For Parents some starting up advice

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kev152

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I was hoping maybe someone can help me with some general questions about gymnastics.

Our Amy wants to get into gymnastics, I have no idea about much about the sport, which is why I came to this forum (I have never even seen it on tv.) I have a lot of worries that i'm not sure I can get over.

My first question is, can someone tell me how dangerous it can be? I mean especially if we get her going it in and she sticks with it for a few years, when you start with the more dangerous tricks is it very dangerous?
 
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bogwoppit

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Feb 26, 2007
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In the US, out of all sports, it is the 44th most dangerous sport. As in more kids go to the emergency room for 43 other sports than for gymnastics. Gymastics has good coaching and therefore is safer than most sports.

Gym will keep her fit and strong, it will teach her discipline and team spirit. It will give her life long friends and strong adult role models, and most of all gymnastics is a ton of fun.
 
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cher062

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I was hoping maybe someone can help me with some general questions about gymnastics.

Our Amy wants to get into gymnastics, I have no idea about much about the sport, which is why I came to this forum (I have never even seen it on tv.) I have a lot of worries that i'm not sure I can get over.

My first question is, can someone tell me how dangerous it can be? I mean especially if we get her going it in and she sticks with it for a few years, when you start with the more dangerous tricks is it very dangerous?
Well the danger factor I think its no more or less safe than any other sport kids do out there. All sports have their dangers and benifits. Some more than others.

When you start out you Daughter will most likely be in a recreational calss which I can say in the 14 years I've been the mom watching my kids I've never seen any rec kids injured that a simple ice pack or a bandaid wouldn't fix. You really have nothing to worry about at the rec level. And most gyms I've seen have some serious safty rules the kids must follow.

If and when your DD gets really involved and is choosen for a team well there is alot of conditioning that gets done so the kids are prepared to do the harder skills. again in the 14 years i've been an observing mom the ambulance has only come once and it was more of a precaution the girl landed on her back from the bars close to her neck and she complained it hurt so a trip to the hospital and an exray later she had a sprain.

the most common injuries I have seen are always with the team kids as they are there 3 - 4 days a week 3 - 4 hour a day. I see rug burns, sprains, rips, some blisters as a regular thing. Then you might see some overuse tendons and growth plate issues both fixed with a brace or removable cast for a short time. The only broken bones I've seen the gymnast have were done out side of the gym at something else.
 

Tumblequeensmom

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Feb 19, 2007
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Cher is 100% correct in her analysis of the sport! My DD has been involved with gymnastics for about 5 years and has been on the team for 4. All of her injuries that have impacted her gymnastics training have been accidents outside of formal gym training! Her broken collarbone was the result of doing "tricks" in the basement... her ankle sprain (the longest lasting injury she's haad) was the result of goofing off w/a friend during an open gym and stepping off of a spotting block the wrong way!

Good coaches won't let her try skills until SHE is ready to try them. They use progressive exercises to build up to the skill. She will not be put on a high beam and told "o.k. go do a backhandspring!"

Gymnastics is a great way for any girl to stay in shape, learn dedication/discipline and develope some great friendships among her teammates!
 

gym law mom

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Dec 23, 2006
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Can she get hurt doing gymnastics? Sure. Can she get hurt playing soccer, doing dance, playing with friends? Sure. Yes, the chance of injury does go up when a child is active and involved in sports. Of course, I've seen kids with fractures from tripping on the steps at home.

If she is just starting then the most important thing to do is find a gym where you feel comfortable with the coaching and dd is learning and having a good time. Hopefully, you have more than 1 gym to pick from. Ask other parents who have children in gymnastics for recommendations. Usually gyms will offer a free trial class and thats a great way to see if the gym is a good fit for the family. Don't feel obligated to pull out the credit card and sign her up for classes on the spot. Its fine to go home and think about it. Gyms really make their money off the rec classes, so there will always be openings in them. Also at the trial class is a great time to ask questions about what is taught, coach to student ratio, safety issues etc.

You'll find that when she starts out most of the work is done on the floor teaching positions, very basic tumbling, learning to walk on a beam that is wide and lays on the floor with a little intro to bars thrown in. Take it one class at a time and watch her enjoy it.
 

Gymdad2

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Jul 11, 2008
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Welcome to Chalkbucket and welcome to the world of gymnastics. I fully agree with the others that the possibility of injury is not greater in beginning gymnastics than in any other beginning sport. The probability does go up as gymnastics skills become more difficult, but this really only applies to those who join the competative team and adavance to the higher levels. IMO the advantages mentioned above far outweigh any possible injuries. DD has had several injuries over the years, but she just recently competed at L9 Eastern Nationals (2nd bars, 5th Vault) and the physical fitness, the self confidence and the experience of being part of a team and getting to travel around the county has more than compensated for the physical problems. (We have been to Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Maryland, South Carolina, Florida, Mississippi, Arizona and California over years.) I would reccommend the sport to all who are interested.
 
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cathiann

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Welcome to Chalkbucket and welcome to the world of gymnastics. I fully agree with the others that the possibility of injury is not greater in beginning gymnastics than in any other beginning sport. The probability does go up as gymnastics skills become more difficult, but this really only applies to those who join the competative team and adavance to the higher levels. IMO the advantages mentioned above far outweigh any possible injuries. DD has had several injuries over the years, but she just recently competed at L9 Eastern Nationals (2nd bars, 5th Vault) and the physical fitness, the self confidence and the experience of being part of a team and getting to travel around the county has more than compensated for the physical problems. (We have been to Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Maryland, South Carolina, Florida, Mississippi, Arizona and California over years.) I would reccommend the sport to all who are interested.
Couldn't agree more with what gymdad and everyone else has posted. Risk of injury increases in ANY sports as you put more hours in--gymnastics is no worse than others. Unless you have a very poor coach, your daughter won't be working skills that she can't handle. It's a gradual progression. Look around--test out a few gyms and see which you like. We lucked out--when my oldest DD starts at 3 yr old, we just went to the closest gym and we've been there ever since! Some ups and downs, but overall we love it.
 
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