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Why Gymnastics Will Benefit Your Child

Updated on July 4, 2014
krsharp05 profile image

Kristi has been a competitive gymnastics coach for 25+ years, coached levels 3-10 to state, regional, western and national titles.

Yurchenko Vault
Yurchenko Vault | Source

The Preeminent Athlete

Gymnastics is the premier sport for youth. Not only does it provide a physical outlet, it offers an opportunity for children of all ages to develop mentally and emotionally as well. It's no secret that gymnasts are exceptional athletes. The best thing about gymnastics is that most children can do gymnastics at some level.

So what about the benefits that aren't so obvious? Gymnastics offers numerous advantages and many of them happen right before your eyes and you never even notice. Those are the secret and wonderful things that make gymnastics so great.

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The Gymnastics Revelation

  • Since gymnastics is an all-body sport, it provides exercises for kids to get stronger in their upper body and their lower body all at the same time. Some sports are body-specific and require that athletes do additional conditioning to strengthen or even-out other areas of their physique. Because of the great demands of gymnastics skills, the sport achieves a natural physical balance for both boys and girls. When performed correctly, gymnastics skills will naturally build a child's strength.
  • Children who do gymnastics learn social skills. Being able to take turns, stand in line and wait your turn are all key behaviors for kiddos to start school and successfully navigate their way through grade school, middle school and high school.
  • When a child is performing or practicing several stations or skills at a time, they are also developing problem solving mechanisms. The ability to move from one station to the next without hesitation is their own personal logistics. Their organizational habits will start to develop and with continued learning, kids blossom and go from being able to do two or three stations to doing seven or ten stations successfully.

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Better Because of Gymnastics

  • If a child's gymnastics teacher is paying attention to detail, posture performance will be included in workout. Kids who do gymnastics have better posture which also means they'll have less chances of back pain later in life and handsome school pictures!
  • Getting your kids involved in an activity is an excellent idea and while all sports can be dangerous, did you realize that gymnastics is actually pretty safe? Kids have a fairly good awareness of their own bodies and of their surroundings and because they're reflexive in nature, they're nimble and move fast so if something comes at them, they'll usually move with lightening speed. When children fall, they do get bumps and bruises but those types of boo-boos heal. Gymnastics helps develop an additional "super-sense" of body awareness. Because gymnastics requires kids to be hyper-aware of their bodies, how and when to move them and a strength beyond most other sports, kiddos have to know how to manipulate themselves better than Spiderman. Don't expect fast results when you join gymnastics. It takes a minimum of three months to see any results and typically closer to 1-3 years for actual strength and competitive results.
  • Accomplishment is a feeling that cannot be reproduced, found on the internet, made with construction paper or purchased at the local Price Chopper. When a child, adolescent or teenager feels good about something they've accomplished you can see it because it's beaming all over their face. That's a beautiful sight and something you can't hand to a child because they have to work for it. Kids who do gymnastics understand accomplishment because they work very hard for many of the skills. Once they achieve the skills, they're constantly asking their parents to watch because they're so proud of what they've learned.

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    • krsharp05 profile image
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      Kristi Sharp 3 years ago from Born in Missouri. Raised in Minnesota.

      greeneyedblondie, Thanks for the great comment. Gymnastics is an excellent sport for kids from 18 months+. I hope when you have children your kiddos enjoy it as much as I have throughout my entire life. Best, -K

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      greeneyedblondie 3 years ago

      I've wanted to do gymnastics for years, but when I was very young I wanted to be in ballet (now that I'm older, no thanks). By the time I realized my dream was in gymnastics I was a bit too old to join. Also even if I could have started my parents didn't and still don't have that kind of money for it. It's always fun to watch it on TV and someday when I have children I'll definitely sign them up!

    • krsharp05 profile image
      Author

      Kristi Sharp 4 years ago from Born in Missouri. Raised in Minnesota.

      Coach Ellen, Thank you for reading. I appreciate you taking the time to comment. This was a fun little hub to write. It sort of hit me one day when I was teaching that I should focus on the hidden treasures of this wonderful sport. Thank you for voting. -K

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      Coach Ellen 4 years ago from Texas

      Great hub! voted up and useful. I always enjoy reading your hubs.