell of bad feet like my local wall. They also have a Mini Works in a separate building geared towards teach children how to climb, which can only be a good thing with climbing attempting to become an olympic sport. Hopefully this will help to cultivate future generations of awesome climbers way better than I will ever be.

The other stuff

The staff are friendly and welcoming, they give you all the information you require on their routes and where the necessary information is should you need to have a closer look, for example what colours are what grades. The free adult sessions I think is an inspired idea and encourages regular use of the wall but also the actual progression of an adults climbing which will only encourage them to continue to get better in a safe and efficient manner and ultimately enjoy climbing more.
The session itself was fun, hard work and even though this time not aimed at technique, I learnt more about how to climb and movement than I have done on my own. I failed at two climbs towards the end as I was getting tired so I know it certainly made me work and with added conditioning my core was shredded. These lessons I think are invaluable as I know first hand there is nothing more frustrating than trying to learn on your own and feeling like you are getting no where.
The wall seems centred around having fun with a very varying degree of route types with a slide in one area I think geared towards kids, though I'm pretty sure I saw a few adults sliding down it while I was there, again there seemed to be no pretence, it was just about the climbing and having a good time.

Wrap Up

All in all I'd say if you have never climbed before, or even if you have, if you find yourself in Sheffield make your way to The Climbing Works. Take your kids to The Mini Works and have a go yourself, Its brilliant. The team have hit the nail on the head when it comes to accessible and competition level bouldering in one place with the ethos of British climbing showing strongly through their approach.

Any of you been there, what do you think of The Climbing Works? Let me know in the comment section below.