Children and gymnastics
For the past 8 years, Terran Aw has been providing gymnastics movement education to the preschools and childcare centres in Singapore. Many children who underwent Terran’s training enjoyed themselves and benefitted so much that the parents urge him to set up a school of his own. This prompted him to set up the first BearyFun Gym at Tampines Point.
BearyFun Gym provides fun, yet challenging gymnastic activities in an all-inclusive, non-competitive environment. Its colourful décor and friendly demeanour are intentionally created to welcome any child into its folds.
Young children who enrol in the BearyFun Gym program develop individual strength, discipline and confidence through their child-focused gymnastics movement programs.
Terran believes in teaching progressively yet innovatively. A skill can be taught using various innovative methods, all students will be able to expand their potential.
Where Kids Learn To Move
Unlike the other physical activities, gymnastics benefit children by teaching them about the world, others and themselves as they move in different environment and solve daily challenges. They gain mastery over their body and build confidence and physical strength simultaneously. Some of the benefits include:
- Introduction of movement concepts – A child is initiated to body awareness and what the body can do such as locomotor movements (walking, running or galloping), stabilizing movements (bending, twisting, or balancing) and manipulative movements (throwing, catching, or striking).
- Distance Judgement – While balance comes naturally to most adults, young children have to develop their space awareness through guided stimulation and balance training. Through gymnastics, they learn to move forward, backward, up, down, left or right (directions), to move high, medium or low levels, and whether to go on curvy, straight or diagonal pathways. C also need to estimate the distances they have to travel or the space needed for their cartwheels or rolls.
- Coordination – Gymnastics is about whole body control and how you manoeuvre each part of the body successfully. For example, a gymnast has to identify the speed of movement (fast, medium or slow), how much strength to use for the movement (strong or light) and how to transfer weight from different parts of the body (e.g. hands and feet while “vaulting” over a foam box).
- Social and Emotional Development – Gymnastics generates great self-esteem in children as they progressively master their body. It is especially beneficial for shy and introvert children. “I was a very shy boy when I was young, but through gymnastics, I learnt to be confident and come out of my shell,” shares Terran, who used to be a stuntman for MediaCorp TV productions.
- Brain Development – Movement is needed to stimulate neuron pathways. Physical activities such as play produces neurotransmitters (natural chemicals in the brain) that help develop the neural pathways in the brain. Play is also important for social and behavioral development.
“Nature has its own way of developing,” says Jeannie Ng, BearyFun Gym’s consultant & early childhood educator. She cites how the nerve sensors along palms and knees are stimulated by crawling. Children who skip crawling stage and went straight into walking may have issues with their gross motor skills later in life.
What Does BearyFun Gym Offer
At BearyFun Gym, kids are encouraged to try different programs to stimulate the body. They are keen to spur future young athletes. Hence, the trainers are committed to engage children and develop in them a desire to have an active lifestyle.
Terran urges parents to “allow their children to experience gymnastics at a young age.” This is because early experience, especially movement is needed to stimulate neuron pathways. Children have up to 7 years of age to develop their neurons, after which, the development slows exponentially.
BearyFun Gym endorses a non-competitive environment to help kids learn to control and develop their body in a fun way.
Toddlers as young as 21 months can join its Jolly Tots (up to 36 months) program. Parents can look forward to innovative gym exercises such as crawling or tumbling that stimulates the brain as well as strengthens the body.
Your preschooler will learn about body control and coordination, as well as spatial awareness and perceptual judgement skills in their Bubbly Bear (4 year old), Lively Bear (5 years old), and Flexi Bear (6 years old) programs.
To keep your older, more active children (7 – 9 years old) in the pink of health, we recommend BearyTrim Fitness Gym with its range of energetic activities and trampoline exercises to burn off those excess energy.
BearyFun Gym also conducts a BearyPhysio-Gym (3-6 years old) for children with special needs to develop their listening, focusing and balancing skills, as well as body control and spatial awareness.
The BearyFun Gym is located at 2 Tampines Central 6 #07-02 Singapore 529483. Call 6588 1415 for a trial session or log onto www.bearyfungym.com for more information on birthday parties and programs.