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Fresh ideas, insights, and tips from

The Little Gym 

 

Little Bugs to Big Birds

SS_Facebook_PC_LegUpBoys_4M-3Y_LOGO_800x800_ENOur youngest age groups at The Little Gym are developing so quickly. As teachers we notice these changes weekly; whether it’s as subtle as a 6 month old growing into those gorgeous cheeks or a confident 14 month old taking their first few steps, we love it! 

Each week for our Bugs (4-10 months) and Birds (10-18 months) classes, you’re along for the ride. You get to see how a developing, active child approaches new challenges, activities, skills and social situations throughout the 45 minutes and over the term. More importantly, you get to see how these new opportunities shape and impact their little lives outside of The Little Gym. 

If you've yet to experience a class at The Little Gym we'd love to have you come along and try us out! 
If you're not sure about what on earth a 4 month old can do at a class, don't worry, we get that question a lot! We could write a book on all the wonderful benefits of a Bugs or Birds class, instead we think you should pop along to one of our classes and experience it for yourself. 

Call us on 0113 3359915
Email leeds@thelittlegym.eu
We'd love to hear from you!

Term Has Begun!

SS_Facebook_PreK_PrekBoy_4M-3Y_HaHaHa_800x800_ENWe've had the best start to the term, it's so great to see all our members back after the summer break. 
All the children have grown up and grown so much taller in just 6 weeks; it's amazing what a little sunshine and ice cream can do! 

If you've not had chance to get your classes booked, don't worry, there is still time. Although a few of the classes are fully booked, we're sure there'll be one to suit you and your family. We can give you all in the information you need to be able to get booked in. 

Also, we do offer sibling discounts!! 

Don't hang around in getting booked in, these spaces won't be there long.

Call us on 0113 3359915
Email at leeds@thelittlegym.eu
Or find us on Facebook and send a message

Austhorpe Photography, thank you!

thumb_img_7435_1024We recently had a new family join us for their very first TLG class. After their experience Clare (the lovely mum) wrote a blog about her class and TLG journey. 

We're so overwhelmed with her kind words we wanted to share it with you... 

Head over to her blog and see what happens during your first time at The Little Gym

P.S We're also very impressed with her gorgeous photos too! 

1 Week to Go!!

1 week until classes startWith only 1 week to go until our Semester begins, have you got booked in and secured your spot? 

Already we have full classes and would hate for you to miss out! 
Here's the Semester 1 Schedule for you to pick the perfect class, time and day for your family. 

Classes run from 5th September through to the 12th February. With 21 weeks in total there's a lot of learning and Serious Fun to be had! 

If you've not yet chosen which class just get in touch. 
Call us on: 0113 3359915
Email us at: leeds@thelittlegym.eu
Or even find us on Facebook for more regular updates! 

Ready for the new term?

SS_Facebook_PreK_GirlJumping_4M-3Y_Yeah!_800x800_ENSummer seems to be flying by this year, we've had so much fun and hope you have too! 

Now's the time to start thinking about which activities your little one will begin (or continue with) in the new September term. Whether they're learning to sit, walk, roll, jump, handstand or even flip, we know we'll have the perfect class for you both. 

There are just two weeks left of the Summer 2017 term, classes and camps are continuing so if you're keen to discover a little more about what happens at The Little Gym then we'd love to hear from you. One of the team will be happy to help find your new class ready to begin on 4th September. 

Call us on 0113 3359915
Email us on leeds@thelittlegym.eu
Find us on Facebook and leave us a message 

August Special Offer

TLG_BirthdayGirl_CakeWe're excited to announce our August special offer for Birthday Parties at The Little Gym

Book a birthday party with us in the month of August to get £50 off the price
£200 for members / £250 for non members for 18 children (usually £250 / £300) 

Please note parties can be booked for dates throughout the year

Whether it's your child's 1st or 12th birthday, we can't wait to help make it the best yet! 

Call us, email us or pop in for more information


Summer Has Begun at The Little Gym

camp 1There's so much going on this summer and it's already begun! Don't miss out on camps and classes over the holidays, call us to book in or email to enquire. See you soon for Serious Summer Fun!

SUPER KIDS QUEST CAMP. 3-8 YEARS

With both morning and afternoon camps to choose from, Super Kids can join us on a specially planned quest. Children will be sailing Green Beards Pirate Ship and searching for clues to complete the quest in Foxhole Forest. We provide a snack and children will be placed into age appropriate groups for the time in the gym when necessary. Check the schedule here

SKILL THRILL CAMP. 5-12 YEARS
Does your child dream of cartwheeling? How about cartwheeling with one hand or no hands? What about a handstand or a back handspring? We will use games, break down skills, drills, preps and activities to ensure every child learns and progresses throughout the 3 hours with us. Check the schedule for Grade Camps here

CLASSES FOR CHILDREN 4MONTHS - 6 YEARS
We have a few select classes running over the summer holidays; especially for those not constrained to the summer holidays or children wanting to continue their gymnastics over the holidays we're here! Take a look at which classes we're running over the summer; Summer Classes at TLG Leeds

What's on this week?

