Learn the History of Gymnastics

Gymnastics has a long history that dates back to the ancient Greeks up to its modern development in 18th century Germany. Here is a closer look at the history of gymnastics:

The Physically Fit Greeks

The early Greeks valued physical fitness and the perfection of the human body. This led to the forming of basic gymnastic and Olympic sports, such as throwing, jumping, and running. The modern word gymnasium comes from the Greek word gymnazein, which translated to “do physical exercise.” Gymnasiums were schools for practicing gymnastics, exercising, and socializing.

The Highly-Refined Romans

After the Romans conquered the Greeks, they refined the Greek activities and developed them into formal sports and competitions. Romans also used these early gymnastic movements to physically train soldiers. They used gymnasiums for the same purpose of exercise and training. However, the gymnasiums were reserved for training soldiers rather than socialization. The sport of gymnastics would later fall out of practice, but tumbling remained a popular pastime.

The Modern Germans

During the late 1700s, physical instructors began introducing the early forms of gymnastics in their training schools. Friedrich Ludwig Jahn of Germany is considered the father of modern gymnastics for his developments of different gymnastics bars, the balance beam, and jumping events. Germany was the leader in gymnastic sports and clubs that would eventually spread across Europe and England. It was not until the 1860s to 1880s that gymnastics was brought to the United States.

The Olympic Competitors

Men’s gymnastics has been a part of the modern Olympics since their formation in 1896. Women’s gymnastics was added in 1936. Men dominated the sport for decades until the performances of Olga Korbut in 1972 and Nadia Comaneci in 1976. These women’s performances were highly televised and encouraged the popularity of gymnastics among viewers. Since these performances, gymnastics has been a heavily promoted sport for both men and women.

Introduce children to the wonder of gymnastics in Tucson, AZ with Heart & Soul Kids Activity Center. We have many classes to address all skill levels and interests. Please call us at (520) 818-7974 to speak with an enrollment expert.

How to Bring Out Your Child’s Inner Artist

Creativity is a vital component of every child’s upbringing. It can help your child find different paths to a solution, and it helps develop critical thinking. You can bring out and foster your child’s artistry with simple steps, such as offering options and encouragement. Read on for more information about bringing out your child’s inner artist.

Observe Your Child

The easiest way to bring out your child’s inner artist is to observe her. Does she frequently dance through the house and sway to music, or does she take every opportunity to draw and color everywhere she goes? These clues are important to helping you figure out how to encourage your child’s inner artist. If she gravitates toward certain hobbies, then give her a brief lesson or simple supplies that might foster her creativity. If she does not grow bored with what you give her, then consider more advanced lessons and supplies.

Offer Options

If your child does not gravitate toward a particular area of art or creativity, then give her access to different options. Children’s activity centers and rec centers offer beginner classes in a variety of artistic mediums, such as music, dance, and drawing. You can also keep basic supplies around your home to see which ones your child gravitates toward. For example, crayons, washable paints, kids’ instruments, and karaoke machines are fun ways to engage your child and observe her reactions.

Encourage Your Child

Above all, always encourage your child to explore the world around her. This means trusting her to find her artistic way and supporting her throughout the process. Help her feel comfortable speaking about her favorite activities, likes, and dislikes. Engage in conversation, and participate in activities. These interactions are crucial to your relationship, and they will help you both bring out your inner artists.

Enroll your child in the different classes found at Heart & Soul Kids Activity Center, and we can help foster her amazing creativity. We offer onsite classes and mobile classes at nearby schools. Please visit us online and call us at (520) 818-7974 to learn more.