3 Valentine’s Day Challenges to Try in the Gym!
Not planning a romantic candle-lit dinner on the 14th of February? Neither are we. But Valentine’s Day isn’t just for couples. Here are three ways you can celebrate the sport you love!
The Card Trick
A hearty way to warm up, or build strength, this technique is used by athletes in many different sports. It’s also one way to ensure you’ll be looking at a card covered in hearts this Valentine’s Day!
The way it works is simple. Choose four different exercises or skills. Then assign one suit to each of them. For example diamonds might be tuck jumps, spades “W” jumps, hearts star jumps and clubs squat jumps. Gymnasts then take it in turns drawing a card from the pack to find out what exercise they’ll be doing next. 10 of hearts? 10 star jumps!
Cards can be drawn in quick succession for a warm up game or conditioning.
Alternatively you could spread the card drawing out over a whole session or week. Each suit could represent an event (Bars, Beam, Floor, Vault) and the number drawn could be that day’s goal for how many routines or key skills are to be practised/completed!
Get creative and change what each suit represents as often as you like.
Roses vs Violets
“Roses wear red, violets wear blue, the team that sticks best, that prize is for you!”
This works best with teams of 3 or more. Essentially the Roses compete against the Violets, on every event, to stick as many key skills as possible. Coaches nominate what those key skills are for each event, then each team can have as many attempts to stick as they would like, within the given time period for that event (e.g. You may have 25 minutes on each event during a 2 hour total gym session).
For example, the coach may choose the following key skills on each event:
Bars – straddle undershoots
Beam – cartwheels
Floor – roundoff flicks
Vault – handsprings
The Roses and Violets then complete as many stuck (landed perfectly with no foot movements or wobbles afterwards at all) versions of those skills as they can when they visits those events. The coach marks down the team score as they go and at the end awards the prize to the team with the most sticks!
Make this more interesting by choosing multiple key skills to try and stick on each event.
Make it more personalised by choosing different key skills for each person depending on their level.
Make it more difficult by making a “key skill” a whole routine that must be stuck, or by imposing limits on the number of attempts each team can have at each key skill.
Oh, and one last rule, each Roses team member wearing a red Zone leotard, or Violets team member wearing a blue Zone leotard, scores an extra 10 points each!
This one is perfect to create a gymnastics themed Valentine’s Day photo! (#Instalove) The challenge is to create the shapes listed below, as a team, by arranging yourself across the Floor mats in different positions (standing or lying down). Coaches (AKA art directors), it helps to get as high up as possible, on a block or Beam, to help arrange the gymnasts into each shape, as you will be able to see the shapes better from above!
Shapes to Try:
- An X
- An O
- A figure of eight
- A flower
- The first letter of your Gym Club’s name (Bonus points if you can do a whole word!)
- A star
- A heart!
We’d love to hear about which challenges you try, or see your group photos! Tweet us (@zonegymnastics / @jempin515) or tag us on instagram (@zonegymnastics / @jennifer.pinches) and we will repost our favourites!