Safely Practicing Gymnastics at Home

As a sport, gymnastics has been around for over 2,000 years. In the beginning, gymnastics was a broad term used by the Greeks to encompass a variety of physical exercises in a competitive setting. For example, boxing, running, and wrestling were originally included in a group with gymnasts. Eventually, many of these other disciplines were filtered out, and gymnastics became a more pure form of what people practice today.

Of the four events in today’s gymnastics for woman (Vault, Uneven Bars, Balance Beam, and Floor Routine) only tumbling and a form of vaulting were done originally. Tumbling has roots in places like ancient China, Crete, and Egypt. It wasn’t until the late 1700s that Johann Christoph Friedrich Guts Muths modernized gymnastics into something that would be recognized as such today. Eventually, Friedrich Ludwig Jahn came along and further developed modern gymnastics, incorporating the parallel bars into gymnastics feats. And in 1896 the first truly open international Olympic gymnastics event occurred, one that started the tradition of gymnastics that we have today.

Since that time, competitive gymnastics is an incredible sport and includes gymnastics tumbling mats, gymnastics cheese mats (or gymnastics wedges), and a plethora of other pieces of training equipment. While it can be daunting to understand what the best types of gymnastics tumbling mats or other equipment are for home use or gym use, there are some things you can do to ensure safe gymnastics practice while at home.

Practicing Gymnastics Safely at Home

Though it isn’t necessary for all types of home training, a gymnastics tumbling mat is usually recommended for students who want to train at home. Gymnastics tumbling mats are recommended for a few reasons, first is of course for safety. Having a mat will help cushion falls and help gymnasts practice in an environment similar to how they are learning at the gym. In addition to safety, the biggest advantage is consistency. When gymnasts learn moves in a training facility, they are on gymnastics tumbling mats and tracks and other equipment. Being able to practice on similar equipment at home will give the same consistent feel to a gymnast.

However even if a gymnast doesn’t have a gymnastics tumbling mat to use at home, there are still plenty of exercises that can be done at home to help improve gymnastic skills.

Sprinting:

Getting better at sprinting will help both with the vault and the floor routine of a gymnast. Sprints are an excellent exercise to practice because they can be done almost anywhere and only require a good pair of running shoes. In addition, sprints help improve the cardiovascular health of a gymnast, which helps with overall fitness and endurance.

Pull-ups:

Being a gymnast requires upper and lower body strength, endurance, and power. Pull up bars can usually be purchased for $20 or $30 and fit in almost any doorway. Having the ability to both hang from a pull up bar and perform pull ups can help a gymnast prepare for the parallel and uneven bars, and the increase in arm strength will also help with beam and vaulting.

Handstands and Variations:

Being able to do handstands is an important part gymnastics at any level. Being able to perform handstands and maintain excellent form is very important. The great thing about handstands is that they are even easier to practice than sprints! All you need is a little bit of space and an even surface to practice on. Gymnasts that are brand new can even practice handstands against a wall to help build strength in the arms and shoulders. No gymnastics tumbling mats necessary for this one!

Splits and Other Flexibility Exercises: Just like handstands, performing the splits and other flexibility exercises requires no equipment and only a small amount of space. Being flexible is important to increase the ability of a gymnast and to keep gymnasts injury free.

Regardless of what your goals are as a gymnast, having some home equipment can help you break into that next level. However if you don’t currently have access to home equipment, be creative and work with what you have. Consistent practice of the five activities mentioned above can help improve your gymnastics skills immensely and maximize the time you put in at the gym.

Misconceptions About Foam Flooring You Shouldn’t Believe

Foam flooring and mats are commonly used in businesses, schools, gyms, and even homes. But despite their popularity, there are a lot of misconceptions regarding this type of floor surface. So today, we’re going to take a look at a few misconceptions and the truth behind them.

Foam flooring is too expensive. As far as reasonably priced flooring goes, foam floor mats are a great option. Foam flooring offers not only a low upfront cost, but it’s cost-effective — this surface is durable and can be used in creative ways to develop colorful patterns if you desire. The durability, flexibility, and low maintenance make it worth the cost.

There is only one use for foam flooring. Many people believe foam flooring is only used for fitness. And while it’s true that foam carpet tiles and mats, along with gymnastics wedges, are often used in the 180,000 fitness clubs around the world, there are several other uses. Foam interlocking floor mats are great for schools, sensory rooms, and even work settings as well.

All foam flooring is anti-fatigue. While it’s true that foam flooring does provide cushioning, foam can vary in density and durability, meaning not all foam flooring is anti-fatigue. There are a few foams that are labeled as “anti-fatigue” but generally, it’s good to choose a foam that offers some cushioning while still remaining sturdy.

It’s difficult to clean foam flooring. Cleaning and maintenance is always a concern regarding flooring. Fortunately, foam flooring, tumbling mats, and gymnastics wedges are some of the easiest surfaces to clean. Debris like dust and dirt should be swept away regularly and foam surfaces can then be cleaned with basic soap and water. It’s important to let the material completely dry before rolling it up or using it again but other than that, maintenance is a breeze.

You can’t move foam flooring around. One of the many great things about foam flooring is that it is lightweight and easy to move. This is great for places like schools, cheerleading gyms, and trade shows where the need for certain types of floor surfaces may change. It’s especially easy to move interlocking floor mats to different areas of a room or even in a building. This allows users to change the flooring to fit their different needs.

Hopefully, this article cleared up any confusion regarding foam flooring. This surface option is cost-effective, versatile, and can be a great addition to a lot of different environments.

