When putting together this years gymnastics gift guide, I wanted to keep in mind the results of the recent GymnasticsHQ survey. More than half of the respondents wanted to know more about practicing gymnastics at home. So this year there is a larger expanded section of gifts for practicing at home. There are also gymnastics stocking stuffer ideas, gymnastics clothing gifts, books, and room decor among the 70+ gymnast gift ideas in this years guide.
Gymnastics Stocking Stuffer Gift Ideas
Here are some gymnast stocking stuffer gift ideas.
I Love Gymnastics Bottle Cap Necklaces: These I Love Gymnastics bottle cap necklaces are a cute addition to your gymnast’s wardrobe.
No Crease Lace & Solid Hair Ties: These no crease hair ties come in a pack with many colors, and most importantly, don’t pull at your gymnast’s hair!
Athletic Tape: This pack of colored athletic tape is such a fun gift idea. Gymnasts are going to go through tape, especially when they rip their hands–why not make it a little more fun with colored tape.
Roll of White Athletic Tape: If your gymnast isn’t into the colored athletic tape, then white athletic tape makes a great stocking stuffer.
Mini Headbands: I LOVE these Under Armour mini headbands, and I know many gymnasts that love them too. They will help keep your gymnast’s hair out of her face when she wears them during her workout with her ponytail.
Suddora Wristbands or 4 Pack of Wristbands: Wristbands are a must for wearing with grips so that your gymnast’s wrists don’t get rubbed raw. Either of these wristbands are great options for a stocking stuffer.
Lip Balm: Bonne Bell Lip smackers lip balm makes a great stocking stuffer that your gymnast can throw in her gym bag to ease her chapped lips from the dry gym air.
Rainbow Pack of Pre-Wrap: Believe it or not, this rainbow pack of pre-wrap was the single most popular item on last year’s gift guide.
Fruit-Scented Nail Polish Remover Pads: These cool fruit-scented nail polish remover pads are a perfect stocking stuffer. Your gymnast can throw them in her gym bag for when she forgets to take off her nail polish before meets.
Rhinestone GYMNAST Stretch Headband: This cotton stretch headband is great for pulling back your beginner gymnast’s hair, or for your gymnast to wear when she isn’t in the gym. And it comes in lots of colors!
Practice Gymnastics at Home
The results of the recent GymnasticsHQ reader survey are that 50% of you want to learn more about how to practice gymnastics at home. Because of this, I decided to expand this section in the gift guide this year. There are big pieces of home gymnastics equipment, as well as smaller accessories.
Beginning Gymnastics for Girls Video: This beginning gymnastics for girls video features Steve Nunno, a two-time Olympic coach. The video has a little bit of an old-school feel, but what he goes over is very relevant. He takes you through the skill and progressions on each of the events. This would be a great video to watch after you purchase home gymnastics equipment to help beginner gymnasts figure out what to practice.
Tumbl Trak Junior Kip Bar with Junior Practice Mat: I used to recommend a smaller less-sturdy bar for beginners, and only recommended the Kip Bar to higher-level gymnasts. However, I think this Junior Kip Bar is a perfect home gymnastics bar for all levels. It is only slightly more expensive than a less-sturdy bar, and it will grow with your gymnast better. There aren’t many skills a gymnast can do at home with less-sturdy versions, but this Kip Bar lets the gymnast practice many skills. Because the bar has two additional cross supports, your gymnast can perform skills like kips and back hip circles. You will need a mat to cover the supports to make it safe. But you would need a mat with any bar. Beginner gymnasts won’t need the bar to be stabilized any further than how it comes. For more advanced gymnasts to do more advanced skills, you can further stabilize the bar with a piece of plywood.
Pull Up Bar: Pull-up bars are great for helping gymnasts increase their upper-body strength at home. Your gymnasts can do pull-ups, leg-lifts and other conditioning exercises on this bar.
Parallettes: Parallettes are useful for more advanced gymnasts to be able to practice handstands at home on them. This leads up to a gymnast being able to learn giants. However, parallettes aren’t only for more advanced gymnasts. You can check out a drill for learning press handstands using parallettes.
Tumbl Trak Folding Panel Mat: If you were going to buy only one gift for your gymnast to practice gymnastics at home, I would recommend buying a panel mat. It’s the most versatile piece of gymnastics equipment you can have at home. Your gymnast can do strength and conditioning exercises on it, practice beginner tumbling skills and use it to do drills for more advanced skills. Check out 25 videos for practicing gymnastics at home, and almost all of them use a panel mat.
