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Gymnastics - Don't just outsource it

Dec 2014

First Published: , Edited: Tuesday 27-Jan-2015 8:39 AM
Author: Gary Black

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In early 1990 a small business appeared in Adelaide that ran gymnastics programs in-schools. They took a trailer full of equipment and staff with them to conduct the lessons on-site in the school they were working in.

Fast Forward to 2014, and the scene across Australia has changed significantly. There are now at least 10-15 in-school providers in NSW alone, all grasping for their own piece of the market. The original provider now uses fancy buzz words like 'neuroscience' to try and distinguish themselves from their competitors (and justify why you should keep paying them a small fortune), whilst the competitors either try to undercut each other, or use copious amounts of 'testimonials' on their websites, or fancy videos put together by marketing companies, whilst claiming to be the 'leading' provider.

What the majority of these companies have in common is they are often run by people whom sit in an office somewhere. The people on the ground actually doing the work in the school are often young university students. Often the sum total of their training in the company is a workshop once a year. Yes, sometimes you get some great instructors, but sometimes you also pay a lot of money for the exact opposite. They come in with a 'rubber stamp' one size fits all approach.

The abundance of external providers in the industry has had one major result - schools now see Gymnastics as something they can't do themselves, they have collectively invented a fear of gymnastics. External providers prey on teachers fear of Gymnastics. You have to cover it (it's in the curriculum), and they know it! The school down the road has a Gymnastics program, so you need to have one too!

But, what is really in the curriculum? What does a school really have to cover with Gymnastics? 

We are not training Olympians in our primary school sessions! All we are doing is teaching some rudimentary movement patterns. We are working on balance, agility, strength, co-ordination, etc... Equipment is nice to have, but you don't need it. There are teachers out there running some fantastic, challenging, and engaging Gymnastics sessions with the bare minimum of equipment. 

Who knows your children the best? You or an external provider that comes in for several weeks?

At 'Gymnastics 4 Hire' our goal is to work with you to help you run your own Gymnastics sessions so you don't need to pay someone else a fortune to do it for you.

  • If you want equipment - we hire out equipment so you don't have to spend a fortune to watch it take up space and collect dust in your store room for most of the school year.
  • If you want lesson plans, work programs, video demonstrations - our on-line resources have everything you need.
  • If you want someone to help you run a program, we have experienced staff available who can come and work with you.
  • Haven't got a big budget? - We can work with you to help design lessons to suit what equipment your school has available.
  • If you want someone to run a program for you like the other providers do, yes, we do that too. The difference is that we are cheaper, and our staff are either registered teachers, or very experienced Gymnastics coaches. We understand the need for consistent staffing, and reliability.
  • Want to learn how to teach a cartwheel or a forward roll? We run P.D. workshops too...

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About the Author

Gary Black

Advanced Silver Mens Gymnastics Coach, Intermediate Womens Gymnastics Coach, Intermediate Kindergym Coach.

Gary began running gymnastics programs in schools in 2003. Initially as a casual staff member with another company, whilst studing teaching at Deakin University; and quickly becoming one of their managers. Gary went on to own what was the sole Victorian franchise of that company.

Whilst with that company, under Gary's leadership, Victorian customers enjoyed quality, reliability, flexibility, and understanding.

In mid 2014, to be able to better service the changing needs of schools, Gary decided to move away from a restrictive franchised business, and started Gymnastics 4 Hire, determined to keep the high standards that customers had come to enjoy, and to provide a service specifically tailored to the customers needs.

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