How Gymnastics Helps in Other Sports

"This sport taught me so much at such a young age. I learned that I should never give up on myself, how to be a good teammate, commitment, and so much more. I couldn't have done this without my parents and my coaches. I want to thank you all for never giving up on me and supporting me even though at times I wanted to give up. It got to the point where I needed to leave the best thing that has ever happened to me behind. There may be times when you want to quit, I get that. Put that leotard on and go get 10 on the bars, beam, vault, and floor. The long hours and hard work will be worth it when it comes to competition season, trust me." Shawn Johnson

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Gymnastics, when started early enough, provides a foundation for athletes that lasts throughout their sports careers-regardless of how long that may be.

Learning how the body reacts, performs, and adjusts to new and difficult challenges is a significant advantage of participating in gymnastics. Basic summersaults, cartwheels, and jumping routines incorporate muscle memory, discipline, and work ethic.

The average 2-6-year-old doesn't naturally do cartwheels perfectly. They see others doing it, start in stages, and eventually, with enough practice are able to slowly develop their skills to do a perfect cartwheel. This may sound obvious, but when we see children doing cartwheels we don't always think about the work it took leading up to that point.

Having a sense of how their body performs allows athletes of all ages and backgrounds to enjoy the activities they participate in throughout life so much more. For example, a student who learns gymnastics at an early age will see the benefits in their martial arts class when they're 10 years old simply because the movements in martial arts will come easier to them. The body control they learned as a toddler carries on with them for years and years after.

At the same time, those that have a foundation of gymnastics will also find themselves excelling in team sports more often as well. It takes them less time to learn certain sport-specific movements, how to coordinate difficult positions, and in many cases rise to the top of their team as a leader…simply because of their ability to control their body in a way that others recognize and want to mimic.

The challenges children face in gymnastics often lead to critical problem-solving skills and effective ways to handle adversity in sports later in life. There is nothing more frustrating than wanting to perform at a certain level and simply not having the ability as of yet. The work, discipline, and work ethic learned from early childhood gymnastics provide a foundation for sports like baseball, softball, basketball, tennis, cheerleading and countless others.

In fact, there is no sport that a child will participate in that gymnastics doesn't add significant value to.

With the right mindset, starting early, and keeping to a routine, basic gymnastics lessons can lead to children enjoying the physical activities they participate in for their entire lives. For those that want to live long and healthy lives, the foundation that gymnastics creates lends itself perfectly!

"Even if kids don't love gymnastics, if they start at any age with some classes, they can learn so many different things - they can build a lot of character, strength, flexibility, and courage. Hopefully, they can also develop a sense of fearlessness."
Nastia Liukin

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