The Gifts Gymnastics Brings

Gymnasts on the beam at Gymfinity

I love gymnastics and feel that it is the best developmental tool a child can experience. Gymnasts are not only stronger, but smarter, and justifiably feel better about themselves. These are all skills that they can carry with them through life ensuring success and happiness along the way. 41 years ago, when I started teaching gymnastics, I did it because it was fun. As time went on I was shown time and again the benefits that I wrote about above. I saw the kids I coach become doctors, lawyers, mothers, politicians, engineers, counselors, teachers and more. Every one happy, Every one a success. And every day since my decision to teach gymnastics back in 1980, my mission has been validated.

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How did I ever get here?

J Orkowski's High School Gymnastics Team

I look at those formative years and recall some of my role models. Most of them would not even recognize me if I walked up and shook their hand. If they did, it would be as Harry’s little brother, the quiet nerdy kid who was either reading or standing on his hands.
I was thinking the other day, how so many of the people who influence us in life rarely ever realize the impact they had. I wouldn’t even know if they were aware of me let alone know that after 40+ years, I am still in the sport.

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Gymnastics & Trampoline makes kids smarter. Fact.

Gymfinity Smarts

Einstein is (mistakenly?) credited with saying “if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” I think that he is really on to something. Not everyone is the same and so it makes no sense to use a standardized measure for intelligence.

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Gymfinity and Covid-19

Some children’s activity centers might not take the issue of keeping the facility clean for the children as seriously as we do. So, what is Gymfinity doing to keep everyone healthy? Aside from posting accurate information here regarding infectious diseases that we all hear about in the press:
Instructors wash their hands before and after each class.  Common areas are cleaned and disinfected regularly (including handles, doors, counters, etc). Gymfinity has a cleaning service for the lobby and common areas. These areas are cleaned every day. Equipment in the gym is cleaned and disinfected regularly. We have a secret weapon and his name is Nathan. Nathan has been with Gymfinity for over 13 years and comes in 4 days a week to clean and sanitize mats and surface areas in then gym. He is very detail oriented. We utilize a chemical cleaning compound called Zone Defense that wipes out 99% of all the items on the Haz-Mat scale. This treatment is safe to humans as it is released overnight, and completely harmless by morning. Our staff is instructed to STAY HOME if they (or someone in their family) is ill. You may notice some substitute teachers, this may be the reason.

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What I learned from a dog named Kumo

Staying Positive with Kumo

I have always believed that we have to accept life as a game. Accepting whatever happens as a challenge. If we can overcome it, we win a point. I think every person can handle more than they ever thought they could. Because, just like a game, when the challenges just keep coming, we become better players.

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Help me understand kids in this digital age

Gymfinity Baby Laptop

I am at a loss. I think I struggle with something that we are all facing, and I would love input on ideas that work for you and your family. I’m talking about our kids being held captive by their electronics.
All electronics have negative side-effects. For all of the functionality the provide, they also provide dysfunction in the form of distraction and a place to hide from reality. For all of the information they can give to us, they also allow access to the largest collection of stupidity ever assembled, I’m looking at you YouTube.

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“Selling” what we do as gymnastics coaches

Gymnastics Gymfinity Coach J Orkowski

I believe that everything I have in my life is because my big brother Harold introduced me to gymnastics. I went to college, started coaching, started a business, grew a nationally competitive team, built a top-notch staff, met a great woman and had great children: all because of gymnastics.

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Teaching kids to be Un-Fragile

I feel that children need to experience a few bumps in the road. Without them the child doesn’t develop any ability to self-regulate or cope. Much like the absence of gravity and how it causes the loss of muscle in astronauts; the lack of challenge can make children weak. It certainly doesn’t prepare them for adult life.

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