20264882_1336812709765880_4641681595974067888_n_copyWhat's available this week? 

Camps this week are starting to fill up! Week 1 of our Summer 2017 term has been fantastic, with a brilliant buzzing atmosphere and children achieving massive skills, and breaking through some confidence barriers too (going into the gym by themselves for the first time, amazing!) 

If you're keen for your little (or big) one to come join us for a 3 hour camp, don't delay! Get in touch and let us know which day you would like to attend. The camps below have only a few spaces remaining!

Wednesday 2nd August 9.30am - limited spaces
(all other camps for the week have availability) 

Our classes have been very popular too this week! Don't forget we still have a few running over the summer, especially for our under 3's. Check here to see the schedule and what's available. 

Call us on 0113 3359915 or email leeds@thelittlegym.eu to book in! 

JOB VACANCY

HandingOutSmiles_EN_copyLOOKING TO USE YOUR GYMNASTICS SKILLS TO BENEFIT LOCAL CHILDREN?

Lead Instructor – Competitive package based on experience £15,000-£20,000
The Little Gym, the world's leading motor skills development programme for children aged 4 months to 12 years. TLG Leeds opened in 2016 and since then has grown rapidly. The programme uses gymnastics as a vehicle for teaching and developing motor skills together with exclusive music and activities including balls and games to help enhance physical, emotional, perceptual, social and cognitive development.

Classes are taught by highly qualified and rigorously trained staff, in a safe but challenging and fun environment. Children at The Little Gym are encouraged to develop in a non-competitive environment thus building their self-confidence and laying the foundations for success in all aspects of their future lives.

The Little Gym of Leeds opened in 2016 and are now looking to build on an already strong team to help continue the growth and build the business. The role of Lead Instructor requires a physically fit, energetic and enthusiastic team player.

A full-time role, the appointed Lead Instructor will assist the Programme Director with all aspects of the weekly lesson plans. They will personally spend the majority of their time delivering curriculum based classes to children. They will also be involved in marketing to potential customers and assisting in all aspects of the day to day running of the gym.

Candidates must have experience of working with children and experience of selling a service and / or marketing would be advantageous. The right candidate will have a confident telephone manner and highly developed communication skills. Gymnastics or gymnastics related skills are required

Genuine opportunities for advancement exist both within our gyms (Leeds and Harrogate) and across the network for the right candidate.

Closing date 20th August

Applicants should respond with a CV and covering letter to tlglorna@gmail.com

It's Time to Celebrate!

Show weekWe're so excited, it's Show Week! 

Ask any teacher at The Little Gym and they'll all tell you how much they love the end of term and this one special week in particular; our Show Week. Our term began in September and runs through until this week where we get to celebrate all the achievements over the past term. 

Throughout the week, for our Parent and Child classes we'll recap and look back on the massive milestones the children have achieved, walking, running, jumping, forward rolls and so much more! 

For our Pre-K children they get to show off their best skills and favourite activities all with a parent inside the gym to watch, a real treat for these little ones. 

The Grade children have a lot to be proud of during the term, achieving that elusive cartwheel, a handspring and some brilliant bar and beam skills, again with a proud parent watching by inside the gym. 

This very special week marks the huge successes of the children over the term and a "thank you" to all the parents and grown ups who bring these wonderful children to class each week. 

Please do bring camera's and any family/friends who would like to come along and celebrate too. All adults will be going into the gym this week; don't forget to take off those shoes and come prepared with socks and perhaps a jumper; it does get chilly if you're not doing the forward rolls! 

Be prepared for cheers, clapping, high5's and quite possibly some tears (and that's just from the proud teachers!) as we invite our members to celebrate our annual SHOW WEEK! 

If you have any questions, please just give us a call 0113 3359915 or email us leeds@thelittlegym.eu


Make a business out of making a difference

Make a business out of making a difference
Team up with The Little Gym Europe and become an owner of a franchise for children by bringing ‘Serious Fun’ to the children in your own community!

The Little Gym® prepares kids – and kids at heart – for life’s adventures. We promote growth in individuals, families and our communities by serving as a trusted partner on the journey of developing well-rounded, confident kids. You could be next!

We’re continuously looking for passionate and motivated entrepreneurs to join our family. Whether you’re looking to open a new location or are interested in an opportunity within an existing location, there are plenty of ways to become a The Little Gym® franchise owner.

Take the next step!  We make it easy to become a franchise owner to bring The Little Gym programmes to more children in more communities.  

LEARN MORE NOW!


Let's make their next birthday the best!

PARTY HARROGATE 2We love to celebrate each special birthday at The Little Gym; let us help you celebrate the next birthday and make it the best yet! From 1 - 12 years old. 

