Jodi Levine of Chappaqua and owner of Jodi’s Gym in Mt. Kisco and Manhattan, firmly believes that gymnastics is a great way to help children with special needs or who are on the autism spectrum because it incorporates many of the skills with which these children have difficulty.
The benefits of gymnastics include increased balance, strength, self-confidence, motor skills and spatial awareness.
Jodi loves to see the way the kids’ eyes light up when they enter the gym and the joy the parents have by taking their children to a safe and fun gymnastics program. Her current class was inspired by the parent of a child who had visited the gym as a birthday party guest and simply loved it. Plans for the summer include a social skills class for 3-4 year-olds which will combine a half-hour of class time with a social worker and then time in the gym where the kids can apply the skills they learned. The program focuses on progress, not perfection, with the goal of developing skills such as sharing, positive interaction with other children, taking turns, making friends and even dealing with frustration. Consultations and a parenting discussion will be provided by the social worker. For more info, visit www.jodisgym.com
– Michael Kohn