Can gymnastics help with PLAY? Yes!

PLAYing is important for child development. So important, that it has been recognized by the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights as a right of every child. (1)

It seems simple enough, children go out and PLAY. How can gymnastics make that better?

Children playing outside

Tag: you’re it!

Think about a great game of tag. Children trying to evade “IT” by jumping over logs, landing without falling, dodging, deking, manipulating run speed, swinging from a tree branch and even climbing a tree(!) are all skills improved by taking a gymnastics class!

Fundamental movement skills

Just like teachers are trained to teach academic skills, gymnastics coaches are trained to teach the fundamental movement skills.  The skills are taught in a safe, fun, and supportive environment, with qualified and experienced coaches.

Not only will your child’s physical literacy improve; teamwork, problem-solving and communication skills are also taught. Plus recreational gymnastics classes give children the perfect opportunity to develop and use their imaginations!

Mastering these skills are a huge confidence booster and encourage children to PLAY even more!

Beyond PLAY

And PLAYing more has its benefits! According to Participaction “science has shown that when children increase their daily physical activity, they decrease their chances of developing many diseases such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes and are generally healthier and happier.” (2)

Not enough PLAY

Sadly “63% of Canadian kids’ free time after school and on weekends is spent being sedentary. We need to get our kids moving…” (3). And summer is the perfect opportunity to and get outside to PLAY and start a new habit of being active.

There are many benefits of organized activities (like gymnastics classes). At the same time, kids need time to just PLAY. This lets them master the skills they’ve learned. Plus kids (and adults too!) need time to relax, be outside, and enjoy the games and activities that come with sunny weather and fresh lemonade!

All kinds of PLAY

Having a solid foundation of fundamental movement skills isn’t limited to helping your child be better at just TAG. It will help with all your favourite neighbourhood summer games such as hide and seek, red rover, hopscotch, dodgeball and capture the flag! As ParticipACTION puts it ‘Bring Back PLAY!’

Check out your local PLAY Gymnastics BC club for more details. Enrolling your child in a gymnastics class is the first step that will lead to your child become more confident and willing to get outside and PLAY on their own!

References

The Importance of Play in Promoting Healthy Child Development and Maintaining Strong Parent-Child Bonds. Kenneth R. Ginsburg, MD, MSEd, and the Committee on Communications,and the Committee on Psychosocial Aspects of Child and Family Health. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/119/1/182.full

ParticipAction. http://www.participaction.com/get-moving/bring-back-play/

ParticipAction. http://www.participaction.com/get-moving/benefits-of-physical-activity/

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May 24 to 26, 2019

2019 BC Gymnaestrada, Victoria

Hosted by: PLAY Gymnastics BC and Lion’s Pride Gymnastics Academy Contact: Keara Urquhart, kurquhart@gymbc.org, 604-333-3494

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