Anon Why did your child start gymnastics?

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Feb 16, 2022
Why did your child start gymnastics? What inspired them to keep going? And what are some good impacts it can do in someones life?
My dd was born premature any had very low muscle tone. The drs recommended mommy and me classes. It was similar to the Little Gym franchise. She seemed to really take to it and wanted more once she was preschool age so we signed her up at a true gymnastics academy and she never looked back. She tried a few other sports but always preferred gymnastics.

I think gymnastics is like many other year-round sports in that it teaches self discipline and time management due to the high number of hours required. It also provides whole body balance more so than most other sports. It is a constant challenge of building new skills, which doesn't really happen in other traditional sports.
My daughter started at 2 years old in a "mommy and me" class just because we were looking for an extra curricular activity and the options were slim for her age in our town. She fell in love and even though she has tried other sports she seems to have a different passion for gymnastics. She is only 8.5 though so we will see if it sticks.

I think that gymnastics taught her balance and good body awareness at a young age as well as good social skills. As she has progressed I think she has gained a lot of valuable life skills like being able to celebrate a friends acomplishments even if she is a little jealous that she has gotten the same skill. She has learned self-confidence and how to work through fears and anxieties. She has gained great physical strength as well as mental strength.
She went to a gymnastics day program. It was spring break, I had to work and couldn't bring her with me, so off she went. The next day I got a phone call from the coach asking if she would please join their pre-team. The rest is history. She likes to move and as the previous poster said, there is the constant challenge of new skills. With many other sports the main goal is the perfection of a limited number of skills, but in gymnastics the next level brings a completely different skill set, so it keeps it interesting
My wife and I were both gymnasts and now we are coaches. So we put our kids in gymnastics too. We like gymnastics and it was free when they started as that was one of the few benefits of being a coach.
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We started gymnastics because it was one of the few activities that could start with a very young and very active toddler (parent and toddler classes from 18 months). They’ve kept going simply because they enjoy the classes. Benefits as young children would be confidence in their physical abilities and mostly are able to judge their limitations
We stumbled into gymnastics. Her best friend asked her to attend a gymnastics summer camp with her. At the end of camp she was asked to tryout for team. We'll stick with gymnastics as long as she enjoys it.
She applies the life lessons she's learned from gymnastics to overcome the bumps in the road or challenges she encounters with school, friends, and basically life.
My daughter was a fearless climber. She was also born premature and was tiny for her age and I got sick of judgemental strangers telling me ‘your baby is at the top of the rope pyramid’ in playgrounds - as if I didn’t know and wasn’t keeping a good eye on her. I decided to take her to gym where she could climb and swing in a safe controlled environment.

She loved it so much - among a large group of three year olds she stood out for her strength and focus. She listened hard, and independently did the circuits with serious attention to detail. I turned down the first two invitations to the squad development group because I thought she was too young and I thought four hours a week was crazy talk (lol) but accepted the third because she clearly needed more.

She is only an average gymnast, objectively speaking, but she’s completely a gymnast at heart.
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My dd took ballet/tap at 7 and then jazz at 6. In the jazz class the teacher was hoping they could all learn a cartwheel. She asked me to show her how to do one. I actually did it (would probably hurt myself if I tried now). Within 10 minutes she was doing cartwheels all over the house. A friend had a much older daughter on team so she suggested trying there and she was invited to pre-team. She started competing at 9 and is still doing it as a hs senior. She switched from JO to Xcel after level 7 because of injuries, fear, high hours and stress. She is much happier doing Xcel and would have quit if we didn't find this gym with a great program that works well for her.

She has learned so many great things from gymnastics such as persistence, perseverance and time management.
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when D was about 16 months, I found him on top of the refrigerator. Still not 100% sure how he got up there, but we knew he needed something. His sister (not a gymnast) went to preschool at a Gym, and there was a parent tot class available while she was at school. So we signed him up. The all know.
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My kiddo started at 6, but was only in for 3 months bc of Covid. Then a year or so later, she attended a day camp at a gym, mostly fun and games and they saw her do a cartwheel and invited her to their dev team. She spent 3 months there, then competed Silver, and now is 9 on Gold. So far, aside from the insane muscle strength she's developed, I've noticed she handles stress and pressure well and is very calm/cool/collected. I have no idea how long she'll do gymnastics but she's absolutely loves it.
We started gymnastics because my daughter asked to. Which is funny because she was four, and I wonder how she even knew what gymnastics was, but she's always been that kind of kid. I put her in a preschool class with a cutesy name like tumbling tots, and after a few months they moved her to developmental. I did not immediately realize she changed classes until she brought home a 'devlopmental report card' listing the skills she would need to move to level one and where she was with them. She never looked back.
Lol we didn’t start with mommy and me like most people. Mostly because the one time we tried, she angrily refused to hold my hand to walk across the beam and said she didn’t want me in there with her. So she waited till she was 3, and we tried to put her in every other sport possible but she loved gymnastics and hated everything else. Got invited to team when she turned 5 and I turned it down to do preteam instead, she’s going to be 11 soon as is thriving in optionals while still hating most other sports
My daughter was doing kung fu from ages 3-7. Her sensei called us in for a meeting saying she doing flips in class instead of listening, and maybe you should put her in gymnastics. So we put her in gymnastics, now she’s a 13/Jr elite
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We didn't really pursue gymnastics it sort of found us.
She was enrolled at a toddler movement class at a local daycare, the teacher who was a former gymnast mentioned that DD loved playing with the gymnastics gear, was really strong for her size, and that the real gym down the road has rec classes for kids her age. We signed her up for rec classes and she was having fun and doing well but didn't think much beyond the next rec class, but her friend from soccer wanted to try out for team and didn't want to do it by herself so asked DD if she would try out with her for support. At try outs she was by far the smallest girl but held her own on all the physical events and other than a moment when she didn't know how to get on the beam due to being too short to reach the top, did great. Got asked to join the team and it's been her thing ever since.
I always did a lot of flips when I was younger and would hang off the shower bar at 2. Couldn't afford it at the time, but when I was 9, my mom signed me up for a rec class at a local gym.

