The club were eager to make changes to ensure all people could participate in gymnastics. With good intentions, the club developed a segregated class for children with disabilities, but they soon realised this was not allowing the participants to develop their skills or find a sense of belonging within the club.
They developed a club ethos – ‘More Than Gymnastics’ – to encompass all the elements that the Club can provide.
The club began to grow their membership base through Gym Motion, a pathway program for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. The class is coordinated by qualified coaches that take the time to get to know the participants and what works for each of them to get the most benefit out of their individual gymnastics experience. Each participant has a ‘safe space’ in the gym that they are encouraged to use if they start to feel overwhelmed.
Although the GymMotion is specific to children who have ASD, it also provides a Pathway into mainstream classes.
What happened next
Roleystone Gymnastics Club has had some great achievements, including:
- Considerably increasing their community profile
- Improving strategic connections
- State-wide promotional opportunities for the club
- Delivery of three public presentations including at the Department of Sport & Recreation’s Disability Sport Forum on the topic ‘Developing opportunities at a grass-roots level’
- Increase revenue streams & successful grant applications
- Improved parental engagement
- Revamp of pathway models to engage many new members
- Increased volunteerism and improved volunteer engagement
- Winners of the Gymnastics WA Club Excellence Awards