Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Can I participate if I don't live in Cambridge?
Yes!  While this program did start as a way to provide gymnastics training to the Cambridge community, everyone is welcome to participate.

How old are the participants in the program?
Everyone ages 11 - 111 are welcome, although our participants currently range in age from 11 to 63 years old.  However, most of our participants are high school students and young adults.  Younger children might find a better fit at a gymnastics school specializing in early childhood development. Please check out the 
Cambridge Recreation Program at the War Memorial Center to learn more about their gymnastics program for children ages 2 - 9 years old.
If you are under 18 years old, you will need to have your parent or guardian sign the Waiver form (available on the Registration & Contact page) before you will be allowed to participate.  Therefore we strongly suggest that you print one out before coming in so that you can get it signed in advance.

How good are the participants in the program?
Our participants range in ability from first-time beginners, to former elite-level gymnasts - i.e. there is space for everyone!  However, here are a few guidelines for beginners: 
- You should try to start in one of the Beginner Classes, and you must start there if you are a First-time Beginner.
- The Mixed Classes on Mondays are open to everyone, but it helps if you have at least a little experience.
- You must start with the Structured Class before given permission to participate in Open Gym, unless you are a former competitive gymnast.
- You are not allowed in the Thursday night Advanced Class without an invitation (you must be working on handsprings to qualify for the Advanced Class).

Do I need to pre-register if I go to MIT?
Not in the sense to get access to the facility, but yes in order to get covered by our insurance, put into our database, and sign the online Waiver.  It only take a few minutes, and makes everyone's lives easier if you do it in advance.

When do I need to pay?
You need to pay the Insurance Fee online when you register, and then the class fees are paid in the gym.  If you are just dropping-in, then you need to pay the Drop-In Fee every time when you come in.  If you are buying a bundle, then you need to pay for the entire bundle amount your buying up-front - i.e. bring in cash, check, or credit card with you to your first session of the bundle.  All payments are due at the beginning of each practice.

I paid for my class/bundle with a check, but it has not been deposited yet.  Is everything OK?
Yes.  We collect checks for a couple weeks before making a lump deposit.  So sorry if this causes any inconvenience.

What do I need to bring with me?
- An ID to show the person behind the desk at the turnstiles.
- Gym clothes that move with you but aren't restrictive (i.e. really baggy clothing as well as tight street clothing are both problematic).
- A way to tie back your hair if it gets in your face.
- A water bottle, although there is a water fountain out in the hallway.
- Any braces or splints you need to wear, like an ankle brace or wrist guards.
- For former and current gymnasts, grips and floor music if you have them.

What shouldn't I take onto the floor with me?
- Loose jewelry is not safe to wear while doing gymnastics, and you will be asked to remove it before you participate.  Stud earrings and rings (i.e. wedding bands) are OK, but it's always safest to remove all jewelry (for both the gymnast and the coach!).
- You should not wear socks or shoes while doing gymnastics; socks can be slippery, and shoes can limit your ability to jump properly.
- Gum-chewing is not allowed.

What kinds of skills do you work on in the Class?  And is it OK to start the Class now in the middle of the session?
We work primarily on basic tumbling skills, but with a strong focus on technique, body position, and body awareness.  We try to keep things interesting, by changing the lesson from week-to-week, and catering to the different students in each class.  However, since beginners are welcome to join at any time, we very often start with standard basics.  We gauge the overall level of each class by assessing each of the participants, and then teach the most appropriate lesson for everyone.  Progressions are a normal part of teaching gymnastics, and we will always try to individualize the lesson for each student.

What does "Class & Open Gym" mean?
That means that there is both a Structured Class going on as well as people who are just doing their own workout in Open Gym.  Everyone works respectfully around one another.  Even if you are not taking the Class, you are welcome to ask me questions about what you are doing.  We are happy to provide feedback (and sometimes it may even be unsolicited :) ).

What is "gym etiquette"?
Gym etiquette is how we all behave respectfully of everyone else in the gym.  Some specifics to know are always keeping an eye out for what's going on around you.  This applies both to not walking in front of (or sometimes behind) someone who is about to do something, as well as being aware if you are in the way of someone who needs to use the space you're in (like people tumbling on the diagonal).  Gym etiquette also applies to not treating the gym like a singles' bar, and not ogling anyone in their gym attire.