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Class Descriptions

Click here for Move-Up Requirements Guidelines

Click here for Hot Shots and Fast Track Invite Letter

  GRGA is a Member of USA Gymnastics:    
USAG is the national governing board for the sport of gymnastics in the United States and responsible for selecting the Olympic team every four years. All GRGA coaches are professional members and safety certified through USAG.
   
   
Class Structure:    
All classes will begin with an 5-10 minute warm-up/stretch. This is followed by two or three event rotations where gymnasts will rotate through stations or follow a circuit of drills and fundamentals for that particular apparatus. A variety of techniques are used to aid in the mastering of skills autonomously. To increase each child’s awareness of skills, the instructors will spot, use demonstrators, set up strength and flexibility stations and incorporate training shapes (octagons, trapezoids, barrels, incline mats, etc.)
  
   
Class Ratios:   
 All classes will maintain an 8:1 gymnast/coach ratio or less. Safety and individual attention is our number one goal.
 
 
Advancement:  
GRGA provides a multi-level program where children progress at their own pace. There is no specific timeline for gymnasts to move up. The office will contact you at any time throughout the year if they feel your child needs to move to a more appropriate class.
 
 

 

Grand Rapids Gymnastics Academy Class Descriptions

 

Pre-school Program – Upstairs Pre-k Gym (Ages 2-5)

 

Parent/tot (ages 2 and 3 w/ parental assistance – 35 minutes) - This is a great class for introducing basic movement skills in a fun and age-appropriate environment. Gymnasts will work through a series of stations and coordination building skills in each class. Focus is on motor skills, listening and taking turns in a stimulating environment. One adult per child will participate in the class and assist the child in following the teacher’s instructions.  

Pre-k I (ages 3 and 4 – 35 minutes) Children work on all four apparatus (vault, bars, beam and floor) with the aid of smaller scaled equipment and props.  Classes are held in our upstairs pre-k gym designed for the safety of the pre-k age gymnast.  Introductory gymnastics skills are introduced along with reinforcing listening skills and following directions through the use of stations, circuits and props. 

Pre-k II (ages 4 and 5 – 45 minutes) We recommend this class for any child who meets the age requirement, has participated in pre-k I and is ready for an increased challenge.  This is also a great class for any five year-old who may desire the smaller scale equipment and cozier environment of our pre-k gym vs. moving to a beginner class in our downstairs gym.   

Advanced Pre-k (ages 4 and 5 – invitation only – 55 minutes) Enrollment in the Advanced Pre-k class is by coach’s recommendation.   Participants will have shown mastery in basic pre-k gymnastics skills as well as exceptional listening skill and an ability to maintain attention for the longer class period.  

Beginner (age 5+ - downstairs gym) Once a gymnast turns 5, they have the option of participating in our Beginner classes which are held downstairs in our recreational and competitive team gym.  There is no skill requirements for our Beginner classes and any gymnast age 5 and up may opt to register for this class if they would like. 

 

Recreational Program/Xcel Competitive Track – Downstairs Gym (Ages 5 and up)

Beginner (1 or 2 days/week – 55 minutes each class) This class involves the introduction of basic gymnastics skills on all four apparatus: vault, bars, beam and floor. Tumble Track (60 foot trampoline) is also incorporated to teach jumps as well as floor and vault progressions. An example of skills introduced are forward and backward rolls, cartwheels, handstands and bridges

Beginner 8+ (1 or 2 days/week - 55 minutes each class) All the same skill progressions as our Beginner class but aimed specifically for children starting gymnastics at age 8 or older

Intermediate I (1 or 2 days/week – 55 minutes each class) This class also utilizes all four apparatus and trampoline. Gymnasts will continue to perfect the skills introduced to them in beginner. They will also begin working on round-offs, bridge kick-overs, front and back hip circles on bars as well as moving their basic floor skills to the low and medium balance beams. Gymnasts in this class must have completed the Beginner class and been recommended by an instructor to move up.

Intermediate II (1 or 2 days/week – 1 hour and 15 minutes each class)  Gymnasts will be working on front limbers, back walk-overs and standing back handsprings on floor. Bar skills will include sole circles, stride circles, front and back hip circles. Vaulting will focus on handstand flat backs onto a resi pit. It is strongly recommended that gymnasts attend two days/week at this level. Coach’s will recommend gymnasts who have mastered Intermediate I skills for this class. 

Advanced Pre-team (1 or 2 days of Intermediate II and 1 day of advanced pre-team – 3.25 hours – 4.5 hours total/week) The Advanced Pre-team class is aimed at bridging the gap between our recreational track program and competitive team track program.  Gymnasts who are interested in adding this class must concurrently participate in at least one day of Intermediate II while attending the advanced pre-team class. Gymnasts may continue to attend two days of Intermediate II while participating in advanced pre-team if they would like. 

