How to teach your child gymnastics at home

In addition to being a lot of fun, learning gymnastics is a great way for children to develop coordination, gain confidence, and stay healthy. Unfortunately, sending a child to gymnastics classes can be rather expensive and time-consuming, especially when it is uncertain whether or not the child will maintain an interest in gymnastics long enough to make the classes worthwhile. However, parents can easily teach their child gymnastics basics at home.

Before beginning, parents will need to make sure that they have the proper equipment. At the very minimum, they must get a floor mat. Other specialty mats, such as a triangle-shaped incline mat could come in handy, too. Balancing beams, including specialty practice beams made out of foam, are also available. Parents probably won’t want to purchase a foam balancing beam right away, but they may want to consider buying one later.

If the parents have not taken gymnastics themselves, they should also buy an instructional video; even parents who have gymnastic experience may want to buy a video. In addition to providing ideas for new moves, videos will show the correct form for each move. Form is a crucial part of gymnastics; without proper form, moves do not look right, and they can even be dangerous.

Before every lesson, parents must make sure that their children stretch properly. Every part of the body should be stretched, and special attention should be given to the wrists, ankles, and neck. In addition to warming up the muscles and preventing injury, stretching also increases flexibility, which is an important aspect of gymnastics. Stretching should last about ten minutes and should never be skipped.

Children should begin by learning the basic gymnastics moves, including summersaults, cartwheels, bridges, handstands, and splits. They should spend a long time perfecting each move and make sure that they are always using the correct form. Once a child has mastered these basic moves, parents should choreograph a routine, which the child can then perform to music. This demonstration will make the child feel a sense of accomplishment.

More advanced moves that can be learned at home include the backbend, the front walkover, the back walkover, and then flip. Many children first learn to do a flip on a trampoline. However, home trampolines can be extremely dangerous because of the risk of falling onto the hard edge or onto the floor. The smaller the trampoline is, the greater the danger is.

Only one child at a time should be allowed on small trampolines; when on a trampoline, children must remember to maintain correct form and not practice flips or other advanced moves if there is not enough room.

By teaching their children basic gymnastics at home, parents can save money while spending quality time with their children. However, children who appear to be dedicated to gymnastics will eventually need to take classes. Children will benefit from professional instruction, and classes will provide children with access to balancing beams, uneven bars, parallel bars, and vaults.

Additionally, children taking gymnastics classes will be able to interact with other child gymnasts, both as friends and in competitions.

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