If your child is already taking advantage of all the benefits of gymnastics, they’re likely working on their skills and trying to improve constantly. Of course, the recent Olympics were extremely motivating to make gymnasts across the world, especially seeing the bravery of women like Simone Biles as she dealt with adversity while pursuing her gymnastics dream.
One great way that your child can start enjoying more time honing their skills and having fun with their gymnastics friends is to start going to an open gym for open gymnastics. What is open gym gymnastics? Here’s a closer look at what you need to know.
What is Open Gym Gymnastics?
When you walk into a gymnastics club for open gymnastics, it probably looks chaotic…but it’s organized chaos. During an open gym, gymnasts have unstructured, but supervised, gym time that allows them to explore different areas of the gym and have free time to practice their latest moves on their own. It’s a great time for gymnasts to work on improving their skills.
Of course, along with that unstructured time to boost skills, open gymnastics also offers a ton of fun for kids. The lack of structure lets them interact with their friends, having a great time while they practice.
Usually, most apparatuses in the gym are available to use during open gymnastics. However, some pieces of equipment may be restricted based upon a child’s current skill level. Make sure that your child knows to always follow these rules in the gym — they’re important to their safety.
What’s the Environment Like?
What should you expect when your child goes to open gymnastics? What’s the environment like? The environment is very free, positive, and uplifting. Everyone comes to have fun while practicing new moves and improving their skills, but it’s very laid back, too. The atmosphere is clean and healthy, and an open gym is a place where parents can feel comfortable with how kids are spending their time.
Everyone is encouraged to be very respectful of one another, too. Taking turns on equipment and encouraging each other’s skills are important. You may want to remind your child that when they engage in open gymnastics, there will be kids of all different skill levels there. They shouldn’t feel intimidated by kids who are more skilled than they are, and they should never make fun of someone who is at a lower skill level and working to get better. Even though open gymnastics aren’t structured, it’s a time that kids can be uplifting and encouraging to each other.
Benefits of Open Gymnastics
Some of the benefits your kids will enjoy engaging in open gymnastics include:
- Kids can explore and practice at their own pace
- Beyond gymnastics equipment, there are other fun options like bouncing on trampolines, bounce houses or doing obstacle courses
- A fun, motivating, positive environment
- Children build more self-confidence and enhance their social skills
- Exercising becomes fun for kids of every age with no pressure to perform
- Boosts coordination and flexibility
Safety is Important!
Many parents wonder about the safety of their kids during open gymnastics. During open gymnastics, there’s usually a coach on the floor the entire time. There may be additional helpers to monitor the kids. While the coach will be on the floor, they have many responsibilities and are monitoring everyone for safety. A coach is unlikely to have time to work directly with individual kids.
If you and your child arrive at the open gym early, be sure that you wait until the coach on duty has given you the go-ahead to enter the gym area. Sometimes there are classes or sessions right up until the open gym time begins.
Because safety is a top priority, the number of children allowed at open gymnastics is limited. If you have younger children, an adult is often required to stay with them in the gym.
Great Open Gym Options at Lake City Twisters
Along with a fun, clean, and safe experience, we offer multiple experiences for kids at our open gymnastics at Lake City Twisters. The main gym is open to kids of all ages during our open gym times. We also have a “tots” gym upstairs, which is open to kids age 6 and younger. If you want your kids to enjoy all the fun and growth that comes with regular open gymnastics time, be sure to check out our open gym schedule at Lake City Twisters to find a time that works for you and your child and get signed up today.