 

 

The goals of Advanced Pre-team are:

  1. To give gymnasts the opportunity to experience a longer/more intensive team practice.

  2. Increase time spent on the strength and conditioning that is necessary to acquire the skills and requirements needed at the introductory team levels.

  3. Identify gymnasts who may have a desire to compete in the future.

  4. Provide additional gym time to gymnasts with an interest in competing.

  5. Provide an opportunity to move towards competitive gymnastics without making a long term or full season commitment. 

  6. To assist coaches and families in determining which competitive program may be the best fit for your child. 

Xcel Bronze (2 days/week for 2.5 hours) This is the first competitive level of our Xcel program.  The Xcel program provides competitive opportunities for gymnasts and families who may desire less of a time and financial commitment.  It is also the more flexible of the two programs in terms of ability level.  Xcel is great for gymnasts who may want a more relaxed practice structure or prefer the opportunity to do their own routines vs. the structured preset routines that are choreographed for the entry levels of the JO system.  It is also ideal for gymnasts who may have gotten a later start into gymnastics or gymnasts who may struggle with certain events, strength, flexibility or fear.  Gymnasts who participate in our Xcel program are also often involved in other extracurricular activities or sports in addition to gymnastics. 

 

From Xcel Bronze, gymnasts can progress through the Xcel competitive levels which include: Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum and Diamond.  Advancement is based on skill-level and coach’s discretion on physical and mental readiness. 

 

 

 

 

 

Developmental Program – Downstairs Gym (ages 4 and up) - Junior Olympic Competitive Track (Coach Recommendation)  

The Developmental program is designed to identify gymnasts with strong natural ability and drive for the sport of gymnastics and prepare them for competitive gymnastics.  Gymnasts in this program will see an accelerated rate of progression due to the 2-3 day/week and year-round participation in these classes.  The classes are more intensely focused on strength, flexibility and technique to create a solid foundation of gymnastics basics that will ultimately prepare gymnasts for safe and consistent progressions through the levels. 

The final goal of the program is to develop well prepared gymnasts that are ready to compete through the USAG Junior Olympic program, beginning at Level 3.  The assumption upon entering this program is that your child will compete for GRGA at some point. 

The JO Developmental Program is a year-round program with a higher level of commitment expected than our recreational program. 

Hot Shots (ages 4-6 – 2 days/week 55 minutes) – This class will introduce gymnastics fundamentals on all four events, keeping the focus of class on fun and learning.  Skill work will include:

  • Floor – rolls, cartwheels, handstands, kick-overs, kicks, candlesticks

  • Beam – walks, kicks, jumps w/ proper form and technique

  • Bars – pull-overs, casts, back hip circles, forward rolls

  • Vault – running, hurdles, proper springboard technique, forward rolls

 

Fast Track (ages 5-8 – 2 days/week 55 minutes) – Gymnasts in Fast Track will have attained the skills from Hot Shots and demonstrate readiness for an increase focus on perfecting form and technique with the skills introduced in Hot Shots.  The main goal of this class will be to improve form and technique of skills already attained.  In addition, drills for skills in the next level will be introduced in the Fast Track level class.  These may include drills for: back walk-overs, sole circles and stride circles on bars and handstand flat backs on vault. 

Super Stars (ages 5-8 – 2 days/week 1 hour 15 minutes) – The Super Stars class will begin teaching gymnasts the Level 1 routines that are designated by USA Gymnastics.  These routines are the foundation that will lead to success as gymnasts move-up through the program, ultimately leading to competition at Level 3.  

Advanced Super Stars (ages 5-8 – 2 days/week 1 hour and 30 minutes) Gymnasts in the Advanced Super Stars class will build upon the skills and routines learned in Super Stars and will focus on learning the Level 2 routines and skills.  This is the last non-competitive level in the developmental program.  An increase emphasis on conditioning will begin in this level to prepare them for the necessary added time spent on conditioning at the competitive levels in the JO program.   

Pre-team (ages 5-9 – 3 days/week 1 hour and 30 minutes) The pre-team class will prepare athletes for their first season on the competitive team.  The goal of this class is to attain all the required Level 3 skills and begin learning the routines for Level 3.  Coaches will also spend time focusing on details specific to competing and how their routines are evaluated.

Level 3 (ages 6-10 – 3 days/week 2 hours and 30 minutes) Level 3 is the first competitive level of the Junior Olympic level system through USA Gymnastics. The JO program is a more intense program that follows very specific guidelines, progressions and requirements through USAG. JO requires a higher number of hours in the gym that increases with each level.  It is ideal for gymnasts who are naturally strong enough and flexible enough to be successful with the required elements at each level.  It is also the most commonly regarded path toward gymnastics at the collegiate levels, Divison I,II or III.   

Gymnasts will advance through the level system by achieving mobility scores set forth by USA Gymnastics and meeting gym standards of physical and emotional preparedness.