Language learning tips for gymnasts

Hi everyone! If you are reading this post, it's probably because you are both a gymnast and a language learner. That is exactly who this post is geared toward. I feel your pain, gymnasts (I'm not Gymnastical for nothing). I am also a gymnast who's balancing language learning with meeting my gymnastics goals. I also have this post in the Dutch forum because I fear that if I put it in the Duolingo forum, it will get lost with all the other posts there. Since it is relevant to gymnasts regardless of their target language, everytime I add a tree, I am going to put this post in that forum too. I know those last few lines were a little off deviated from the subject of this post but that's just to explain why it's in a language specific forum. So now let's get back on track here.

  1. SWS. You've heard the three letter acronym TWD (texting while driving) so SWSing is stretching while studying. We all have our flexibility goals and a deadline to have met them by and we (just like all other language learners) have our self imposed language goals and we tie ourselves to a schedule for that too. Sometimes the only way to meet all those goals on time is to multitask. Just do some stretches that will not interfere too much with your ability to concentrate and will not put your safety at risk by not focusing your attention entirely on the stretch. You might get some weird looks for being on your Duolingo in a split (or whatever else you decide to do) but it is good practice in both fields. Other stretches you can do are seal stretches, ankle rolls, really whatever you can do and multitask safely. You can also do the same thing with some conditioning exercises, especially in the core.

  2. Floor Music. If you're at the level or at the right gym where they allow you to pick your own floor music, choose a song in your target language. Even though you can only use instrumental music, just hearing the song will help you remember it and you'll more likely retain it well. Listening to music in your target language is a great way to learn your target language. Then on your own time, put the words you are unfamiliar with into Google Translate.

  3. Learn the Jargon. We all learn best when we can relate to the content. So learn the vocabulary in your target language for terms you use and hear in gymnastics. For example, next time you clean out your gym bag, make a note of what's supposed to be in there (ie- leotard, grips, etc) and learn the vocabulary for those things. Next time you have a gymnastics injury, describe it to a gymnast who knows your target language and have them give you the vocabulary to describe it (I know we never look forward to our injuries but they can be great learning experiences)

  4. Gymnastics in your target language. Gymnastics is not limited to the country you're from. You can find all sorts of things about gymnasts who know your target language. The Olympics is a great place to start with this. Olympians come from all over the world so odds are you will find several gold medalist gymnasts from countries that speak your target language. Also, watch gymnastics shows in your target language.

I hope that these tips help you as a language learner and a gymnast and if you have anymore questions about this, leave them in the comments below or post on my stream. Please, in the comments keep it connected to your language studies no matter how much gymnastics talk there is. Off topic discussion is not allowed in the forums. For example, comments like "can you do a post on back handspring tips" is considered off topic because nowhere is there a connection to language studies. On the other hand, comments like "can you give me the level 4 requirements and the vocabulary for them in language x" is acceptable.

Best of luck to all you gymnasts!


April 24, 2015


And even if gymnastics isn't your thing, you can always do more stuff in your target language :) For example, if you like to cook you can try to find recipes in your target language.

April 24, 2015

Very good point. Others should be posting threads about tips for language learners with THEIR hobbies.

April 24, 2015
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