Setting gymnastics goals can help kids with maintaining motivation and sticking with the sport for many years. And the SMART goal-setting framework can help kids set effective gymnastics goals.
Check out these tips on helping kids learn how to set SMART gymnastics goals:
S is for Specific
There is a common goal that you hear a lot of people, not just kids, set for a particular activity. “I want to get better at ______.” And while it’s great that your child wants to get better at gymnastics, the problem is that saying that you want to get better isn’t specific. Is there a particular skill or element of gymnastics that your child wants to improve on? The more specific and clearly defined the goal, the greater the chances for success.
M is for Measurable
In addition to making goals specific, goals need to be measurable. If we go back to the example of “get better,” unfortunately, there is no way to measure when you’ve achieved this goal. How will your child know when they’ve gotten better? Find a way to measure success and identify a way to gauge progress.
A is for Achievable
Part of the goal-setting process involves finding a balance between knowing what you’re capable of achieving and pushing yourself to new limits. If a goal is too easy to accomplish, it can backfire. Easy goals aren’t motivating; they can actually end up decreasing motivation. At the same time, avoid setting a goal that’s impossible to achieve. So how do you know what’s achievable? A child can use their past experiences with gymnastics to help figure out a goal that’s achievable yet still challenging.
R is for Relevant
Goals should generally feel motivating and exciting. If your child sets a goal and then discovers they’re not excited to pursue it, this could be because it’s not relevant to their current stage of life, mindset, or interests. Encourage your kids to set gymnastics goals that they’re genuinely excited to work toward.
T is for Time-Based
Finally, goals need a set timeframe with a deadline; otherwise, it’s much too tempting to keep pushing them into the future. If the deadline or end date is several months away, it’s helpful to come up with smaller, short-term deadlines. Treat these mini-deadlines as checkpoints to gauge progress and stay motivated to accomplish the bigger future goal.
If your kids have SMART gymnastics goals, encourage them to share their goals with their coaches. Sharing goals helps to increase accountability and chances for success.
Kids First Gymnastics in Cedar Rapids creates a positive environment where your kids can work toward their personal gymnastics goals. To learn more about what we have to offer or how to get started with one of our programs, contact us today.