Our “Special Education” Gymnastics Program is a great opportunity for parents or caretakers to participate with their special needs child. This program is fun and taught according to the children’s abilities.
“Special Needs is a wonderful benefit for everyone. Not only is gymnastics great for kids but when a child with special needs does gymnastics, you can multiply the benefits by 100! By using gymnastics to benefit children with special needs it helps in many areas besides what is common knowledge. Gymnastics also helps with their speech by working their core, their confidence, self-esteem, etc.
“We have a student with Downs Syndrome who was taking gymnastics classes at our gym. We started a Special Olympics program in our gym. After her first meet and winning gold all around, I asked her mother what daughter said about winning. Her mother said that her daughter didn’t really say anything. It was foreign to her. She had never won anything. She was always the one trying to keep up. The subject of winning was never discussed. Today, she loves to talk about winning gold. She will decline to jump on the trampoline if it means more time to work on the bars.
“We have had children come into our class who can’t run, jump, walk on a beam, hang on a bar, even after years of therapy. We start working on those things first and they become a different child. Within a short time they are walking across the flloor beam and then the high beam and jumping down by themselves, running laps around the floor, talking more and clearer, dressing themselves and even initiate conversation!
“Having people with special needs in our program also benefits all those that are working with them. We have older siblings that volunteer and want to make sure that they can help them in class. What type of people are those girls going to grow up to be? It is really a great benefit for those that want to work with special needs in their gymnastics community.