Tumbl Trak Cartwheel Mat: A cartwheel mat is a great gift for preschool and beginner gymnasts. Once side has hand and feet prints to help your gymnast figure out where to put them for a cartwheel. And the other side has a line drawn like a beam, so your gymnast can practice walking, jumping and scales on the line.
Developing Leaps and Jumps Video: This video is by Tammy Biggs (click on the link to see excerpts of her videos), who I have seen at gymnastics clinics and is an absolutely amazing coach. She has been a member of the women’s national team coaching staff since 1986. Many of the drills in this video your gymnast should be able to do at home on a panel mat.
Kettlebell: Kettlebells are great for strengthening the whole body, particularly the core. Many times the reason gymnasts can’t get a particular skill is because of a lack of strength. Here is a video by elite gymnastics coach Mary Lee Tracy using kettlebells to improve core strength for different body positions you need on beam. And if you scroll down to video #22 “Kettle Bells” you will see exercises using kettlebells that will help your gymnasts learn a standing back tuck.
Jump Rope: Jumping rope is a great exercise for overall physical health. Jumping rope on beam is a conditioning exercise that helps your gymnast improve her balance. Mary Lee Tracy recommends jumping rope on beam as a way to improve the height of your gymnast’s jumps on beam. Here is a video of different exercises you can do jumping rope (video #25) on the beam.
Low Beam: This Norberts low beam is upholstered with the same suede as those used in official competition. That gives it the feel of the high beam, with the safety of a low beam. It’s also the same width as those used at meets. Your gymnast can practice basics at home on this beam, along with some beam drills for learning more advanced skills.
Exercise Band: Theraband exercise bands can be used for strength training and are also frequently used for drills for gymnastics skills. Check out the videos of exercise bands being used in drills for back extension rolls, press handstands, kips and back handsprings.
Hand Glove Weights: Want to help your gymnast improve her floor and beam routines? Tammy Biggs, who has previously coached Olympic gymnasts, recommends doing dance throughs with hand glove weights. See a video example here, scroll down to the video titled “Dance Through with Weights”.
Sliders: Sliders are another accessory recommended by Tammy Biggs. And they can be used in drills for a variety of skills: press handstands, aerials, casts and kips. And if you’re interested in other ways to use them, check out Tammy Biggs’ video Conditioning, Shaping & Flex with Sliders. If she uses them to train future members of the National team, then they are good enough for me!
Gold Medal Gymnastics Drills Video featuring Amanda Borden : This video, Gold Medal Gymnastics Drills Video: Beam, has Olympic gymnast Amanda Borden teaching beam drills. You can see a clip of the video here.
Foam Floor Beam: This Nastia Liukin Pink Suede Foam floor beam is an excellent alternative to a low beam. Your gymnast can use it to practice early fundamentals.
Light Weights: One of the main things that makes a gymnast successful is how strong she is. Using light weights at home for strength exercises is one way to help your gymnast improve at home, without actually doing any gymnastics skills.
These gifts are basic gymnast gear and essentials.
Drawstring Grip Bags: These grip drawstring bags are made out of a material similar to what some leotards are made with. These are an inexpensive grip bag and they come in a variety of different color combinations.
Destira Leotards: Destira has high-quality leotards at great prices. I also think they have really fun, unique designs.
Danskin Leotards: I thought this pink sparkle leotard was so cute when I saw it on Amazon. Danskin makes inexpensive leotards great for beginner gymnasts.
adidas Gymnastics Grip Bag: This adidas grip bag is a cute alternative to traditional grip bags–and will help your gymnast keep her grips separate from others. I love the shiny material. It comes in pink, blue and black.
Matching Doll Set Leotards: With a matching doll set leotard you get a leotard in the size that will fit your child, and a matching doll leotard so they can be “twins”. I think this is a great gift for younger gymnasts and Destira has over 64 leotards that will match with a doll version. (Click the link/Shop Now/Leotards/Matching Doll Sets)
Rip Guardian: Rip Guardian is a great gift for more advanced gymnasts that get rips. It’s a wax-like substance that covers the rip and allows the gymnast to continue to work out without the pain. It also helps to prevent infection by keeping sweat and chalk out of your gymnast’s open wound.
