When young children are learning something new, it is very common they may have some apprehension. In some cases, they may be terrified. This is a natural occurance and a situation that should be dealt with delicately.
Learning gymnastics and tumbling skills are certainly exciting for most students who participate. However, there are elements that can be scary, especially for young children. Many of the skills require the student to go upside down, and for some, this can be a very scary experience.
Even skills as basic as the forward and back roll can be challenging for some students. So how does a coach deal with these situations? There may be certain tools in the gym that can be used to help the student become more comfortable. These may include a wedge mat, panel mats, or other items that assist the athlete in motion. In addition, the coach should be active in spotting the student to help them with confidence and reduce the fear emotion.
Most importantly, the child should never be forced to do a skill they are terrified of performing. I have seen students who just cannot duck their head under for the forward roll or feel comfortable with flipping backward on a back roll. Since these are unnatural motions, some have developed such an extreme fear that it prevents them of accomplishing the skill – at least for an extended period of time.
Through consistent drill training, students usually gain the confidence needed to accomplish the desired skill. Drills as simple as the rock n’ roll and the ” donkey kicks” on floor help students in understanding tumbling motions. These baby steps are beneficial in development.
For the safety, enjoyment, and productive development of teaching gymnastics and tumbling skills, approach the training in a positive and stress free environment. You could be training a future champion!!
My new Beginner Tumbling Training Guide is published and ready for all to use. This is a great training aid for any and all programs who offer tumbling training. If you would like to order your copy, follow this link:
In addition, if you would like a personal training session or consultation with me, we can Skype a lesson. Email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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