These days, the hottest sport for young kids is gymnastics and the demand for gymnastics instructors and safe gymnastics flooring has never been higher. Successful Olympic athletes like Shawn Johnson and Gabby Douglas have made the sport’s popularity skyrocket. Today, more children between the ages of 6-12 participate in gymnastics than any other sport and more gymnastics mats are sold now than at any point in history.
Interestingly, gymnastics itself is not new. According to “Nike is a Goddess: The History of Women in Sports,” rhythmic gymnastics was not officially recognized as a sport until 1962 and not considered a part of the Olympic Games until 1984. However, the sport dates back to at least 1904 when some elements of women’s gymnastics debuted at the Olympics. The athletes wore long skirts and high collars and used props, including clubs, canes, wands, ropes, and barbells in their group exercises. Gymnastics mats and octagons as we know them did not exist and athletes took safety risks that would stun today’s parents.
However, because of advanced technology in safety equipment, athletes are able to perform moves that earlier competitors would be awed by. (The leotard would probably cause a few gapes as well.) Learning the complicated gymnastics moves of our day requires dedication and a solid instructor as well as the right safety equipment. Being sure that you have the right gymnastics flooring for the job is critical for today’s instructor.
Our Gymnastics Octagon is a perfect example of equipment that can assist an instructor in teaching the art to young students. It can be used to develop coordination and balance as well as basic moves such as walkovers and handsprings. The octagonal shape keeps the mat from rolling around. This provides stability and builds confidence in athletes who are working on range of motion, flexibility, and balance. They are great for teaching dive rolls as well.
Contact Greatmats at http://www.greatmats.com – 877-822-6622.