Gymnastics Article

Benefits of Participation in Gymnastics Programs

ALL children benefit from classes and participation in gymnastics. The areas listed below are a small sampling of the actual benefits from gymnastics activities. You have done a terrific job of parenting by getting your child interested in this educational sport. Many of the benefits of gymnastics are NOT related to learning gymnastics skills, but more important developmental areas that will help your child become a better student and young adult. Gymnastics programs are not solely about creating gymnasts. There are so many more important areas to consider. ALL children, regardless of ability, should stay in gymnastics for 3 – 5 years, if not longer, to get the full benefit of what gymnastics teaches.

Self Confidence

Through the challenge of learning gymnastics skills, the students gain confidence with each step that they take. Doing skills on the beams and bars helps them gain confidence in their own abilities. This improved self confidence will transfer to other areas of their lives including school.

Coordination

Gymnastics instruction helps develop better coordination and body movement. For the young child, a great deal of their self confidence comes from how coordinated they are because their “world” is so physical rather than mental. Gymnastics improves coordination

Non “Star” Athletes

Some children do not have the skills to be a “star” athlete in any sport. But in gymnastics we can control their progress and challenges. Children who are a little weaker, a little overweight and/or a little less flexible can all find success with our terrific, caring gymnastics teachers. EVERY child can benefit from gymnastics.

Hard Work Ethic

Gymnastics is a tough sport. The best thing about it is that the kids have to earn the skills, we just can’t give them to them. This hard work shows them that the mre they work the more they learn. What a great lesson. You want your children to have a “hard work ethic,” don’t you?

Flexibility

Participation in gymnastics helps the athletes become more flexible. Baseball players, basketball players, football players and all other sports need more flexible athletes. Gymnastics builds flexibility better than any other sport. Flexibility also helps limit injuries.

Social Skills

Especially for the younger ones, gymnastics gives the little ones a weekly chance to learn about social skills like listening and following directions, taking turns, being quiet, respecting others and a lot more. They gymnastics teachers work hard to build social skills with their students because they are so important in other aspects of the lives of little ones.

Discipline

So, so important today. We do have rules in gymnastics classes and the teachers treat these rules as being very important. The more discipline the children get today the better off they will be. Gymnastics classes are a very controlled environment. Very helpful for the child.

Politeness

Yes, we stress politeness in classes as the way to treat others. The teacher is polite to the students and the students are expected to do the same to the teachers and to their class mates. The more the kids are exposed to “politeness” the better.

Fitness

In this world of a lot of obese children, fitness is CRITICAL to the current and future health of our children. Gymnastics classes are full of activities that will make your child more fint and help keep them healthy. You have them in the right place if fitness is important to you and your family.

Overcoming Fears

Some parts of gymnastics are very challenging. We think that this is good training for all kids. They need to be challenged. The key is that we challenge them with “attainable challenges” so that they are successful the majority of the time. To face a challenge, maybe with a little fear, and then to accomplish the challenge is a wonderful part of gymnastics classes and it happens all of the time. We want confident aggressive children.

Learning To Perform In Front Of People

What a terrific, sometimes overlooked, benefit of gymnastics. Gymnastics classes have the student perform their skills in front of other students which helps teach “performance” and makes performing in front of others easier. Gymnastics students tend to be the 1st ones at school to volunteer to do things in front of the class as they have learned to “perform” which is going to help them throughout their lives.

Determination

Gymnastics builds determination. Some gymnastics skills are hard to master so the children learn determination in continuing to work hard even when things are tough. Such an important lesson.

Strength Development

Moving and lifting their bodies during gymnastics activities helps build upper body strength as well as leg strength. This helps the gymnast as well as the students who are also in other sports. Do you want a strong child? You have them in the right place.

Caring Teachers

Our gymnastics teachers care about EVERY student regardless of their potential. We KNOW that every child can learn a great deal by being involved in this incredible sport. Every child is important in our gymnastics classes.

Great Parenting!

You have done a great job of parenting by having your children in gymnastics. Keep them with us as long as possible as gymnastics benefits all athletes and every child regardless of talent and ability. Your child will be a much more mature, well prepared young adult because of their involvement in gymnastics instruction. Gymnastics teaches so much more than forward rolls!

Prepared by Tom Burgdorf, National Gymnastics Clinician, National Committee Member AmeriKids Gymnastics Association and publisher of the free Parenting An Athlete Newsletter. For a free newsletter subscription contact Tom at tomgymnet@aol.com or at www.gymnetsports.com