To make a long story short, I shot up to level 4 rec in a few months, got invited to team, and couldn't join due to our financial situation. Around 11 I had gained the skills as a level 6 (thanks to 3 amazing coaches), and one day at a open gym, I was told by a team coach that I was too old for team, no gym would want a almost 12 year old on their team, and that I wouldn't get far in gymnastics.

Fast forward 7 years later, a different team coach at the gym left, bought a new gym and invited me on to the competitive team to train (and compete if I chose too) for free. Was such an incredible blessing and I am forever thankful for him and the coaches that helped me along the way.

Honestly I'd have to say the most important lesson gymnastics taught me was to seriously, never give up. The day that coach told me I'd never make it on a team, I genuinely considered quitting. Went home crying and told my mom I wanted to throw my grips and leos away. I just hope I see that coach one day, look him in the eye, and tell him "I made it".
It's pretty cold here in the winter and I didn't want to sit on another field or be stuck in an ice rink so that my kids could burn off energy. Gymnastics offered a great indoor activity and there was a class for boys 5-7 and girls 5-7 at the same time 10 mins away. I could never have imagined the long and winding path we would travel in the sport when I signed them up back then.
We moved to a new area in November and a place where rain happens pretty much daily from November until April. We were tired of being cooped up. I had a 2 year old and 3 year old, so I took them to a toddler gymnastics class. My daughter loved it from the minute she stepped foot in the gym. She was Jr. Tops by age 5 and team by age 7 (one gym closed, so we had to find a new one). She has been competing since. She is 13 now and training 8/9 skills in XCEL Diamond.

How has it helped? She has been doing the equivalent of a part time job outside of school since 2nd grade (16 hours training plus travel time and competitions). She has time management skills of someone much older. She also understands hard work, perseverence, and how to win humbly and lose graciously. She understands teamwork and support, and after some rough coaching experiences, she has learned her own value, not what someone else decides she is worth (this is a huge one for me). Her worth isn't her score or her podium finishes like many seem to place on gymnastics.
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I was a SAHM and took my daughter to a lot of different activities during the day. She tried a beginner class at Little Gym and did well there. She took another advanced class there and still liked it, so I decided to switch her to the closest gymnastics gym near me. She was moved into the advanced preschool class right away and then invited to training group. She started competing level 2 at 6 and made it to level 10 last year in 8th grade.

I honestly don't know what keeps her going. She had a lot of success through level 7 and I'm sure that helped. Injuries messed up level 8. Level 9 was a rough start, but she made it to easterns so I guess it ended ok. Then multiple injuries that summer/fall between 9 and 10. So first year level 10 was ok, but definitely not what she would have hoped. So maybe she is still doing it looking for some redemption? All of her friends have moved on and she is now in a huge team, but with no close connections. I'm not convinced she wants to compete in college, although she says she kind of does. She's also in high school and enjoying that a ton, but it is not easy when she leaves the house at 6:20am and get's home around 9:00pm every day. I don't know how or why she does it, tbh. lol. I'm constantly asking if she is sure she wants to be there, and she always says yes, so we'll just keep on trucking for now.
Finding gymnastics actually started with my oldest son. He climbed everything so I figured I should put him in a class where he would learn to climb (and fall) safely. We ended up doing parent-tot classes at The Little Gym which he loved.

Then came his little sister. Climbing on everything. No fear. So same deal. Except, I was REALLY tired of having to do the classes with my kids. So for my daughter I found a gym that offered a gymnastics based preschool 2x/week. My boys also took gymnastics classes at the same gym. The teacher suggested my daughter might be team material. I asked her if she was interested in competing and had to explain what that meant since she was 3 at the time. As soon as she realized that you can get medals and trophies for doing gymnastics (like her brothers did for playing other sports) she was really excited.

We ended up switching gyms to one that had a more progress oriented program for preschoolers. A few months there and she was invited to pre-team and eventually team. After another gym change (abusive coaching at the first) she's found her gym home. After a couple of years she switched from JO to Xcel and is super happy! She loves gymnastics first, but loves having time for other interests as well plus appreciates the flexibility in skills that comes with Xcel. She's currently a platinum.

What kept her going was simply a love for the sport. The only time she ever considered quitting was after her year on team at the gym with the abusive coaching. When we figured out it was the coach that was the issue and not the gym we contacted another gym for a tryout. She LOVED the coach who did the tryout and wanted to switch and has been happy every since!

What has she gained/learned? Grit, goal setting determination, physical fitness, friends, self-confidence, etc. She is the most confident teen girl I know and I think that is largely due to her positive experience with gymnastics. She's way more well-adjusted and resilient than I ever was at that age!
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