I’ve been asked over the years many times by parents, “Why should my child participate in Tumbling & Trampoline, Cheerleading and Gymnastics?” One of the biggest benefits would be that even though these can all be team sports, athletes in these sports succeed or fail based on their own individual actions. Therefore, success or failure is directly proportional to the effort they put in day after day in the gym. Consequently, there is no blaming the team here. Athletes achieve success through months and years of hard work and dedicated effort. Because of the long term commitment and dedication required by these sports, excellence and strong character development are fostered.
Athletes who train multiple days per week tend to be fantastic students due to the discipline created by managing a hectic schedule. This can include; school time, many hours in the gym, car rides to and from practices and travel to and from competitions. As a result, these athletes more often than not, juggle all of this without the aid or pushing of parents. Hence, self-discipline becomes a by-product of the daily hard work, goal-setting, focus and determination required to succeed in these sports.
Some other benefits that all children receive in these sports whether they are a competitive athlete or they are coming to the gym once a week as a recreational student are as follows:
- Strength, Flexibility and Balance
- Coordination – The Body Control learned in these sports has great carryover to all other sports and activities.
- Spatial Awareness
- Confidence, Determination and Dedication
- Leadership and Teamwork
- Goal Setting
- Learning to fall safely and avoid injury
- Creates Strong Bones and Flexible Muscles
- Learning how to deal with success as well as disappointment
- Leading a healthy and active lifestyle
- Learning about the physics of why skills work the way they work – athletes are confronted with the reality of physics on every skill they perform.
- Athletes tend to show maturity beyond their years.
Certainly, with all of these benefits, participation in Tumbling & Trampoline, Cheerleading and Gymnastics is a great place to start for children! As one of the former USA Gymnastics ad campaigns goes, “Start Here, Go Anywhere”. Get out there and find a gym!