South Hills Mom

a mom's guide to kid-friendly resources in the South Hills

Gymsport Athletic Center – Bridgeville

on January 6, 2014

One of my favorite places to take my little ones to blow off steam is Gymsport Athletic Center in Bridgeville.  With all the open space and opportunities for running, climbing, swinging, hanging, and jumping, it practically guarantees a nice, long afternoon nap!

We frequent Gymsport during Preschool Playtime, which is for ages 5 and under, Monday-Friday, 9:00am-noon.  There is also a Mini Open Gym, for ages 9 and under on Friday from 4:00-5:00pm, and Open Gym for ages 6 and up Wednesday 8:00-10:00pm and Friday 5:00-8:00pm.  The rate is $5/hour per child to play.

The first place my little girl always wants to go is up the stairs to a play area designed for toddlers and preschoolers.  There are tunnels to crawl through and a small trampoline built into the floor.  There’s also a balance beam and a small bar with a mat under it to practice hanging from.  But the best part of this room is obviously the slide and zip line…which dump kiddos right into a foam pit!  It took my daughter about 10 visits to Gymsport before she got the hang of the zip line, but now that she knows what to do, that’s ALL she wants to do!

This play area is in a slightly elevated room (accessible by stairs or a ramp).  Below this room is more room to play, with a rock climbing wall, tunnel, and miscellaneous toys like stuffed animals, hula hoops, scarves, beach balls, etc.

Other than this room, it’s an actual gymnastics gym!  For preschool playtime we have access to the floor area (which is great for running off energy, or playing with the aforementioned toys), the trampoline track where kids can jump into yet another foam pit, and an area with beams and bars designed for young children.  Children SHOULD NOT venture into the other parts of the gym with uneven bars, high balance beams, etc., since that equipment is meant for much older children.

My daughter really likes the beams and bars area, too.  There are rings to hang and swing from, a ladder to climb to access another bar to dangle from, balance beams of all kinds of thickness, and mats for tumbling.

We’ve been coming to Gymsport for over a year now.  As soon as your kiddo can walk there is something for him or her to do!  My son just turned one and isn’t walking yet, and while he enjoys crawling around on the different mats and chasing balls around the floor, I’m usually just scooping him up and keeping him away from things that he’s just too little for.  My daughter has always enjoyed running around like the crazy little girl that she is, but now that she’s just turned two, she’s really started to figure out how to use the equipment more meaningfully.

Be warned, though…your kids won’t be the only ones worn out at the end of your visit to Gymsport!  Like I mentioned before, this is an actual gymnastics gym, and children require a lot of attention and support to make sure they are using the equipment correctly.  Moms and Dads should expect to run around, lift kids to reach bars or zip lines, spot kids while climbing, and dig kiddos out of foam pits.  Dress appropriately – yoga pants and sweatpants are perfectly acceptable here (and socks, since you can’t wear shoes in the gym)!


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