To stay and watch practice or NOT to stay, that is the question?

Many of our kids began in gymnastics at a young age, so we are used to waiting and watching while they are in class. We loved watching our little ones learn something new, do a new skill and clapping cause they did it on their own. Waiting/watching your toddler for an hour was much easier than now that your child is in a competitive team. The question is: should one stay and watch the entire practice? Answer: it depends

Recreational toddler/preschool student:

This is more on a personal preference. If you have a little one 2 or 3 years old, then we know they might need a potty break or they might have a bad day in which they only want mom. In this case we’d like to be there, not only for when they NEED us, but also to watch them and see what new skills they are learning and how they are progressing. I’m sure while they are in practice, no matter the age, they love to see mom, dad, aunt, grandma ect… watching proudly. I personally think for this age group, yes stay and watch. If you have and older child 7 y/o and up, then maybe once a week coming and watching is good. They work more on the same skill until it is done correctly, which may become boring.

A child in a competitive level:

If your child is part of a competitive team, then you know they practice 20 or more hours a week. As a parent of a competitive gymnast, I rather not stay and watch; I do however, try and come in once or twice a month for the last hour of practice and watch her. I would rather her tell me how her practice went and what new skills she learned or is continuing to perfect. I strongly believe that if there is ever a problem her coach will contact me and inform me of any issues in the gym. I can usually tell by watching the last of practice and by her attitude how practice went. Again, this is MY personal preference.

Whether we watch the full practice or not, as parents we need to be their support system at ALL times. Our children need to know and feel they can come to us with any concerns and that we will be in their corner supporting and loving them.

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