5 Simple Reasons Your Son Should Do Gymnastics (Even if He Doesn’t Want to Be a Gymnast)
Gymnastics is not just for girls.
Not even close.
Yes, the sport is considerably more popular among girls. But did you know that many regard male gymnasts as the strongest of all athletes?
In Men’s Health’s list of the 50 fittest athletes, it is a gymnast who is ranked third, ahead of sports stars like Michael Phelps, LeBron James and Usain Bolt. And, the magazine admits that the gymnast, Kohei Uchimora, “might be pound-for-pound the fittest guy on the planet.”
So that sounds like he should be ranked first to me…but I digress.
Even if your son has no desire to pursue gymnastics as a sport, there are still many benefits for boys to participate in gymnastics.
I know that might sound confusing: why would you have your child enroll in gymnastics if he had no interest in being a gymnast?
For these 5 simple reasons:
Gymnastics is the perfect foundational sport. There is no sport that teaches basic fundamental athletic skills better than gymnastics, especially for young kids who lack the motor and cognitive skills for team ball sports. In gymnastics class, your son will learn to run, jump, and balance, to develop his coordination and body awareness and to become stronger and more flexible. These basic athletics skills are then transferable to any sport he chooses to play when he gets older. Or, if he opts out of sports all together, he will have a foundation for fitness.
Gymnastics is the perfect cross training sport. If your son is already involved in another sports program, gymnastics is a perfect way to enhance his conditioning by building up his athleticism. By participating in gymnastics your son will become stronger, more flexible, more agile and have a better sense of where his body is in the air, all resulting in and overall improvement in his fitness and athleticism.
Gymnastics is the perfect injury prevention program. Two of the most common ways kids get injured in sports are from sprains or strained muscles and from falling. Gymnastics is useful in helping kids avoid sprains and strains because it teaches kids to warm up properly and it helps them increase their flexibility (two of the main reasons sprains and strains occur). Additionally, there is no better place to learn to fall than gymnastics! Part of any core curriculum in gymnastics is learning how to fall safely.
Gymnastics is the perfect character building sport. Coaches want athletes with a strong work ethic and who are resilient. Gymnastics is not an easy sport. It teaches kids that hard work is necessary for results and that trying over and over again is just part of the process. Discipline is a natural byproduct of doing gymnastics.
Gymnastics is the perfect sport to learn to be coachable. Gymnastics teaches kids to listen. Gymnasts receive corrections after each and every turn. So a gymnast might receive literally hundreds of pieces of feedback in one practice! Gymnasts learn to not take this feedback as criticism but rather as helpful information designed to improve their performance.
Gymnastics is NOT just for girls. Gymnastics is the foundation of ALL sports. Who knows? Maybe your son will “flip” for the sport and become a gymnast or maybe he will just get some solid building blocks to use in his future athletic endeavors. Either way, it is time well spent getting the recommended 60 minutes (or more) of physical activity per day they need, and they are not in front of a screen!
And it’s fun! Don’t believe me? Take a quick look at some of our boys in action, click here and here!
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Too true! My son is 8 and he does gymnastics because he enjoys it. He’s not interested in competing, but he loves getting badges. He gets so much from gymnastics, it compliments his Parkour training perfectly and helps him to sleep well and also improves his concentration at school.
There is so little available for boys though. If he had chosen to compete we would have been driving miles several times a week to access a good boys club. If you have a good boys club. Use it!
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Nice write up but that list of 50 fittest athletes is not worth the reference. It appears they’ve simply listed 50 people who’ve been extremely successful in their particular activity. It certainly does have any scientifically calculations. How a Golfer could make that list is beyond me.
Reblogged this on Bella Bounces and commented:
So I know I am guilty of neglect here, but I’ve recently discovered this great Gym blog and thought I’d share this post about Boys, Gymnastics and why gymnastics really should be a starting point for every child in sport. Because where else are you going to learn strength, balance, flexibility and control in one sport, as well as discipline, self-control strength of character, perseverance and focus? Hope you like this post as much as I did! Ttfn Bella x
How About Martial Arts. You ask were else can you find those characteristics the answer is inside any Martial Arts Academy. Not only do they learn all of what you just mentioned but in Martial Arts students learn self defense, how to be Bully Proof and much more plus most academy’s teach kicknastics which is a form of gymnastics except we combine the gymnastic techniques with amazing Kicks.
Absolutely! Martial arts ae terrific–it’s just that I run a gymnastics school, so that is the focus of my blog! But yes, many of these attributes would apply to martial arts for sure!
A great article! All points I have been trying to hammer home for all of my 38 years of coaching. Gymnasts and wrestlers are the strongest athletes pound for pound, and gymnastics gives you more of an all around workout! Thank you!
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My very small for his age, 14 yr. old boy, was doing very well in gymnastics. However, the place he took lessons from in Johnston, IA, forces boys to enter team gymnastics when they reach a certain level. For a number of reasons we are unable to get involved in team level gymnastics which involves travel, etc. He had to drop out of gymnastics altogether because they didn’t have any other male coaches that weren’t involved in team level gymnastics. This was extremely disappointing for him. They wouldn’t allow him to take the same lessons as team level students, but not be involved in competitions.
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