Grips: If your gymnast is starting to tear her hands on the bars then she might be ready to start wearing grips. Grips protect gymnast’s hands when they start learning more advanced skills. Check out my guide to buying grips online.
Gym Rat Wear
Here are some of my favorite gymnastics clothing gifts this season.
Eat. Sleep. Gymnastics. Repeat. Sweatshirt: This is such a cute gymnastics sweatshirt, given that team gymnasts probably always feel like they are in the gym.
This is My Handstand Shirt: This “This is my Handstand Shirt” Tee has been one of the most popular items on GymnasticsHQ this year. It comes in 10 different colors and runs a little small, so order up a size!
Gymnastics Capri: These comfy black gymnastic capri sweatpants are the perfect thing for your gymnast to wear over her leotard when she goes to the gym in the winter.
Wild about GYMNASTICS Hoodie: This soft Wild About Gymnastics hoodie sweatshirt is another perfect thing for your gymnast to wear over her leotard in the winter. And the neon pink, silver metallic and black design is perfect for pre-teen gymnasts.
Warning Gymnast Could Flip At Any Moment Shirt: This “Warning Gymnast Could Flip at Any Moment” Tee comes in 14 different colors.
Black Rhinestone Shorts: These TumbleWear black rhinestone biker shorts are great for your gymnast to wear over her leotard during practice. I love the shooting star rhinestone design. The material is a soft velour.
Sparkle Design Gymnastics Pants: These Lizatards Sparkle Design gymnastics yoga-style pants are great for wearing over your leotard on the way to gymnastics class.
This is My Handstand Shirt Tank: This “This is My Handstand Shirt” racerback tank can be worn at the gym over a leotard or when away from the gym. It comes in 4 different colors.
Black Gym Shorts: These TumbleWear plain black gym shorts are great for every day gym wear. If your gymnast likes to wear shorts over her leo during practice, I’m sure she will be wearing these constantly!
Heart of Gymnastics Tee: This t-shirt has the word “Gymnastics” written in the shape of a heart with sparkly letters. This is a great shirt for your gymnast to wear to school and show off her love of the sport. It comes in 3 different colors (black, pink and white) and runs a little small.
Kids Thermal Compression Leggings / Tights: These leggings are great for your gymnast to wear to the gym and keep on during the warm-up–especially if you live somewhere that gets cold! These leggings have a soft fleecy material inside, and the compression fit improves blood flow to your muscles. They come in 9 different colors.
Drawstring Gymnastics Bag: This is a popular bag for gymnasts to bring to the gym. It’s the perfect size to hold her grip bag, a bottle of water, and any other small items she brings to practice.
Keep Calm and Be a Gymnast Cell Phone Case: I love the rainbow colors on this “Keep Calm and Be a Gymnast” cell phone case.
Gymnast Water Bottle: This BPA-free water bottle has “Gymnast” on the front in glitter paint. It comes in 8 different color combinations. A perfect gift your gymnast can use every time she goes to the gym.
Gymnast Key Chain: This canvas key chain has “Gymnastics” written on it. If you’re gymnast is of driving age this would be a great gift. Or for younger gymnasts to attach to their gym bags.
Gymnastics Themed Scrapbook Kit: This gymnastics themed scrapbook kit is a perfect gift for your creative, artistic gymnast to save her gymnastics memories in a scrapbook. It has gymnastics themed paper and stickers.
Personalized Gymnast Ornament: I think this ornament is so cute! It’s made of sparkling clear acrylic, has a gymnast on it, and your gymnast’s name written on top. It also has some gems at the bottom and a ribbon on top. This is part of Amazon’s new handmade section; you can personalize the name and ribbon color.
Gymnastics Photo Album: If your gymnast is crafty then maybe this is the gift for her. This photo album will let your gymnast safely store her gymnastics photos.
Evolution Gymnastics Sticker: I think this evolution gymnastics sticker would be a great gift that could go in the rear window of your car. However, it can also be stuck on walls and binders and comes in different colors and sizes. Update: The evolution sticker appears to be sold out. I’ve linked to all the gymnastics decals.
Keep Calm and Do Gymnastics Personalized Cell Phone Case: This “Keep Calm and Do Gymnastics” phone case can be customized with your gymnast’s name or any other text. And it comes in 8 different colors!
Gymnastics Books and Movies
Grace, Gold, and Glory My Leap of Faith by Gabby Douglas: This autobiography by Gabby Douglas is a story about her faith, perseverance and determination to achieve her dreams. It’s been called “a must-read for teen athletes”, “Very Inspiring” and a “wholesome, positive book for young readers”.
