ALL children benefit from classes and participation in gymnastics. Click here for a small sampling of the actual benefits from gymnastics. You have done a terrific job of parenting by getting your child interested in this educational sport. Many of the benefits of gymnastics are NOT related to learning gymnastic skills, but more important developmental areas that will help your child become a better student and young adult. Gymnastic programs are not solely about creating gymnasts. ALL children, regardless of ability, should participate in gymnastics for between 3-5 years to get the full benefit of what gymnastics offers.
The following chart can act as a treasure map, illustrating the fundamental relationship between gymnastics and academic goals. The right side of the chart lists activities common to gymnastics, while the left side shows the link to academic skills and school success. The more a child tumbles, climbs, creeps, and crawls, the more densely wired the brain becomes for academic success. Movement is the architect of a child’s brain. The two hemispheres of the brain are designed to constantly communicate with one another. The left side of the brain controls the right side of the body, and vice versa. Bilateral activities, common to all gymnastic programs, require both sides of the body to work together and separately. Coordinated movement patterns create fluent readers who complete reading tasks with ease. For example, during reading, the left hemisphere attends to letters and the sequence of words, while the right side of the brain focuses on comprehending what is read. Reading fluency depends on an intimate conversation between the two hemispheres of the brain-a clear signal.