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Toddler gym classes

(11 Posts)
ElleDubloo Sat 04-Feb-17 20:51:42

Just wondering what your experiences are of taking your toddler to gym classes. We've recently enrolled our 27-month old DD in a class where they do toddler versions of sports, e.g. hockey, football, cricket. Everyone else in the class listens to the coach and follows instructions, e.g. run over there and hit the ball, etc... Whereas our DD doesn't listen, doesn't run when she's supposed to, doesn't high-five the coach, doesn't even keep her name sticker on. When she's asked to do something that she doesn't want to do, she lies down in the middle of the gym or tries to run out of the door. We've been to four sessions so far, and there seems to be minimal improvement. I'm trying to increase her confidence by practicing kicking a ball about in the garden at home, and I even bought her the T-shirt and everything to make her feel like she fits in (which she refused to wear). It's a class for 2-3 year olds, and I'm simply astonished by how well the other children do what they're supposed to. Why is my DD so undisciplined, and how can I encourage her to participate?

Nanasueathome Sat 04-Feb-17 20:53:51

I did Tumble Tots with my grandson....he started at 18 months (they do start classes earlier for younger children)
He loved it and it gave him a lot of confidence

Whitelisbon Sat 04-Feb-17 20:57:50

I have 3yo dts, and they've gone to gymnastics for over a year now.
Dtd joins in, does what she's told, and is a model student.
Dts runs wild, does his own thing, and is an absolute nightmare.
The teachers don't care, and, as long as he's not disrupting the other kids, I let ds get on with it, he's having fun and burning some excess energy. I live in hope that one day he'll do what he's supposed to, but I'm not holding my breath!

Zogthebiggestdragon Sat 04-Feb-17 21:06:49

I've been taking my daughter to Tumble Tots since she was about 25 months, and when we moved up to the two year old class - where there's a lot more direction and they need to listen to the worker and stay in one area at a time - she really struggled. It took months of her being the most inattentive in the class and always having to chase after her to bring her back to the area before she really got used to it. I felt bad at times but now I see it as helping her to understand that sometimes you need to listen and follow instructions. At 3 she's much better and I'm glad I persisted.

NannyR Sat 04-Feb-17 21:08:54

I used to take the little boy I look after to two different types of gym classes. One was at the council run sports centre, basically toddler gymnastics (gymikins it was called) they had a room set up with equipment like beams, swings, climbing nets etc. The session involved free play on the equipment, then sitting in a circle and doing activity songs and playing with hoops, streamers, balls etc with a really lovely teacher then more free play.

The other one was a drop in session that ran every morning at a purpose built gymnastics club, simply an hour's free play on the trampolines, foam pits, wall bars, beams. He loved this one!!!

We did try a preschool football class but it was too structured and he didn't really get it, he was too little to understand so many instructions, neither of us were enjoying it so we stopped it.

TataEs Sat 04-Feb-17 21:35:14

lol, me and you both.
i took ds1 to all sorts. i went to baby ballet once and the kids were so good (again 2-3) and mine ran about shouting and trying to leave.
my friend and i used to take the kids to a music class and every week she'd get out the parachute and we were the only two physically restraining their kids from climbing all over it.
honestly i used to look on in awe at the well behaved children participating appropriately!
if it helps ds1 is 5 now and is very good at participating in groups/classes. it changed when he was about 3.

Strawberrybubblegum Sun 05-Feb-17 10:00:17

If she's not enjoying it (and it doesn't sound like she is) then stop and try again in 6 months or a year. If you really want to do a class now, then do a trial for a few others and see whether a different one is a better fit (although be prepared for her to love the free trial and then refuse to participate as soon as you've paid...grin)

2 is still really little: this doesn't mean that she's undisciplined, or will never join in! It just means that she's not ready for this class yet. And really don't read anything into that: they genuinely do develop differently and at different rates, and it has no bearing on the end result!

Given that you've paid for the class, you could continue for the rest of the term providing it isn't actually upsetting her. But remove all your expectations (so long as she isn't being disruptive) and let her just take from it whatever she wants.

JaniceButterbrain Sun 05-Feb-17 13:20:24

Agree with other posts that it could be too soon but also, maybe it's not her thing? My daughter was just the same at a dance class but when we went to a football class she was so attentive and engrossed, doing as asked for the most part. It's just much more her thing. And the class was smaller, which seems to work better for her. She still invents her own games sometimes as she doesn't always understand what's being asked of her but she's only 2 and the coach doesn't mind.

ElleDubloo Mon 06-Feb-17 21:38:24

Thanks for the replies. I'm glad others have had similar experiences to me, and it's not just my DD being particularly wilful and undisciplined. She's only young and no doubt will develop a lot further before she's 3. I think the right thing to do would be to put the classes on hold for now (we joined late on in the term so only had to pay for 4 classes, plus a free trial) and try again when she's older.

ODog Tue 07-Feb-17 14:12:04

My 2.7yo does swimming and has only just started doing as he is asked sometimes rather than splashing around doing what he wants. DH takes him and always looks a bit fraught when they get back.

MiaowTheCat Tue 07-Feb-17 20:27:56

Started with both of mine at about 2 1/2 years old - they did dance from that age (ballet and tap) and both loved it but DD2 took longer to develop any focus than DD1. They also did a preschool gymnastics class from age 3 at the local gym club (chase up early if you're interested as the waiting lists at ours are getting bloody bonkers) and again similar patterns of behaviour.

Both have benefited from it though and still do the activities now (they're 4 and 5 respectively next month) - DD1 in particular was premature and her prematurity tended to show itself in motor skill delays in coordination and confidence and now she's doing work (adult supported) on a normal height balance beam and had to be retrieved from the top of the climbing frame on the playground after school this evening). DD2 looks like she's away with the fairies but actually what we increasingly realise (same at her nursery) is although she's looking all over the room and pointing out cobwebs in the corner - it all goes in and she's actually got a phenomenal memory for things like dance routines she's learned in class!

They've also just started swimming lessons - I don't think they'd cope well in larger classes but we go via a small swim school who have a 2:1 ratio and they manage it well as a result (and the cost isn't much more than the council-run larger classes)

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