We are often asked “Can a 10/11/12/13 year old etc..join a gym? As soon as kids can walk and stand, they should join a gym.
The Australian department of Health advice that children and teens should begin training asap and learn resistance training to build movement competency, gain confidence, better balance, coordination.
IT is advised that 60min per day of moderate to vigorous activity. Some of which must be dedicated to strengthening muscles; resistance training helps with body composition, bone density and soft tissue resilience.
So important for all those kids who begin playing organised sports, or already do so.
The earlier they begin the process the better they counter the sedentary habits derived from school, homework and video games and also become less injury-prone when playing physical activities and sports.
The trouble most parent encounter is the quality of coaching. Parents are obviously concerned by the experience and applied knowledge of those training their kids.
In fact, it is not so much about WHEN kids take part in gym activities, such as resistance training, but WHO coaches those kids.
Nowadays everyone is jumping on the wagon of “youth training”.
Only a few are really qualified to do so.
According to the position statement of the National body for Strength and Conditioning, kids of all ages can partake in resistance training, if the supervisor is at least an accredited Strength and Conditioning Coach with the ASCA (level 1). To coach kids of 13 and older, it is suggested the coach has completed Level 2 accreditations.
This alone shows how most gyms are likely not appropriately staffed to let kids use the resistance training equipment because of the qualifications of their trainers.
So much that the Insurances will not cover damages if trainers are not accredited with ASCA. When I opened the gym and took on the insurance, I had to provide all our qualifications to receive the go-ahead and be covered to coach/supervise kids during resistance training activities.
Athletix is led by ASCA qualified coaches and personal trainers, accredited up to Level 2 pro Scheme.
Can a Child Go to the Gym Alone?
We are often asked if kids can exercise alone. It depends.
Depending on the age and maturity we can provide programs based on their current capabilities as early as 14 years of age.
They are shown how to perform the program and they are allowed to do it on their own (under supervision).
When kids are particularly advanced, especially the “early developed” they might even be invited to participate in ADULT classes.