Tick Tock: The Gift of Time Management
by Michelle Kocan
In order to set positive examples for children and allow them the opportunity to work effectively, it is so important that parents realize the importance of bringing their children to practice on time...consistently. There will always be days when things come up, of course. But if you find your family is arriving late to practice more than 15-25% of the time, you should consider what your child is missing. You may be tempted to think, “It is only 5 or 10 minutes, how can that make a difference?” There are so many benefits to a consistent, timely practice. Here they are from a coach’s perspective:
When your child is late to class they miss important steps in the process. The warm-up is so vital. It not only prepares the body to work out, it is a time to prepare the mind as well. It’s an opportunity to get rid of whatever else went on during the day, focus on why they are at practice, and have the coaching staff focus on them. For children who arrive early, we sometime have fun challenges like rope climbs and press handstand contests. It makes it FUN to be early and they love being in the gym.
Often considered the “5th event” in artistic women’s gymnastics, sometimes I’ll start practice with a variety of conditioning drills. Being strong is so important for safety, ease of skill progression, success and physical ability. If an athlete misses any of this time, they can quickly fall behind and feel left out. Success is the ultimate goal of every coach and making a plan for strength, flexibility and skill development lays out a path to this success.