So you have enrolled your child for gymnastics classes as you have already heard of how gymnastics can help in his/her overall development. They have already grown fond of the sport and now you are thinking if it is the right time or the right decision to go one step forward towards competitive gymnastics. However, you will have a lot of questions like, How to start? How much training is required for that? Does my child have it in her to compete? Let us understand how competitive gymnastics work and what it takes.
Competitive gymnastics is a lot different from recreational one as the later one is just the beginner stage where your child has just started or the seasoned gymnasts who train without any pressure of competition. It creates a foundation of physical and mental skills which helps them later on in life, with any other sport or in general.
Competitive gymnastics on the other hand, requires a much greater level of dedication in terms of time, money and har work. There are dedicated training programs you must adhere to and have coaches to guide the achieve their expectations.
Let us see what are the factors which need to be considered for both of them.
- Training hours
Recreational gymnastics classes takes place once or twice a week for one or two hours at max and are mainly focussed on fun and overall experience. They are not very physically intensive but focus more on gradual skill progression. Children learn new things and achieve their set goals at their own pace, there is no pressure of completing a skill set in a particular time period.
Competitive gymnasts have a more strict schedule. They train for 8 to almost 20 hours a week depending on which level they are in. Skipping training sessions is not an option here unless there is a strong valid reason and the coaches expect a very high commitment and a fast paced progression.
- Dedication level
One must have that commitment level to be able to juggle both gymnastics training sessions and outside gym activities like homework or studying for exams. One will have to spend more time in the gym, during term breaks and in between school. A lot of sacrifice needs to be made and specially if your child is on a higher competitive level, they might also have to sacrifice their social lives.
Recreational gymnastics have much lower expectations in terms of dedication. The focus is more on keeping the child active and fit, rather than winning a competition. He or she can balance school, gym and personal life easily and still get all the benefits that gymnastics has to offer.
- Health and fitness
Competitive gymnasts have a maintain a very strict healthy diet in order for them to keep up with their energy to be able to train for longer duration. A plenty of rest is also required for the body to relax and get ready for the next session.
For recreational gymnasts, maintaining a healthy lifestyle is still important for them to be able to perform the skills efficiently, however they is no hard and fast rule on diet.
- Parental Support
For competitive gymnastics specially, a lot of support is needed from their parents in order for them to be able to manage the sport along with their school and personal life. As much as 80% of your child’s achievement depends on his dedication and hard work, the rest 20% depends on your support. If you are ready and able to give the time to support your child in this sport, you can think about it further.
Nova Gymnastics is a competitive gymnastics center in Davie which offers all kinds of gymnastics classes for children as well as adults. We also offer counseling to help you decide what will suit you or your child better. Call us at (954) 476-3154 to speak with an expert today!