3 Factors to Consider When Choosing Flooring for Cheerleading Studios

Cheerleading is a popular sport among a variety of age groups — from toddlers to college students, there are several people who participate in cheerleading all around the world. And because cheerleading involves so many intricate moves and stunts, it’s important for cheerleading studios to have the right equipment. So let’s take a look at a few things to keep in mind when looking for the right flooring for a cheerleading studio.

 

Level of shock absorption: When it comes to choosing tumbling mats for cheerleading, it’s essential to choose a flooring that is not rigid — surfaces like tile or concrete offer a minimal amount of shock absorption. This means that when cheerleaders land on an unyielding  floor, they’re going to have a high risk of injury. Fortunately, softer surfaces like foam floor mats can offer the level of shock absorption needed when doing cheerleading stunts. Cheerleading can involve a lot of dangerous stunts and activities that require flooring with cushion and shock absorption, so it’s best to avoid inflexible surfaces.

 

Amount of traffic: Floor surfaces can have varying levels of traffic depending on how many people use the surface regularly. Most likely, flooring in cheerleading studios is going to get a lot of traffic between practices and competitions. This means the flooring has to be durable enough to withstand high traffic. Gymnastics tumbling mats are designed to keep their form and remain sturdy even when they’re used frequently. Surfaces options like wood grain floor mats can even be great for hallways or changing rooms where the floor should still be padded but doesn’t need to look like a mat.

 

Budget boundaries: Of course, cost is always a concern. This is especially true for studios just starting out or companies looking to redo the flooring in large areas. Fortunately, surface options like wood grain floor mats and foam floor mats are very cost-effective. Not only is the upfront price reasonable, but they are easy to clean and easy to install, meaning they’re worth the cost in the long run. Furthermore, this type of flooring can be moved as needed, allowing it to serve multiple purposes if necessary.

 

With the CDC showing that only 23% of U.S. adults did enough exercise in 2018, it’s more important than ever to encourage people to be active. And with the right flooring, whether it’s wood grain floor mats or crash mats, those interested in cheerleading can participate safely.

Creating an Indoor Playroom for Your Toddler

Once you have children, your entire world changes. The spare room in your house changes from a home office into a playroom for your children. As parents, we want our children to get the most out of their playtime activities. That is why these great playroom hacks will not only help your children stay safe, but it will keep them active as well.

Safety First

Every parent knows that children are extremely clumsy. It seems like every day they are falling and getting hurt in some way. When a house has hardwood floors or cement floors, those small falls can end up causing some big bruises. That is why it is a great idea to invest in a foam floor mat for the playroom. Foam floor mats help cushion any and every fall so that there are fewer tears shed on a daily basis. If you are not a fan of the bright colored floor mats, there is also a wood grain floor mat that might blend in a little better in your home. Either way, these floor mats will be a great addition to your house, especially if you add more active equipment into your playroom like a gymnastics incline mat (or “cheese wedge” mat).

Active Equipment

Gymnastics cheese wedges are great additions to any playroom. These wedges allow your children to climb and stay active even when they are inside. The American Academy of Pediatrics says that children between 2 and 5 years old should practice motor skills such as tumbling, running, throwing, and catching every day. Having more active play equipment in your house like the gymnastics cheese wedge will promote just that. Adding a tumbling mat to your playroom is also a great idea that will help develop their tumbling motor skills. More active indoor equipment will also help tire them out, so nap time will be a whole lot easier on you and them!

Transitioning The Room

It can be hard to spend a lot of money on a playroom when you know that a child will quickly grow out of it. But, luckily this equipment can grow with them. It was revealed that in 2017, the number of participants in gymnastics amounted to approximately 4.81 million. That is a lot of children! Gymnastics tends to catch a lot of kid’s attention so they could use the tumbling mats and gymnastics wedges even into their late childhood. Even if they are not interested in gymnastics, the mats can be transformed into many things like martial arts mats and yoga mats!

Investing in a great playroom for your children will be worth every penny. It keeps them healthy, happy, and active. It also helps them develop their motor skills in a safe and fun environment. You will not regret it one bit!

What Do You Need for a Home Gym?

With summer just around the corner, more people are getting back into an exercise routine. Did you know that less than 5% of adults exercise for 30 minutes each day? Exercise is not only important for losing weight and building strength, but it’s also crucial for living a healthy life. If you’ve been considering working out regularly, and don’t have to go to the gym to do so, let’s take a look at a few things you’ll need in order to put together a gym right in your home.

Exercise machines: First off, you’re going to need some type of exercise machine. If you’re looking to work on cardio, you should consider a treadmill, a spin bike, or an elliptical machine. Having even just one of these machines is a great place to start. And if you can’t afford one of these machines or don’t have the room for one, consider investing in a punching bag or jump ropes — smaller workout equipment that will still help you get fit.

Lifting weights: Along with a few exercise machines, weights should be next on your list. Dumbbells or kettlebells both make great options for lifting weights. It’s important to have a wide range of weights so you can have access to the size you’re comfortable with — and you can increase or decrease the weights you’re using as needed. Investing in a good set of weights will help you hit your exercise goals and build strength quickly.

Foam floor mats: Having the right flooring is essential for a home gym. Having padded flooring will help protect your equipment and your floors from scratches. Interlocking floor mats are perfect because they can easily be placed and moved as needed — and they’ll provide the protection you need. Additionally, wood grain foam mats, rubber-topped EVA foam or another padded flooring will help protect you as well. Whether you’re stretching on the floor or take an accidental fall, cushioned flooring will keep you safe.

Your home gym doesn’t have to be anything fancy. With a few pieces of equipment, weights, and the proper flooring, you’ll be well on your way to reaching your fitness goals in no time.