One of the best ways to help the longevity and quality of your child’s gymnastics program is by contributing gymnastics equipment, like crash mats, tumbling mats, and gymnastics wedges. Clubs always need funds, but sometimes the funds they raise aren’t enough to buy top-quality equipment. You don’t want your child’s safety at risk, so you’re best bet is to help the program by providing competition-quality equipment.
Most people think of crash mats as the big pillow thing underneath the bars. That’s true, but crash pads also play the safety role in helping gymnasts learn the beam and vault. Your child won’t have that luxury during competition, but during the time they’re learning the basic skills to master these apparatus, safety is paramount. And having the right amount of cushioning for the skill being learned and practiced is as important as having proper instruction. Crash mats come in varying thicknesses and solidity. For practice where it’s very likely a fall will occur, the 12″ crash pads provide tons of safe, well-constructed cushioning. As you need less and less padding you can reduce the thickness of the mat. Which does your child’s gym need most?
Tumbling mats are by far the easiest piece of gymnastics equipment to afford, transport, and store. And they are used for everything! Brand new tumblers learn basic rolls, balance, and control on tumbling mats, while older and more experienced gymnasts use them for floor routine practice and mastering difficult skills. The tumbling mats are so versatile, you could even pack them up and take them to a competition or bring them home with you to extend your child’s practice.
Incline mats, also known as gymnastic wedges, or “cheese mats”, are probably the most fun piece of equipment you can buy, and yet they are intrinsically valuable to both beginners and advanced gymnasts. Beginners use the incline to learn things as simple as forward rolls, yet with guidance the gymnastics wedge can also help them learn motor control. With a larger gymnastics wedge, more advanced gymnasts or cheer squads can practice back handsprings and other skills that require safety in learning.
You’ll be the team mascot if you show up to practice one day with a gift of a tumbling mat, a gymnastics wedge, or some crash pads. While you’re in the gift-giving mood, don’t forget about your child’s life at the gym.