My 5-year-old daughter completed her first term of pre-school gymnastics at Gymkidz Newtown, and what a fabulous experience it has been for her. I have seen her develop physically and mentally, and have a ball along the way. Gymkidz offers a non-traditional program of gymnastics, which includes acrobatics and tumbling, whilst also building on other skills such as counting, colours and numbers.
The program is set up in a clever way where it’s like the kids are on an adventure journey each week. They learn new skills and gymnastics fundamentals, and at the end of the class are rewarded with stamps and stickers for their achievements in “Movement”, “Thinking” and “Growing”. They are even given a cute certificate which visually shows them how they are progressing. I found this to be a great idea, as we all know young kids respond well to rewards!
What has really stood out to me, is the way the coaches engage with the kids and incorporate their interests into the program. They are positive, highly energised and they make it fun for the kids. This is what keeps them curious and holds their attention! My daughters favourite lesson was during Halloween. The shape of the week, the “tuck” shape was known as a pumpkin and the kids practiced curling up their body into a pumpkin shape. Not only did it capture their attention (as they were enthralled by the upcoming Halloween festivities!), but it integrated and developed gymnastics skills in an exciting and engaging way. The coaches continued to incorporate this shape in different activities throughout the class, further reinforcing this learning in a positive way. I was impressed, and even more so when my daughter continued to practice this shape for weeks after the lesson.
When I asked my daughter what her 3 favourite parts of the class were she said:
1. Being able to walk along the balance beam myself, and land on my feet after doing the “Crown, skier, motorbike” (a fundamental gymnastics position!)
She was initially unsteady and her balance has since come in leaps and bounds.
2. Learning to do a forward roll!
I watched the coaches guide the kids safely and they used handprints so they learnt the position they needed to put their hands and feet. This was such a great idea.
3. Swinging on the rings!
My daughters upper body strength has improved with the different weekly activities on the rings. She’s now able to swing and hold up her body steadily in a tuck position (the Halloween activities continue to prevail!).
Gymnastics classes are a great pursuit for all types of children from a young age. No experience is needed to start this circuit based gymnastics program, my daughter had never had a lesson before.
I have found the Gymkidz pre-school program really helps kids develop their motor skills in a fun, interactive and supportive way. Coupling that with developing listening skills, turn taking and social skills, this program covers a whole lot more than pure gymnastics.
Phone: 0406 042 385
Images supplied by Gymkidz