Birthday parties at The Little Gym are jam packed and full of action from the moment they step through the doors into the gym. We do all of the preparation so on the day, all you have to do is turn up and watch them enjoy the party. 

When you book with us, the Birthday Coordinator will liaise with you each step of the way. You pick the date and time best for you and we'll do the rest of the planning and preparation. If your child has a favourite super hero or TV character and would like to theme the party, we'll do our best to accommodate with the music and activities. 

The general structure of the party is as follows

50 minutes in the gym - we plan the games, activities and skills with any recommendations in mind to ensure it's what the birthday child wants. If they want a more structured party, or more free play, if they would like hide and seek or lots of running games, we can make it happen.

15-20 minutes - out in the foyer to have a quick drink and a very light snack. We don't provide the food and ask that if you do want to bring it with you, it is very minimal. The children really don't eat too much during our parties but rather want to go back into the gym and play! 

Remaining time of the 1 hour 30minutes - back in the gym! This is where they get to play and explore for the last few minutes before home time. 

Here's what we provide:
- Exclusive use of the whole facility
- Invitations to give to your guests
- 2 instructors to lead your class
- 1 making sure your guests are all ok
- A balloon, cup, plate and napkin at each place setting
- Water or juice for the children
- Complimentary tea and coffee for all the adults
- A T-Shirt for the birthday child

Here's what you need to bring:
- A light snack
- Cake
- Party bags
- Any other drinks/ snacks for the adults

If you would like any more information, or have a party idea in mind we can help you with, please do get in touch. We love to talk birthdays so give us a call or pop by and we can help plan the best one yet! 

Call us on0113 3359915 or email leeds@thelittlegym.eu

Enrol for September 2017

Facebook_Priority-enrolment_1200x1200px_EnglishWe're excited to announce it's that time of the year again! 

For our current members (with an active Annual Family Membership) Priority Enrolment offers the chance to secure a space for our new semester starting on 4th September 2017 with a large 20% discount. 

Below are the key dates for you to be aware of and how to make the most of the Priority Enrolment discount. 

From 13th June - During your class you will receive a Priority Enrolment pack of information containing; a hand written report from your child's lead teacher, a schedule for the new semester (check the semester schedule here) and a letter detailing the payment methods and important information.

The class report will include a recommendation for the class your child should be in for the new term (either based on age or ability) This class is reserved for them until 2nd July. If we haven't received a payment to secure their place, we will release the spot for someone else. 

From 13th June - 2nd July - You will have 3 weeks to secure your child(ren)'s space with either a deposit or full payment. Unfortunately due to demand we're unable to secure a space without payment. 
PLEASE NOTE: If your child is due to move up to a more advanced or older age group and you're unable to make the recommended class, let your teacher know as soon as possible. 

For many of our after school classes we now have waiting lists so do pay your deposit to avoid disappointment. If you have a 2nd choice class, please also let us know. 

3rd July - The Priority Enrolment discount will have expired by Monday 3rd July. 

Between 3rd July - 4th September - You will still have an opportunity to enrol for the September term classes, unfortunately without the 20% discount.

This is a great opportunity to continue all the incredible progress the children have made this term with the biggest saving. We can't wait for them to continue to grow their skills and confidence into the new year. Please do let one of your team know if you have any questions or concerns or would like any of the above information explaining in more depth. 

We'd like to take this opportunity to again thank you for your continued commitment and look forward to another Semester of Serious Fun! 

Visits to The Little Gym

visitsWe're so lucky at The Little Gym to be able to offer children between 4months - 12years old the opportunity to experience movement and life skills each week. We'd love to give more local children the same opportunity.

If you're part of a local playgroup, nursery or pre school and would like to bring your children to visit us, get in touch! We have plenty of space and options for a structured class led by our fantastic team.

During the session we can structure the activities to a theme or particular aspect of a curriculum you have in mind. We will lead the class with guaranteed smiles, fun and learning throughout. With exclusive use of the whole facility, with time for refreshments too, we can run a full fun party, themed structured class or a mix of the both.

For more information, please get in touch with Kate or Lorna at the details below. We'd love to have a cup of tea and a catch up and see what would work for you.

We look forward to welcoming you very soon.

Call us on 0113 3359915
Email leeds@thelittlegym.eu

Don't miss out on classes you've paid for

ExcitedGirl
Did you know...
If you know you're unable to attend your regular class for a week, whatever the reason, you're able to use that as a "make-up" class at a later point within the same term.

As long as you've let us know, we're then able to cancel your class and save that for another time.
It's ok if you attend two classes in a week, it's ok if you switch to another day.

Please do give us a call, email or send us a Facebook message to check for space in the class you're planning on joining us for.
Towards the end of term, classes are quite busy so book your make up classes in advance to avoid disappointment.

How does gymnastics help to get ready for school?

Giggle WormsThis is the season when children learn which school they'll be going to in September, or perhaps you have a little one who still has a year to wait. We can help in both cases and give options for the next phase in your child's life. 

