Tips for Gymnastic Parents
If your child is engaged in gymnastics then you are in for an exciting ride. There are some great things that you can do to help encourage your child to have the best overall experience possible. Enjoy the ability to sit back and watch your child develop into a beautiful gymnast right before your eyes. It is vital that you keep an open mind and allow your little gymnast to see that you are open-minded. If a child thinks that they are unable to do something then mentally that idea will hold them back. You should ensure that you help your child stay as open minded as possible too.
Ensure that your child is on time for meets and even practice. Nobody wants to always be late, especially when it is not their fault that they are late. Work with your child to ensure that they are always on time. Push your child to think of gymnastics as fun first before anything else. Many parents get so lost in the idea of pushing a child into sports and competition that they forget sports are supposed to be fun.
Your child should never feel that participating in gymnastics is a chore for them. Make sure you give your little gymnasts plenty of attention and feedback. If they did a move that was impressive be sure to tell them! Especially at the lower levels, gymnasts do not always realize when they are doing well and cannot understand easily that the coach cannot always see everything they do. Without some encouragement, your child could be quickly discouraged. Show your child that you are interested in their activities. This means watching a few practices, showing up, cheering your child on during the meets, and giving them general support. If they feel that, you hate their activities they are less likely to put a huge effort into it. Learn and understand the terminology associated with gymnastics. This will show your child that you are committed to helping them achieve the best results and that you believe they can really do it. If you have no interest in them staying in gymnastics then this is usually unnecessary.
Make sure that you are communicating with your child’s coach so that you are aware of the progress they have made. This is a great way to know exactly how your child is doing, what they need additional help with, and how they are meeting the goals that the coach has set for them. In addition, this allows you to discuss how your child is doing in the goals that they have set for themselves. Volunteer to help at meets for your child. This will allow you to see first hand what they do, as well as provide your child with ultimate support when they need it. Even if you cannot make each and every meet, helping your child at least occasionally is a great way to bond. Ensure that you are working towards keeping your child firmly involved in activities other than simply gymnastics so that they do not experience burnout. While gymnastics is great, too much gymnastics can drag your child down if they never receive a break from it. Work with your child to understand that only three medals are awarded for each event during meets. This means that no matter how many gymnasts are in attendance very few will receive medals.
Many children and parents alike feel that a meet was a failure unless they win at least one medal. Avoid this attitude with your child, and work to discourage it so that your child has realistic expectations. Keeping these ideals and suggestions in mind as the parent of a gymnast will allow you to work together with your child’s coach and ensure they are getting the most from their gymnastics experience possible. Without a conscious approach towards the behavior of parents, it is quite easy to sometimes allow gymnastics to dominate your life. Keeping your child focused on what is important is a good step towards the right direction to be successful in gymnastics. PPPPP (word count 680) .