If you haven’t heard yet, the FIG has approved the inclusion of obstacle course competitions as a new discipline. While there may be some differing opinions about the FIG’s inclusion of this (which I don’t intend to get in to), I believe there are so many positive and exciting things to come from the overall acceptance of this sport. So, what does this mean for all of us in the gymnastics world?
- We are moving in a good direction with respect to training young athletes. A huge population of kids across the globe are infatuated with what was once considered only a “street activity.”. Years ago, local clubs began to pick up on this new obsession and started to incorporate small obstacles in their gyms to simulate this whole parkour concept. Kids were learning motor skills, coordination and strength in a fun way and in a supervised and safe environment. It’s pretty obvious how beneficial this has been in transforming the way kids exercise and learn the fundamentals of body control.
- It’s not going anywhere. That’s right, parkour and obstacle training are here to stay and I love it. Kids will never grow tired of this type of activity. It lends itself to free-thinking for the athletes in that they reach a point of being able to perform an infinite number of skills across a course that can be arranged in an infinite number of ways. Course setups can be relatively inexpensive for clubs, and therefore easy to get an affordable program up and running rather quickly. This in turn will help reach a broad range of demographics which will further drive this sport to bigger things.
- If you haven’t created an obstacle training program, now is the time! Based on what you read in the two items above, there is no reason to not start….today. You don’t even have to purchase new equipment. Start out with items you have in the gym – spotting blocks, incline mats, junior bars, etc. Get with your coaches and start to create an easy curriculum … and voila, you now offer obstacle training!
So, where am I going with all of this? While developing our free gym design software, we knew the importance of including obstacle training as one of the features. So we made sure that the very first version of the software would include Parkour and Ninja Training. It’s perfect from a coaching perspective. Easily go in to software and create course setups in your gym space. Save the .3Dgym file and share with colleagues, kids or even share them with other gyms who may be struggling with new ideas. The software will also keep track of your inventory and will give real time quotes if you are in need of new items to enhance your course. If you are proactive about managing the maintenance of your equipment, we take care of that as well in the pro version of the software. It’s awesome, really.
There is really no reason not to go download the software right now. We recently just enhanced the software’s performance, so it runs extremely smooth and quickly. We think you are going to love it!
Contact us if you have any questions.