For children heading to school this September, it’s a nerve wracking time for some and the best adventure for others. School brings new challenges, social situations and an opportunity like no other. Here at The Little Gym we’re so proud to see our little Giggle Worms venturing off in their pristine uniform out to experience school. We’ve watched them refine their social skills over the past year in our classes, working amongst friends and learning how to listen and take turns.

One of the hardest challenges these 3-4 year olds have had to master over the past year is the ability to stay still, take instruction and then go! We know children love to move, it is how they learn best after all, so how has this skill helped in preparing them for school?

Imagine you’re a 4 year old doing a forward roll, throughout the whole experience, your body is turning and spinning, your eyes are tracking to see which way up your surroundings are and your muscles are reacting to the environment to ensure a safe stop at the bottom! This may only last a few minutes but the effects will have a lasting impact.

This rolling helps to stimulate the sense responsible for balance and muscle control, essential for maintaining an upright seated position whilst listening to instruction from a teacher. It also helps to send information to the brain about how much muscle force is needed to stop!
Playing in the playground with new friends is a tricky domain to navigate, especially when playing tag, you don’t want to use too much force and push over your new friend! This is just one of many movement based developmental milestones which are essential to learn before starting school.

If you have a little one starting school in September (or a little one who still has another year to wait) and are looking for a weekly class for these last few months before school begins then just get in touch. We have plenty of space for children between 3-5 years old ready for their next adventure. Check our schedule to see which day and time works best for you and get in touch, we’d love to welcome your family along.

Call us on 0113 3359915 or email leeds@thelittlegym.eu
We also offer a complimentary first class, just click here to leave us your details and we'll get back to you.

Summer's Coming!

Summer is ComingIt may not feel like it but Summer is nearly here! In just a few weeks the schools will be breaking up for 6 weeks (or more) of summer fun. Here at the gym we're ready for you to start booking your classes and camps over the summer break so your little (or big) one can continue their Serious Fun at The Little Gym!

We have a classes and lots of camps! Below are the links for both so you're able to find all the information you're looking for. As ever, if you have any questions or would like more information, call us on 0113 3359915 or email leeds@thelittlegym.eu and we'll be happy to help! 

IF YOU BOOK THROUGHOUT THE MONTH OF MAY WE'RE OFFERING A 10% DISCOUNT ON BOTH CLASSES AND CAMPS
You can download the schedule here and pick which days and times work best for you

SUPER KIDS QUEST CAMP. 3-8 YEARS
With both morning and afternoon camps to choose from, Super Kids can join us on a specially planned quest. Children will be sailing Green Beards Pirate Ship and searching for clues to complete the quest in Foxhole Forest. We provide a snack and children will be placed into age appropriate groups for the time in the gym when necessary. Check the schedule here

SKILL THRILL CAMP. 5-12 YEARS
Does your child dream of cartwheeling? How about cartwheeling with one hand or no hands? What about a handstand or a back handspring? We will use games, break down skills, drills, preps and activities to ensure every child learns and progresses throughout the 3 hours with us. Check the schedule for Grade Camps here

CLASSES FOR CHILDREN 4MONTHS - 6 YEARS
We have a few select classes running over the summer holidays; especially for those not constrained to the summer holidays or children wanting to continue their gymnastics over the holidays we're here! Take a look at which classes we're running over the summer; Summer Classes at TLG Leeds

Wow - Bring a Friend MONTH!

Boys - BFMWe love seeing the children in our weekly classes smiling, laughing and learning. We also love seeing the children building confidence and taking that confidence beyond The Little Gym. One of our 3D learning aspects we believe in is building Social Skills and what better way to combine the two by inviting a friend to share the growth.

Over the coming week we will be handing out some very sought after Bring a Friend Invitations to all of our current members; you! In the past we’ve had a Bring a Friend Week… this term we’re having a Bring a Friend Month! Having listened to feedback, we’re giving you more time to book in that very special friend to join us.

Here’s what happens next…

Step 1: With your little one, pick a friend who would love to experience a TLG class.

Step 2: On the invite, fill in the details of your regular class, day, time; this will be the class your friend is invited to join.

Step 3: Make your friend very happy and hand them the invite. They get to join you for 1 class during the month of May

Step 4: Have your friend give us a call to book in for the class written on the invite

Step 5: Meet them at The Little Gym and have Serious Fun!

Here comes the fun part…

If your friend loves it as much as your little one, they have until the end of May to book in and receive a 10% discount on the term fees. Your little one and their friend will also both receive a free TLG T-Shirt!

Don’t forget

If both you and your friend are unable to make your regular class, you’re still able to switch to a different day you’re both able to attend. Please check with one of the team before handing out the invite, just to make sure there’s space for you both.



TLG Leeds is Turning One!

