The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has reported that it recommends people who are between the ages of 6 and 17 get at least one hour of physical exercise every day. The problem, which is no secret, is that kids between those ages spend more time looking at a screen, (computers, television, phones, and video games) than they spend doing anything else. These activities take up about seven and a half hours every day. Only about 30% of kids get any exercise every day. Many parents are turning to a variety of sports to help their kids get more physical activity into their lives. One popular option is gymnastics classes. Here are some ways your child (or you) can get more out of local gymnastics classes.
- Encourgae them to practice what they learn at home. There is a reason most advertising campaigns feature a lot of repetition. By doing (or reading and hearing) something over and over, you get to learn it better. Have your kids show off the moves and poses they learned in class. Some find success in making games out of this. Get them to get into position as fast as they can. Always be encouraging when they do the poses and moves correctly.
- Get to know the teachers. First of all, this does show how involved you are in your kid’s life but they can give you other ideas for how you can help him or her or them get better at the sport. Getting feedback on how your kid is doing can help you help them to get better. It is always rewarding to see improvement.
- Get excited when they learn new skills, poses, and moves. Few things keep a person motivated to continue with sports classes like a celebration when progress is made. The kind of celebration is up to you but making a big deal of progress made can help your child remain interested in the sport.
- Get social with the people who run the classes. Often, gyms or programs have social events for the students and their parents. These are great for getting to know the people who are teaching the classes as well as the other students and their parents. These can be fun ways to be a part if the community.
- Work with your child to set goals. There are a number of reasons that this is a great idea. Not only will it help your child improve and advance their skills but will provide a solid basis for goal setting and follow through that will benefit them in the long run, as they progress through school and gets jobs as they reach adulthood.
- Encourage them to work on strength training at home. In class, they can learn skills, moves, and poses but they need to work on building their muscles so they can be strong enough to give them the ability to perform these tasks in the best way they can. No sport is just built on practice or classes. To be truly successful as a gymnast, people have to work on strength training and aerobic activity.
- Encourage them to work on their flexibility at home. Few things are as important to master the art of gymnastics like flexibility. You may even want to take part. Exercises that improve flexibility can be helpful at just about all stages of life.
- Take some time to watch the pros. If there are gymnastics events on TV, take some time out from the work and practice to watch how the professionals do it. Many people watch their sport of choice on TV to get more inspired and see how the people who do it for money tackle their sport. There are also some great videos on sites such as YouTube that can inspire budding gymnasts.
The sport, known today as gymnastics, was invented at least two thousand years ago. It remains popular and, as of 2013, there were about 5 million people doing it around the world. Enrolling your child in a gymnastics class can help them grow into their own with confidence, drive, and a great work ethic.