Aside from being a fun way to let out extra energy that children have, offering gymnastics classes at an early age is a great way to build important life skills. Preschool gymnastics programs are appealing to parents because these classes help young children and toddlers work on physical skills such as strength, coordination, balance, and flexibility while also assisting with listening, following directions, working towards a goal, and building confidence.
To ensure fun and exciting classes for your preschool gymnastics program, here are 10 must-haves for every gym!
10 must-haves for great preschool gymnastics classes
1. Safety Equipment
First things first – basic safety equipment. We know some children have no fear so having mats and discussing the importance of staying on the mats is a must. Give safety a fun spin with a foam pit to work on basic jumps, showing that the foam pit is not only fun but helps with a smooth and harmless landing.
2. Floor Balance beam
Floor balance beams are a great way to start working on simple coordination, as well as strength and posture. Since these balance beams sit on the floor, it’s a great way to help young gymnasts with balance and confidence before progressing to a raised beam.
3. Stepping stones
Using stepping stones is a creative way to get your preschool gymnasts moving around and burning off energy. With the stones, they can stretch, hop, jump or step to the next stone all while working on their balance and coordination.
Take it a step further and get a colorful set of stepping stones to work on color recognition at the same time!
4. Foamnasium equipment
With foam shapes in many sizes, you can create a jungle gym or obstacle course for your preschool class to practice climbing, jumping, and crawling through on a safe, easy-to-clean, durable surface. This one is definitely a fan favorite!
5. Trampoline with handrail
Jumping is fun! But, it’s also a skill for young gymnasts to learn and work on. With a mini trampoline fully equipped with a handrail, your preschool class can work on jumping in a safe way that prevents falling. There’s no doubt your preschool students are going to have a blast with this one!
6. Short Kip Bar
Aside from being amusing, short kip bars (or gymnastics bars) are a great way to work on upper body strength for young gymnasts. From swinging on the bar to ‘bat hangs’ (both hands and feet on the bar), your tiny tumblers will be able to build strength while having fun.
7. Pop-up Tunnel
No obstacle course is complete without a tunnel! As you move from one apparatus to the next, you can add a pop-up tunnel (or three) for transitions to make a fun game out of it. At the same time, preschool-aged gymnasts are building their gross motor skills while crawling and using bilateral coordination while moving arms and legs.
8. The Original Block
The Original Block has many uses for gymnasts of all ages, but it’s especially beneficial for preschoolers when teaching cartwheel basics. By adding a little height to the ground and showing where to place your hands, small gymnasts are able to land on their feet much easier.
9. Miniature Vault Table [h3]
With all of the other skills you are building in your preschool gymnastics class, it’s a great time to introduce the vault by breaking this up into tiny goals and skills to master. With a smaller, softer vault you can focus on the basics like running, getting on to the table, jumping off the table, and the landing or a big ‘tada’!
Springboards are another great way to practice jumping and landing. Whether used in conjunction with other equipment or on its own, your little gymnasts are working on their motor skills and coordination.
There’s no right or wrong equipment for your preschool gymnastics program but we know the more fun you make it, the more excited your preschool students will be week to week. Get creative, make it fun and teach important developmental skills and the parents will be your biggest fans!
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