Collage of the yearWe couldn’t be more excited to be celebrating our 1st birthday at The Little Gym Leeds. It’s been such a wonderful journey, not without it’s ups and downs, but what brilliant journey doesn’t have it’s fair share of challenges?!

Over the year we’ve seen hundreds of children in classes, camps and birthday parties and what’s most important to us is seeing children happy and confident, this has been our biggest achievement.

Each week, we welcome our current members to their classes and see the impact the consistency has on the children’s confidence, skills and wellbeing. We’re so proud to have a wonderful community at the gym of families and friends who love to come and experience all we have to offer each week. We’re so grateful to all of you.

As part of our celebration we wanted to do something a little different.

Throughout the week of 24th - 30th April come take a picture with our TLG Leeds Instagram frame and be entered into a prize draw to win a TLG Leeds Birthday Party for your child!

Instagram FrameYour teachers will be coming round during classes throughout the week with the frame, if you would like a snap, let us know. We’ll take the picture and pop your name into the prize draw. The pictures will be available on our Facebook and Instagram pages for you to see throughout the week!

Fingers crossed you’ll be our lucky winner

With a huge thank you to our TLG Leeds Families, we can’t wait to see what the next year holds for us!



Easter Break Important Dates

TLG-Leeds-7875Dates for your diary over the Easter Break 2017

It's fair to say that at this point in the term everyone's ready for some time off to spend with the family over the Easter holidays; getting away for a little break, heading outside for some fresh air and of course searching for those eggs in the annual Easter egg hunt! 
Below are our opening times over the next few weeks, just so you don't miss out on what's going on! 

3rd - 9th April - classes running as usual
6th April - Baby's First Easter Party (See more information here)
10th - 13th April - Gym closed for classes but running our Easter Camps (more info for 5-12years, 3-8years and our full camp schedule!) 
14th - 17th April - Gym closed completely 
18th April - Classes resume
23rd April - 30th April - The Little Gym Leeds' 1st birthday celebrations! More info to come

Of course, if you have any questions about any of the above, let us know and we'd be happy to help and answer your queries. 

Call us on 0113 3359915 or email leeds@thelittlegym.eu

For our current members, please do remember to let us know if you're going to be missing a class so we're able to cancel it for you. You'll have the class to make up before the end of our current term on 23rd July. 

Graduate Trainee Position 2017

HandingOutSmiles
LOOKING TO USE YOUR GYMNASTICS SKILLS TO BENEFIT LOCAL CHILDREN

Graduate Trainee - c£18,000 package dependant on experience

Are you an enthusiastic, active, motivated person with a background in gymnastics, looking for a fun and challenging graduate role working with children? The Little Gym is looking for someone like you to join the team this summer 2017.

The Little Gym, the world’s leading motor skills development programme for children aged 4 months to 12 years, has successfully been operating in Leeds for just a year. The programme uses gymnastics as a vehicle for teaching and developing motor skills together with music and activities including balls and games to help enhance physical, emotional, perceptual, social and cognitive development. Classes are taught by highly qualified and rigorously trained staff, in a safe but challenging and fun environment. Children at The Little Gym are encouraged to develop in a non competitive environment thus building their self confidence and laying the foundations for success in all aspects of their future lives.

The Little Gym of Leeds has experienced a rapid growth with over 500 children attending every week. We are looking to recruit an energetic and enthusiastic graduate instructor that can quickly develop into a management position. This role is critical to the future growth of the gym and full training will be given. The successful applicant will join our dynamic and committed team of instructors at an exciting time of continued growth. We are looking for a part or full time instructor with excellent communication skills who will spend the majority of the time teaching curriculum based classes to children. With the rest of the time dedicated to growing our enrolment numbers through excellent customer service, marketing to potential members and assisting with the day to day routine of the gym. We are looking for a person who ideally has previous gymnastics experience and has a HUGE love for working with children of differing ages.

Candidates must possess a minimum graduate equivalent qualification in a sports related, education or management discipline, combined with a background in gymnastics. Genuine opportunities for advancement exist both within our gym and across the network for the right candidate.

Applications close on 24th April 2017 and an assessment day will be held on Thursday 11th May that you will need to attend.

Please apply with covering letter and CV to kate.henebury@thelittlegym.eu

Job Type:
Full-time

Salary: £18,000.00 /year

Baby's First Easter Party

Camps_Easter_Baby_Email_Facebook_imageThe Little Gym Leeds is excited to announce our Baby's First Easter Party

If your baby is celebrating Easter for the first time this year we'd love to welcome you along for a special first party.

1.30pm - 3.00pm
Thursday 6th April
£5 per family (please call to book in)

We'd love to see you; there'll be a raffle, parachute, bubbles, bells, songs and age appropriate activities for children all set to experience their first Easter. 

Of course we'd love to see your little ones in their best Easter outfits... bunny tails more than welcome! 
The wonderful Louise will be our photographer for the day taking pictures throughout the session. Take a peek at her website before the day to see her pictures https://www.louisepollittphotography.com/

Call us on 0113 3359915 or email leeds@thelittlegym.eu for more information





Why does movement matter?