Mind Gym : An Athlete’s Guide to Inner Excellence by Gary Mack and David Casstevens: I’m in the middle of reading this book right now, and so far it’s very good. I’m reading it to write an article on gymnast mental blocks. This book is motivational, while describing how mental toughness is essential if you want to be a successful athlete. Gary Mack is a successful sports psychologist that has helped the best players in a variety of sports, and he shares the techniques and exercises he uses to”help elite athletes build mental muscle”.
Stick It: Stick It is a gymnastics movie from the writer of Bring it On. It’s an inspiring movie for tweens and young adults.
Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell: If I could recommend one book for young adults/adults to read it would be Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers. In it Gladwell details what makes high-achievers different. He has easy-to-digest anecdotes throughout the book that basically back up his hypothesis that hard work and a little bit of luck are what has made the world’s most successful people. And he describes how you need 10,000 hours to become a master at something. It really is a must read for sports and life.
DK Readers: First Day at Gymnastics: This book is great for young gymnasts learning to read. DK Readers is a learning-to-read program that combines photographs with age-appropriate stories.
Gabby Douglas Story: This movie about Gabby Douglas, starring her, is about her moving away from her hometown and family in order to pursue the Olympics. It’s an inspirational and moving story. I’ve heard stories of younger gymnasts watching this movie over and over.
Letters to a Young Gymnast by Nadia Comaneci: Nadia Comaneci’s memoir details how she “found the inner strength to become a world-class athlete at such a young age”. Romanian-born Comaneci was the first person in Olympic history to earn a perfect score in gymnastics at just 14 years old. She describes some of the years she trained with legendary coach Bela Karolyi and his intensive training requirements. She also describes some of the conditions at the time in Communist Romania, giving the book an historical aspect.
Raising the Bar by Gabrielle Douglas: Raising the Bar is Gabby Douglas’ latest book which features a day-to-day look at her world. It includes tips on how to “raise the bar on your life and accomplish your dreams”. It’s been called a “great book for aspiring gymnasts”.
Gymnast Room Decor
Here are some of my favorite gifts to help your gymnast decorate her room!
Gymnastics Zone Sign: This is a cute sign for your gymnast to hang on her bedroom door, or inside her room. A great way for her to personalize her space easily.
Reach for the Stars Gymnastics Quote Wall Decal: This inspirational quote decal says ” Jump off the beam, flip off the bars, follow your dreams, and Reach for the Stars.”. It comes in 9 different colors.
Gymnast Medal Hanger: This gymnast medal hanger is another popular gymnast gift. Gymnasts usually accumulate medals from the meets they compete in throughout the year. This is a great way to display them. It comes in 6 different colors.
Custom Wall Decal: I love this gymnast wall decal that you can customize with your gymnast’s name. It comes in 4 different sizes.
Inspirational Poster Pack: This poster pack has 5 inspirational posters all featuring Olympians- Gabby Douglas, Nastia Liukin, Shawn Johnson, Alicia Sacramone, Paul Hamm. This is a great gift to gear up for the 2016 Summer Olympics next year!
Gymnast Lit Box: I think this is the perfect gift for gymnasts. It’s an 8*8*3 glass box filled with sparkle mesh and lights. It is customized on the front with your gymnast’s name. You can choose from 14 different colors for the ribbon and the name. It will look so pretty in your gymnast’s room!
I love Gymnastics Wall Decal: This I love Gymnastics wall decal is simple and cute for a girls bedroom.
Gymnastics Collage Wall Decal: Wall decals are always some of the most popular gymnastics gifts when I put together gift guides on GymnasticsHQ. The decals are removable. This gymnastics word collage wall decal is a great way for your gymnast to decorate her space. It has the words “Gymnastics”, “Back Handspring”, “Chalk”, ” All Around”, “Flip”, “Tumble”, “Meet”, Stick It” and “Dismount”.
Gymnastics Street Sign: This gymnastics street sign is another great inexpensive gift your gymnast can use to decorate her room.
Gabby Douglas Quote Wall Decal: This wall decal has this quote by Gabby Douglas, ” Hard days are best because that’s when CHAMPIONS are made.”. I love this as every day inspiration for your gymnast.
I know sometimes it can be hard to find gymnastics gifts, so hopefully this years gift guide helped!