GYMNASTICS FOR AUTISM (edited guest post from USGCOA)

Jayce Coach Gymfinity

This article is shared from the blog of the United States Gymnastics Club Owners Association (USGCOA). It was originally written to encourage club owners to offer a program in their gyms that allows for children with Autism to experience gymnastics. I did edit it from it’s original, removing the parts that applied to club owners specifically. I felt that the information was worthy of sharing with our families, friends, and fans. Gymfinity does offer a class every Saturday morning for children with special needs. We have had this program since Gymfinity started in 1999. We were then, and remain today, one of the few programs that offer a class for differently abled kids.

Read More

Life skills through Gymnastics

Gymfinity Wisconsin USA

If the sports program is right, the following landmarks will be developed by practical application in training and in competition or performance. Parents should see each of these displayed as the coach works with the athlete and the athlete participates with the team.  Year to year and season to season the athlete maturing in skill and character should be obvious.

Read More

Being lost with a borrowed compass

fear of a virus that statistically doesn’t have them high on the risk-o-meter.  I struggled with staying masked, for how long, which kids? I also thought about how I have kids I have been coaching for 2 years and I cannot remember what their faces look like. Then again, I worried that if we take masks off, that we will see kids by the dozens calling off due to the virus. I needed to stop. I needed to find my compass.

Read More

Keeping Kids Healthy and Bright

Gymfinity Roll on Beam

Gymnastics is the learning of new skills as the athlete develops into a gymnast. A somersault or roll on the floor develops into a handspring, develops into a front flip, develops into a twisting front flip etc. New pathways are created with every new layer of skill acquisition. This is markedly different than a sport like baseball, for example, where the basic skills are refined as the athlete progresses but no new skills are learned. Throwing catching, swinging and running are the same skills for a 5 year old in T ball as they are for an MLB player, albeit at a different level of performance. So again, gymnastics is at the top of the list for helping children develop. This time it’s their brains.

Read More

Gymfinity’s Secret Sauce

Gymfinity Maddy Lund Gymnastics

We have assembled the best teachers and coaches of any gym I have seen. It is quality in the head: being able to teach and educate kids, and in the heart; having a passion for teaching, learning, and impacting others that makes these very special coaches.

Read More

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.

Read More

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.

Read More

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.

Read More

How to live without fear: make the new year less scary

overcome fear

Sometimes it’s good to be afraid. Fear is an instinct that rears up when we perceive danger. There are some instances when being afraid can keep us alive. “Hey, go wrestle that alligator.” “No thank you, that scares me.”  When we perceive danger, Adrenalin is released, our heart rate increase, or senses are on edge,…

Read More