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“Maybe if I enroll them in gymnastics, it will wear them out”.
And, so it begins. The journey of satiating a bouncy, flippy, rolling, flopping preschooler who jumps on the bed, the couch, her brother all day long. Fast forward a few years and parents find themselves carpooling 4-5 days a week to the gym with the same flippy kiddo (now, her toes are more pointy), but somehow even after 4 hours of practice, she’s still jumping on the bed.
Move over coffee table...it’s time to get this kiddo a home training bar.
Parents ask us questions all the time about how to safely play at home on gymnastics equipment. It's reasonable to be concerned as we appreciate how skilled coaches need to be to do their job. Here are some common questions about using a training bar at home:
What makes gymnastics equipment safe for use at home? In particular Tumbl Trak training bars.
Tumbl Trak has a quality standard that is based on the needs of any bustling gymnastics gym that has thousands of athletes in their program. We make our products from the best quality materials available to us. Sturdy, heavy steel construction with high-grade fasteners keep our bar stable when used by even the most aggressive users. We designed our rounded rails to protect athletes from injury. Take note as well, that our matting suggestions for home use are of the highest protective standard, covering the entire footprint below the bar with ample protection.
Our company is founded on some basic principles, including the value of education. We are unique in this effort to offer suggestions in safe training and proper guidelines in-home use training on our NEW “Homenastics” video series, Webpage, YouTube Channel and SM outlets. Here’s an example of a newsletter article suggesting safe home use of equipment: Link HERE
A lot of high profile figures in the gymnastics coaching community are against the use of gymnastics equipment at home. Why do you think that gymnasts should use equipment to practice gymnastics at home?
There are valid concerns regarding using gymnastics equipment at home. Our staff at Tumbl Trak has made great efforts to first, comprehend the scope of home gymnastics practice already happening, and second, use a myriad of resources to provide the best information we are able to guide families and athletes as to the best practices.
All would agree that youth sports are exciting and developmentally beneficial to children. A passionate athlete does not leave their love of the sport on the field or in the gym. Naturally, they want to “keep at it” - wherever they are! A soccer player can be seen kicking goals in the backyard, a basketball player may dribble through the house and similarly, a gymnast/cheerleader/tumbler/martial artist wants to be upside-down...all the time!
Our philosophy of home use equipment includes the idea that doing gymnastics at home helps to Foster the Love of the Sport. Here are some ways how:
An under confident athlete can use home equipment to practice skills and lead up drills comfortably, at their own pace, which better prepares them for the next time they are called upon in class. Example: A Tumbl Trak Addie Beam or Sectional Beam is a great tool for a nervous athlete to use at home for “play”. More exposure playing on the beam builds a natural confidence.
An athlete that takes a 60-minute class, once a week and needs improvement in one particular area can do “Gym Homework” to improve that area. Example: A tumbling mat, or Handstand Homework Door Mat will help an athlete to improve handstands - a cornerstone skill that all other skills develop from. The Handstand Homework Mat comes with a 60 page instructional booklet, geared toward athletes and comprised of skills and tips from the top coaches in the nation.
An injured athlete may be able to continue work in areas that be improved and keep their spirits up. Example: An athlete with an ankle injury can use Tumbl Trak Sliders, or Portable Parallettes to keep up with core conditioning and upper body strength at home.
“They are doing it anyway”. Kids are bouncing on the bed, flipping off couches and walking on their hands at home and in the backyard, regardless of having equipment. Having a piece of equipment at home can help families hone in on gymnastics play and practice in a safe, designated place in the home. Example: Athletes instinctively will do bridges and kickovers off of a couch - and coffee tables, lamps, siblings are obstacles of concern. If an athlete has a Tumbl Trak Incline, there is a designated, well designed piece of equipment for the athlete to do their skills on, and because it’s a piece similar to those practiced on in a gym, the likelihood of good habits and focus is greater!
Are there any gymnastics bar skills you would advise gymnasts against practicing on your home gymnastics bars?
Gymnasts should do skills (bars or otherwise), that they can do CONSISTENTLY and SAFELY in the gym, without a spot or training aid. If the gymnast is not able to perform the skill consistently, then they should opt to do lead up drills, shaping drills or conditioning exercises that will help them work toward the skill(s) they desire.
Check out our full line of home use training bars, beams, mats and more at tumbltrak.com.