Every four years, everyone the world over becomes a gymnastics enthusiast for a few weeks during the Summer Olympic Games. Google Trends shows spiking interest in the balance beam during those times. However, the stars we see flying from the bars and beams like Simone Biles have trained from an early age to be there.
Gymnastics stars usually start as kids at home, doing cartwheels in the backyard and balancing along the curb. As a kid I remember one girl of about 7 standing at the very top of the roof while her parents freaked out. Apparently she loved to climb onto high things and balance. I wonder where she is now?
Does your child show interest or promise in gymnastics?
A balance beam for kids to practice at home provide a great launching point for kids to start developing their skills. Home gymnastics equipment needs to be well constructed, not break the bank, and perhaps most important, it needs to be safe. We took a good look at some of the most best balance beams for kids available, read on for our recommendations.
Good For Young Kids – Tumbl Trak Sectional Floor Balance Beam
Parents love the Tumbl Trak Floor Balance Beam as an introduction to kids gymnastics practice at home. This beginner balance beam combines safety, durability and affordability to make it the perfect entry option, and it is quite inexpensive.
It has a 4 inch width on top, just like the pros, but tapers to 8 inches on the bottom. This incline mitigates those nasty spills.
The 4 foot length limits the number of steps possible, but works best for home in a confined play room. For more flexibility buy 2 and connect them with the velcro end to create an 8 foot practice beam.
The foam and suede material combine to make a lightweight home practice beam, firm but forgiving on the landing and corners. One of the best features of this product is that it is very well padded to mitigate the possibility of injury.
The only negative thing we can say about the Tumbl Trak 4 Foot Balance Beam is that the lightweight material and vinyl bottom can slip around. A good tumbling or gymnastics mat placed underneath will solve this problem while providing an extra 2 inches of cushion on hard floors.
- Top quality and well padded
- Join 2 or more together with velcro on each end
- Stable and safe
- Very affordable
Best Gymnastics Beam for Intermediates – The Z-Athletics Folding Low Beam (9’)
Usually starting at the age of 5 or 6 years old, young gymnasts have walked and played enough on the equipment to start trying out stunts. A training beam for home allows for safer and less terrifying practice of those first few tricks. This includes back walkovers, cartwheels, handstands as well as jumps, leaps and turns.
Of course, this training beam sits on the ground, so mounts and dismounts can’t be attempted with it.
A free Gymnastics Skills Coaching Handbook outlines each of the beginner leaps and how to spot for them. The Z-Athletic Folding Training Low Beam offers the perfect chance to practice at home until they nail these moves. The suede surfacing and high density foam core delivers a real Olympic beam feel. The slight taper gives a more authentic feel than the above beginner balance beam. The Z Athletics Folding Training Low Beam takes home gymnastics to the next level.
- PREMIUM QUALITY - Built with high-density firm cross-linked polyethylene foam core gives gymnasts a solid support to perform better because their feet will not sink.
- CONFIDENCE BUILDER - At only 2in off the ground, this beam is a perfect confidence builder! New gymnasts can try more moves without fear of a long fall like they’d experience from an Off Ground Balance Beam.
- FOLDABLE, PORTABLE, & STORABLE - Beam folds in half for easy handling and storage and its total weight is only 4lbs. Easy to carry and so portable! Take the beam with you or fold and store in seconds.
Best Tumbling and Landing Gymnastics Mats on Amazon
Kids are often energetic, fearless, and not the most coordinated. This ensures that they will end up on the floor often, so your only option is cushioning the landing. Amazon sells a number of cheap gymnastics mats that can do wonders for minimizing the impact of these falls. Take for example this Folding Exercise Aerobics Mat. Mats like this are also useful for stretching and yoga. The mat cushions with 2 inches of high density foam, and folds out to an ample 4 foot by 10 foot rectangle. The pleather material makes for a grippy surface that will not slide. These gymnastics mats perfectly complement the 9 foot practice balance beam pictured above. If your kids or grandkids have taken to tumbling or wrestling, quality tumbling mats will cushion the inevitable impacts for years to come.
Tumbl Trak and Z Athletics Kids Home Balance Beams for Sale
With all the great products available for sale on Target, Amazon and Walmart, it’s easier than ever to get started with practicing gymnastics at home. Kids can enjoy balance practice while having a ton of fun and imagining themselves at the Olympics. We have found basic tumbling, floor exercises and low balance beam to be the most feasible gymnastics exercises for home gyms, but any gymnastics still include danger of injury. Stilts and po-go sticks are fun too, but with a higher risk of falling. Please research all safety recommendations and precautions before using any of these products, and always supervise or spot when they are in use. For less dangerous athletic activities for kids, check out fidget spinners and cup stacking.