Our Kids Gym includes a variety of physical activities. Two days a week we have strength training. Strength training in children can:
- Increase muscle strength and endurance
- Help protect muscles and joints from injuries
- Develop proper techniques that kids can continue to use asthey grow older
- Strengthen bones
- Help promote healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels
- Help maintain a healthy weight
- Improve confidence and self-esteem
Health care and fitness professional groups — including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American College of Sports Medicine, the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine, and the National Strength and Conditioning Association — agree that a supervised strength training program that follows the recommended guidelines and precautions is safe and effective for children
Weight training programs should be individualized on the basis of age, maturity, and objectives. This is why we limit Kids Gym to those 10 and older. Early-elementary kids have very different physical and mental abilities than those approaching adolescence. Tweens and adolescents can work together depending on the maturity of the kids.
Here at New Moon Fitness, we more interested in daily functional fitness and instilling a joy of exertion and a mastery of movement than in sports performance. As with adults, we focus on form and technique through the full range of joint motion for new clients. We perform larger-muscle exercises before smaller-muscle exercises, complex exercises before simple exercises, and multi-joint exercises, before single-joint ones.
We use primarily free weights, rubber tubing, and medicine balls. Even in adolescence, kids are still developing their balance and coordination, but we will include agility exercises and balance challenges, such as BOSU. We also have bars for climbing and swinging and a heavy bag for punching and kicking.
Children can improve strength by 30% to 50% after just 8 to 12 weeks of a well-designed strength training program. Kids need to continue to train at least 2 times per week to maintain strength. The case reports of injuries related to strength training, including epiphyseal plate fractures and lower back injuries, are primarily attributed to the misuse of equipment, inappropriate weight, improper technique, or lack of qualified adult supervision.