INDIANAPOLIS, Feb. 19, 2013 – Ten U.S. clubs will have the opportunity to participate in a new program to help clubs increase enrollment, further develop their class offerings, and offer a fun transition for current students who are looking to diversify. Trampoline gained a lot of exposure leading up to and during the 2012 Olympic Games in London, and triggered interest in the sport. USA Gymnastics' Trampoline and Tumbling Program is launching a pilot program to incorporate competitive trampoline into the curriculum in gyms across the nation and to expand its Olympic pipeline.
"Trampoline is gaining in popularity and is a natural addition to the classes offered at gymnastics clubs," said Susan Jacobson, director of USA Gymnastics trampoline and tumbling program. "Kids love bouncing, and trampoline combines traditional gymnastics moves with the 'wow' factor that kids enjoy."
USA Gymnastics Trampoline and Tumbling will identify 10 gymnastics clubs in 2013-14 to participate in the pilot program and become Trampoline Development Centers. In 2013, clubs may apply by either March 1 or July 1 to be among the first four clubs selected. In 2014, three clubs will be chosen following the two deadline dates, March 1 and July 1.
USA Gymnastics will work with the selected clubs to incorporate trampoline into their gyms by providing a wide range of support during a three-month period to make it simple: three monthly visits by national trampoline coaches and staff; clinics to educate club staff on scheduling, coaching and teaching trampoline, basic skills, conditioning and flexibility, and progressions; available talent identification development programs; interactive coach and athlete training sessions; marketing materials; and operational guidelines and curriculum support. Member clubs and registered businesses of USA Gymnastics are eligible to apply, and additional information and the application are available online at usagym.org/tdc.
Athletes of all ages and body types can enjoy and benefit from trampoline, which also enhances skill development across all gymnastics disciplines. Trampoline may also retain athletes who are looking for something different from gymnastics or need to adjust to accommodate outside scheduling challenges. Additionally, the artistic gymnastics and trampoline competitive seasons complement one another, which makes it is possible for an athlete to participate in both.
"We have found that trampoline provides a fun segue for gymnasts who are looking for a change and it keeps them involved in the gym," said Jacobson, whose goal is to expand the number of clubs that offer both gymnastics and trampoline.
Many gym clubs in the U.S. already have trampoline as part of their programming, which has proven to be very successful.