Gymnastics is a fantastic sport for little ones. My daughter has been attending gym lessons since she was 3 and my 4 year old son is about to join her class.
In what ways can gym be beneficial to kids?
Personal and Social Development
Discipline and Patience
There can be a lot of waiting around during gymnastics classes and the children have to be well disciplined and patient whilst waiting.
All the children need to take turns using the equipment, which also teaches them patience and sharing skills.
Listening and following direction
In order to be safe using the equipment, it is really important that the children listen carefully to what is being said, follow directions carefully and have an awareness of what is going on around them.
What else should children do whilst waiting for their turn on the equipment? Make friends of course! Rachel has a friend who she has been together with on and off since she started. A few weeks ago I peeked in on them and saw them holding hands!
Rachel has always lacked confidence, but slowly gymnastics has helped her build on this. She has competed three times at her club in front of an audience and hasn’t been phased by them.
The obvious benefit to any kind of sporting activity is to develop core strength. Gymnastics has given Rachel really strong arm and leg muscles.
In order not to hurt yourself whilst performing gymnastics moves, it is important to be well co-ordinated. Rachel still struggles with this as she is very tall and lanky and can be a bit awkward.
Some of Rachels favourite activities at gym require a great sense of balance. Her favourite is the balance beam and she has learnt to forward roll along it. Hopefully next we will get to see her cartwheel along it.
Again discipline but this time more in the physical sense. Making your body do what you want it to do and moving steadily and smoothly.
These are some of the reasons why gymnastics is great for my daughter, and I am sure that there are so many other ways in which gym has benefitted her, that I haven’t thought to mention.
She is probably not going to be an Olympic gymnast, but suffice to say that for us, it has been great and we shall continue with it, for now, whilst she still enjoys it, and we are looking forward to seeing how Jack takes to it.