BabyMomonWedge
In the current “learning” climate, it’s difficult not to get wrapped up in the pressure of having children reading and writing before they get to school. A child’s brain is primarily concerned with developing the child as a whole and it all boils down to early movement experiences. The more a child is able to move; either through early rolls, crawls or simply sitting and standing, the more their brain is gathering information from their surroundings and creating the building blocks for later higher level learning. In the first years of childhood, around 90% of the neural pathways in the brain will be set for life.


Reading and writing will come in time, what is essential before they get to school is… movement.


If a child can’t sit upright and have core balance, how will they sit at a desk and take in information from the teacher?
The proprioceptive and vestibular sense is vital for this, both stimulated through movement.


If a child doesn’t have the strength in their arms, how will they manipulate a pen with fine motor control?
Through crawling, weight bearing, grabbing grasping and muscular development this is accomplished.


If a child can’t move their body from left to right to track a car, how will they cross the road?
Each time a child tracks a bubble across their body or is able to right themselves after rolling down a hill, they’re one step closer from using depth perception to figure out how far away a car is and look from left to right and back again.


Through the 7 (yes 7!) senses, children take in information about their surroundings, the brain organises this information and provides an output, movement. Early movement experiences, such as rolling or sitting upright require a development in the vestibular system, essential for everyday life! The vestibular system is the earliest sense to develop in the womb and is responsible for spatial awareness, balance and eye tracking, 3 vital tools for being able to negotiate the world.

Each time a child goes out of their upright position; think rolling or going upside down, the vestibular sense sorts the information about which way is up and which way is down then stabilises the eye in order to regain balance. In a wider sense of its importance, this is the process which helps you maintain an upright stationary position to read this blog from left to right across the page (and being able to distinguish the different between letters like “b” and “d”)


At The Little Gym, it fills us with pride to see children each day testing their bodies and developing new skills through gymnastics based movement. For children between 4 months and 12 years we know each week they’re having Serious Fun each time they enter the gym.


“The more a child moves, the more a child knows, the more a child knows, the more they want to know and the more the child wants to know, the more a child needs to know” (A Moving Child is a Learning Child - Connell and McCarthy 2014)


We Love Bugs

Bugs - groupThis spring we're looking forward to welcoming new little Bugs to The Little Gym Leeds. 

But what are Bugs at The Little Gym?

Our Bugs programme is especially developed for children between the age of 4-10 months old. Building primarily on small movements and strength in preparation for the big milestones of being upright; sitting, crawling, walking, running and jumping.

Our child friendly and purpose built environment allow for positive development of ‘internal’ senses such as their proprioceptive awareness (muscle and spatial control) and vestibular sense (balance and movement sense), essential for development.

Teachers will lead the group through appropriate skills, giving progressions where needed.
Along the way, our Bugs will be exposed to necessary stimuli that supports young babies in the first year of a child’s rapid development, through carefully structured motor-skill rehearsal (movement aided or manipulated by parent and instructor), social interaction, musical activities and language concepts, all scientifically shown to enhance early years development.

Parents are taught how to practice exercises at home and to understand the benefits of such exercises that enhance development and increase trust and confidence in both the parent and child, known to give children a head start as they move from motionless ‘Bugs’ to inquisitive ‘Birds’ and far far beyond.

Above all, our Bugs programme is a life-enhancing 45 minutes each week; a chance to learn and to laugh, to wonder and to smile and to share and make new friends with like-minded mums and your child’s equally like-minded play-mates!

Join us for weekly classes and see how just 45 minutes a week can play a vital role in your little one's development, reaching far further than just the colourful walls of The Little Gym.

Our classes are Wednesday 10.15am and Friday 2.45pm and spaces are available to start straight away

Call us on 0113 3359915 or email leeds@thelittlegym.eu to book in or to speak with one of the team for more information.

Easter Gymnastics Camps (5 - 12years)

Grade - bars handstand
We're so excited to be running our amazing Grade gymnastics camps over the Easter holidays!

For children between 5 - 12 years old who are looking to improve their handstands, cartwheels and vaulting we have 2 camps available. 3 hours of full on Serious Fun!

Tuesday 11th April and Thursday 13th April from 1.30pm - 4.30pm


There are a limited spaces available so call or email and book in at the details below

Email:leeds@thelittlegym.eu
Call: 0113 3359915

Holiday Camps During the Easter Holidays

Summer Fun
What happens at The Little Gym Holiday Camps? 

We're so excited to release our Easter Camp dates at The Little Gym Leeds; check here for the timetable. During the Easter holidays we'll be running our incredibly popular 3 hour camps for children between 3-8 years and 5 - 12 years. 

There have been lots of questions about what happens in a 3-8 year old camp so here's the run-down on what to expect...

