25 October 2021 - MEDIA RELEASE

Gymnastics Takes off in Early Childhood Centres



The partnership between Gymnastics WA and the University of Western Australia’s KIDDO Program continues to go from strength to strength.

Gymnastics WA received great news to start 2021 with Healthway committing support to help us partner with KIDDO to upskill gymnastics coaches and deliver Gym Warriors fundamental movement sessions to Early Childhood Education and Care services (ECECS) in WA and expand gymnastics programs in early childhood years.

Since launching in May 2021, Gymnastics WA’s Gym Warriors and UWA’s KIDDO program has made a phenomenal start in Early Childhood and Education Care centres. In the first three months of the program, 14 programs have been rolled out across seven centres in Perth. With a target of 10 programs for the year, Gym Warriors has made a blistering start in developing fundamental movement skills in early childhood participants!

Bloom Early Education, Yanchep was one of the first Early Childhood Centre’s to complete the program. Tina De Pedro, Centre Director was thrilled with the Gym Warriors pilot. “We have absolutely been loving it! The kids are loving it but the educators have been raving about it!”.

Leeming Child Care Centre have thoroughly enjoyed the KIDDO Gym Warriors program. “The sessions have been brilliant…each week Nikki has planned a different theme and has even noticed what was happening around the room and what the children were interested in, for example dinosaurs, transport, rainbows. There has been lots of variety for the children and the activities have been perfect for their age group and capabilities.  Nikki has been great at entertaining the children, with different songs, dances, and her communication with them is clear and professional.”

Thanks to Healthway, UWA’s KIDDO 3-hour online training is free of charge (RRP $199.00) for our accredited coaching community and upon completion coaches receive a KIDDO Certificate of Physical Literacy. Coaches have developed their skills, knowledge and resources and have had the opportunity to deliver Gym Warriors sessions in ECECs and provide a pathway to their local clubs. The Gymnastics WA accredited coaching community have embraced the opportunity to upskill with 93 coaches enrolled in the KIDDO program and 36 completing the certificate, thus far. With a target of 150 coaches over the two year period, coaches have jumped at this chance. 

Gymnastics WA’s Industry Development Manager, Nikki Colev is delighted with the pilot program thus far.  “The Early Childcare Centres are loving the Gym Warriors program. To see the development in the participants over the course of the program has been so fulfilling as a coach. The KIDDO online training has been terrific in learning new coaching techniques for fundamental movement and building lesson plans based on the latest research from UWA. Our Gym Warriors lesson plans have been developed to deliver age-appropriate skills and make it easy for coaches to upskill and broaden their knowledge. It’s exciting to see how well-received the program has been thus far.”

On Thursday, 30th September 2021, the State Gymnastics Centre was filled with Gym Warriors participants developing their fundamental movement for a dedicated photoshoot. Two Gym Warriors sessions were delivered to 25 children from the Gymnastics community by an accredited Gymnastics WA coach, all whilst capturing the smiles and fun of fundamental movement! Activities were age-appropriate and incorporated songs, music and an Auslan sign language experience. Images will be utilised across promotional material and digital platforms to showcase the partnership and further promote the program in the West Australian community in the second year of the partnership and beyond. Gymnastics WA are currently busy planning the second phase of the rollout and plan to start delivering in regional communities and engage new ECECs across WA.

   

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