Is Tumbling The Same As Gymnastics?
Gymnastics or tumbling classes might be a good idea for children who enjoy activities like climbing, jumping, and rolling. You may have heard both terms and wondered what the difference is between gymnastics and tumbling.
In this article, we will go over each of these sports and help determine whether tumbling or gymnastics is the right sport for your child.
What Are Gymnastics?
Gymnastics is a sport that has many disciplines, including tumbling. Gymnasts perform flips, handstands, turns, and other movements requiring coordination, endurance, flexibility, and strength. Many disciplines of gymnastics involve the use of equipment such as balance beams, high bars, parallel bars, rings, and uneven bars.
There are several events in artistic gymnastics, including:
- Balance beam (females only)
- Floor (males and females)
- Horizontal bar (males only)
- Parallel bars (males only)
- Pommel horse (males only)
- Still rings (males only)
- Uneven bars (females only)
- Vault (females and males)
In addition to tumbling and artistic gymnastics, other disciplines of gymnastics include acrobatic gymnastics, aerobic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, and trampolining.
How Can Gymnastics Benefit Children?
There are several ways that taking gymnastics or tumbling classes can benefit your child. Gymnastics and tumbling can help your child develop and strengthen physical, mental, and social abilities.
Gymnastics and tumbling classes will help your child develop social skills and friendships by communicating with their coaches and other athletes.
The complex movement patterns will help them improve their physical coordination, flexibility, and bone and muscle strength.
Tumbling and other types of gymnastics will also strengthen your child’s confidence, self-esteem, and work ethic as they improve through practice and work towards and achieve their goals.
What Is Tumbling?
Tumbling is a type of gymnastics that involves performing acrobatic movements like flips, jumps, and whips on a spring floor.
Unlike other forms of gymnastics, tumbling does not require any special equipment. However, because there is no equipment to launch or boost from, more explosive strength is needed for tumbling than other types.
You can think of tumbling as a specialty or focus of gymnastics. Think of the difference between a heart surgeon and your general doctor. They both went to medical school and completed a residency program to become doctors, but the general doctor specialized in general medicine, while the heart surgeon focused on cardiology and went through more specific training to develop their specialty.
Similarly, if your child wants to do tumbling, they will need to learn the basics of general gymnastics first before they can shift their focus to tumbling. In general gymnastics, they will develop fundamental skills like coordination, flexibility, and strength. All these skills will transfer into their tumbling training, and tumbling will focus more on developing explosive strength.
Choosing Between Gymnastics And Tumbling
Now that you understand the differences between tumbling and general gymnastics, there are a few things to take into consideration when choosing which of the two sports is right for your child.
Firstly, you should consider your child’s age. Gymnastics can be suitable for toddlers, but kids are usually five or six years old when they start tumbling. At some gyms, minimum age requirements will determine the type of classes your child can take.
Secondly, consider whether your child has any gymnastics experience. There is no experience needed for your child to begin learning gymnastics. However, as we noted previously, your child will need to have some gymnastics experience before they can go into tumbling. If your child is interested in tumbling, start with basic gymnastics first so they can work up to the skills required for tumbling in the future.
Also, consider your child’s goals and interests. As we discussed, there are many types of gymnastics for your child to pursue. It is not a good idea to push your child into tumbling if they are more interested in artistic gymnastics or vice versa. But if your child is interested in tumbling after taking gymnastics, it may be a good idea for them to switch disciplines.
Something else to keep in mind is that even if your child is not particularly interested in pursuing gymnastics in the long term and is instead interested in other sports, gymnastics can still be useful.
Signing your child up for gymnastics can be an important first step in their athletic future, regardless of whether they choose to continue in gymnastics, specialize in tumbling, or another sport such as football, soccer, or volleyball. But remember that even if your child decides not to participate in sports the confidence, self-esteem, social skills, work ethic, and physical skills they develop from gymnastics will continue to benefit them outside of sports as well.
Tumbling Classes At All Sports Kids
If you live in Tamarac, Sunrise, Coral Springs, Plantation, or Lauderhill, Florida, you can sign your child up for tumbling classes at All Sports Kids in Tamarac.
We also offer fun activities and camps after school, during winter break, spring break, and summer vacation, and events on Saturday nights.
We can even host your child’s birthday party! Call us at 954-746-5437 to learn more about everything available at All Sports Kids.