9.30am (or 1.30pm) Welcome - Children are invited into the gym as parents leave for the duration of the camp. The 1st hour in the gym, our happy campers are swept up in gymnastics games, activities, quests and challenges as they experience the gym through stories and a special theme.

10.30am (or 2.30pm) Snack and Craft - after the first hour the children are seated together for a snack and drink which we provide. A lovely opportunity to make new friends and chat to the other children. After all the running, climbing and jumping they're ready for a little break as they prepare to make their craft to match the theme of the day. 

11.30am (or 3.30pm) Back for more fun in the gym - We know these children don't sit for long which is why the 3rd hour of camp is a full on party! Children get a little time for free play, lots of fun games and our amazing AirTrack! As the children leave the gym at the end of the 3 hours, parents are there ready and waiting to hear all about their adventures. 

We'd love to chat more about the camps and of course would be happy to answer any questions you may have. Why not give us a call on 0113 3359915 or email us leeds@thelittlegym.eu to book your 3 hour camp at The Little Gym Leeds

Come join us for our 2nd Semester

Its not too late to join
13th February - 23rd July 2017

We're so excited to announce the start of our 2nd Semester at The Little Gym Leeds. For children between 4 months and 12 years old there are 22 weeks ahead of us and so much to look forward to. 

Having opened less than a year ago (23rd April to be exact) we've added yet more classes to meet demand so for the first time we're proud to announce even more times for our most popular age groups. Take a peek at our weekly gymnastics schedule here

Once you know which day and time suits you best, give us a call or get in touch at the details below. We can't wait to meet you and your family. 

Whether your little one is a beginner in sitting, walking, running or jumping or they're wanting to learn how to do their very first cartwheel, The Little Gym Leeds can provide a safe, positive environment to support their needs. One of our trained team will be happy to assist with your enquiries, we can't wait to meet you and start your The Little Gym journey. 

Call us on tel: 0113 3359915 or email leeds@thelittlegym.eu



The Building work is underway!!


We are so excited with the progress at the Leeds site!!



Team having a photo shoot ready for opening!!

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The Little Gym Leeds is opening!!

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Having opened a The Little Gym in Harrogate in 2010, I am thrilled to announce that I will be opening a second unit in Leeds on April 23rd! If you are interested in booking a FREE introductory visit or taking advantage of our PRE-OPENING OFFER, please register here your details. We look forward welcoming you and your child(ren) & will keep you informed as we get closer to the opening date!

Take a look at our schedule and spread the word!!



Get Up and Get Moving!

Get-Up-and-Get-Moving

The times, they’re changing, and it’s becoming even more difficult to keep our kids engaged, happy, and well, out of our hair. I know I’m not alone when I say that I have used my friends: television, computer, and tablet as a distraction for my children when I need 30 minutes of peace.

 

As parents, we know it’s not always easy, but are kids being exposed to too much technology? According to The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), children spend an average of 7 hours a day using media including television, computer, internet, video games, and cell phones. In an ever growing media driven world, it’s becoming even more important to make sure your child is getting active every day.

 

So, how can you encourage your child to get active? Show them that being active is fun! Exercise as a family by going for a nightly walk, jog, or having a family soccer game in the back yard. You can also get your children involved in activities outside of the home like The Little Gym to help them appreciate a healthy and active lifestyle for years to come. Whether you’re running, jumping, or tumbling, get moving with your child to build the foundation for a lifetime of healthy habits!


Our Top 5 Family Dinners

Our-Top-5-Family-Dinners

You know how important it is that your kids eat a healthy dinner every night and we know how hard it is to get your kids to eat the food you want them to eat. If you’re tired of mac & cheese and frozen chicken nuggets, here’s a list of our top five healthy dinners that the whole family will enjoy.

 

  • Looking for a way to pump more vegetables into your kids’ diet? Let’s start with Spaghetti Squash and Meatballs. The spaghetti squash is packed full of nutrients. The recipe also includes a healthy amount of celery, carrots, and tomatoes all disguised in the sauce. If you want to make it even healthier, try trading the ground beef for ground turkey.
  • These Baked Southwestern Egg Rolls are stuffed full of healthy things like black beans, spinach, and corn. If you want to make them even heartier try adding some cooked chicken breast. These save so well you might even want to make a double batch so your kids can eat them the next night, too!
  • We love burgers! As a parent you’ll love these Ultimate Turkey & Black Bean Burgers even more because not only are they made with healthy ground turkey but there is also a serving of protein- and fiber-rich black beans in each one. Add some sliced avocado to really make it healthy to the max.
  • We love this recipe for Sesame Chicken Salad because it’s a little out of the ordinary and easy as can be. Your kids will love eating the carrots, snow peas, chicken and pasta, especially when they’re the ones who mix the peanut butter dressing.
  • Your family will beg you every week to make these Chicken Pot Pie Turnovers, a fun play on the traditional chicken pot pie. You’ll be surprised how easy it they are to make. This recipe calls for chicken breast, celery, and carrots, but don’t be scared to add other vegetables to the mix.


