It’s tough sometimes during the end of the year to express love to our friends and family with material gifts as the season dictates. Often getting a child something from their wish list means giving them something that will end up under the bed in a week or, worse, consuming their attention by digitally entertaining their brains. But gifts that communicate your love as well as your values are always the best way to go, and in this post, you’re going to learn about a really great gift idea.
Helping children stay active and healthy in a world that makes sitting curled over an electronic device much more appealing (all the grown-ups do it) is difficult, but not impossible. If you begin with the belief that in order to live a long, healthy life one needs to be active on a daily basis, your battle is half won. The next step is to look for gifts that express this belief. And without question, tumbling mats are the way to go.
Tumbling mats are sort of like the gift that keeps on giving. First, they’re super-fun for the little ones to play on. They get used to the mats with play, which makes it easier to adapt to a tumbling or gymnastics class later. Because they come with hook and loop fasteners, you can connect more mats together if more space is needed as the child gets bigger and has more demanding practice needs. See? You’ve started with the toddler who needs a fun space to tumble, play, and roughhouse, and you’re already up to the teen who’s considering becoming an elite athlete. How’s that for “keeps on giving?”
True, some holiday gifts are just gifts. Not terribly meaningful, perhaps even disposable or consumable. But the gift of a tumbling mat for a child teaches them that an active lifestyle is something you value, something they should value as well. Sure you could just buy a gym membership and make them take tumbling classes, but having a mat at home communicates the seriousness of your intentions.
Just because they’re little doesn’t mean you want to skimp on quality. In fact, just the opposite is true. If they’re going to be throwing their little bodies around on these mats, they need to be thick, shock-absorbent, and made extremely well so they last longer than just the holiday season. Thick cores and heavy-duty vinyl coverings are a must. They should fold and be easily stored (this is the part of the gift that’s for you). There are lots of tumbling mats to choose from, so make sure you do your homework and choose the mat that’s going to be perfect for your space and your needs. Then get ready for lots of activity!