Happy eating!


Benefits of Chores

Benefits-of-Chores

Do children need chores? According to a recent Wall Street Journal article, young children who are given household chores “build a lasting sense or mastery, responsibility and self-reliance.” And what parent doesn’t want that for their child?

 

The article also found that those who began chores around ages 3 and 4 were more likely to have positive relationships with their families, higher academic success and were also found to be more empathetic and responsive to others needs. Need we say more? Check out these 5 ideas for encouraging your child to help out around the house:

 

  1. Turn on some music while your child sweeps the kitchen or picks up their toys. Adding music to the mix will make doing chores more enjoyable for both of you.
  2. Kids love a good game – set a timer and motivate your kids to do their chore as fast (and efficient) as possible.
  3. Consider the way you approach chores – make it fun and let your child know that they are “helping” you by completing a certain task.
  4. Keep a chore chart - once your child has filled their chart let them choose a “prize” of their choice like staying up “late” on a weekend, ice cream with mom & dad, or a trip to your local children’s museum or zoo.
  5. Have fun with it. Making chores fun is the best way to encourage your child to complete their chores now and for years to come.

 

To read the full article, click here.


Nice Kids Finish First

Nice-Kids-Finish-First

The Little Gym helps kids develop social skills, which studies find may be the most important factor for long-term success.


Science has confirmed it: nice guys don’t finish last. At least not according to a new study which suggests that kindergarten students who display pro-social behavior may be more likely to graduate college and have steady jobs. The 20 year national study tracked more than 700 children from kindergarten through age 25. The researchers found that young children that scored highest in social competence skills, such as sharing, taking turns, and listening, were four times more likely to graduate from college than those who did not. The study also found that, in some cases, these types of social skills may be better predictors of future success than academic skills.

Positive social skills are something that can be learned and improved upon throughout childhood. Programs at The Little Gym help children grow and develop social skills in a fun environment that provides a different context for learning. Games are purposefully designed to enhance social development and the non-competitive environment encourages children to play with each other rather than against each other. Children learn to become more considerate of one another, more aware of the feelings of others, and more willing to work together for mutual benefit. These essential life skills help children learn how to interact in positive and socially acceptable ways which helps them become well-rounded little people so that, as research now confirms, they grow into well-rounded adults.


Oh where, oh where have our dear manners gone? Oh where, oh where could they be?

Oh-where-oh-where-Manners

Good manners are not something that children will naturally pick up. Children need to be taught, reminded, and reminded again of the importance of having good manners.  Good manners help children become well-rounded adults. The trick is to teach your child manners that are age-appropriate so they are able to understand why manners are SO important!  Here are 6 manners that are at the top of our good-manners list.

 

  1. “Thank you” is a word that both parents and The Little Gym instructors cannot stress enough!  A simple thank you sends a powerful message of gratitude. When someone does something for you, gives you a compliment, gives you a gift, etc. it is important to always say thank you. When a child is old enough, a good practice is for children to write their own personal thank you notes when receiving a gift or spending time at a friend’s house. A written note goes a long way!
  2. “Please” or “the magic word”, is an important tool for children to get what they want. Please is a great manner to learn for even children who are not yet talking. If a child wants something it is important for them to use their manners by expressing ‘please’ and following it up with a ‘thank you’.
  3. “Excuse me” or “pardon me”, at a certain age children should learn not to interrupt adults when they are having a conversation. Rather, they should learn to wait their turn or say ‘excuse me’ or ‘pardon me’ if they need to interrupt. These phrases also work when in public and your child needs to get around a person who may be in their way, or when your child bumps into someone by accident. By using ‘excuse me’ or ‘pardon me’ your child will not only be heard but will be doing this in a positive manner.
  4. “Hello” and “goodbye”; Greetings and goodbyes are basic functions of communication. Beginning at a young age children should learn the appropriate way to address people when they enter and leave a room. Greetings and goodbyes are a great way to teach children how to interact with one another.
  5. Table manners; starting at a very young age children can learn table manners. Starting when children begin eating solid foods they are often re-directed when throwing or spitting food. This helps children learn what is acceptable and what is not. When children get a bit older it is important for them to learn basic table manners; knowing how to use your utensils, asking for things to be passed when they are out of reach, and asking to be excused when they are finished with their meals. Basic table manners follow children throughout their lives and helps parents enjoy their mealtimes as well!
  6. Be kind to others; it is important for children to learn how to be kind and positive. Teaching children that mean words and teasing is hurtful helps a child understand the importance of kindness.

 

Practice makes perfect – keep practicing and reminding your child of the importance of having good manners. Be repetitive, if your child does not say please then simply make them ‘say the magic word’ and they will begin to catch on! Often times role-playing is a great way to have your child experience the appropriate way to act in certain situations. Great manners go a long way and it is best to begin good practices at a young age!