Frequently Asked Questions

What is GymbaROO/KindyROO/AussieROO?

All the same thing! We go by different names in different countries….It’s a long story! What ever we are called, we are all about fun and learning!

GymbaROO is an Australian innovation and was founded by Margaret Sasse in Melbourne over 30 years ago. It was the first of its kind. It was quickly successful and today remains the largest in Australia. There are now approx 130 centres in the world, (90 in Australia).

The GymbaROO program is unlike any other program as we offer top quality parent education at the same time as offering babies and children the opportunities to develop their brains in readiness for learning in a number of ways, including: gross and fine motor development, visualisation skills, rhythm and music activities, coordination and strength activities, body awareness, motor planning and sequencing activities, visual & auditory skill development as well as the development of socialisation skills. Our programs are also designed to help babies and children integrate primitive reflexes, so important for future learning.

The GymbaROO classes are great fun and involve music, dance, exercise, massage, small equipment, musical instruments, parachutes and a fun weekly theme. During the class there is also time for the children to practise their motor skills on equipment which has been specially designed to maximize the neurophysiological development of 0-5year olds.

“Well to be honest, when you strip it all down, when you take away the fun children are having, when you take away the development benefits for the children – GymbaROO is really about parent/carer education.” (Margaret Sasse: Founder of GymbaROO)

There is a direct relationship between activities and the stimulation children receive when they are babies and very young children and their ability to do well at school. This is supported and borne out by extensive research. It has been shown that children’s neuro physiological development is vital for their ability to read and learn. GymbaROO provides a fun filled platform for parents and carers to gain greater knowledge of what this entails in order to maximise their child’s development.

Children are developing 24/7 not just for 45 minutes a week at GymbaROO, so what we really try to do is provide parents/carers with activities that can be done at home for the rest of the week. It is not just about providing activities, but also the ‘how and why’ those activities help the brain develop. We have a different handout every week for every different age group.

To find out the answers to more FAQ on GymbaROO click here: http://www.gymbaroo.com.au/mod.faq

To find out the answers to more FAQ on KindyROO click here: http://www.kindyroo.com.au/mod.faq

To find out more about AussieROO (USA) click here:www.aussieroo.us

What is BabyROO?

BabyROO is the name we give to our baby classes worldwide. These classes are divided into non mobile babies and mobile babies.

Click here to Learn more about BabyROO,

Click here to Watch a BabyROO class in action

Click here to Read more: Your Baby’s Developing Brain

Click here to Read more: Non Mobile BabyROO Milestones

Click here to Read more: Please don’t sit me until I sit myself

Click here to Read more: Crawling first

Click here to Read more about The Importance of Balance

Click here to Read more: Mobile BabyROO milestones

Why did we make the Active Babies Smart Kids TV series?

The Active Babies Smart Kids TV series has been created to continue GymbaROO’s pursuit of helping today’s children get off to the best start possible.

At GymbaROO & KindyROO we know that parents are a child’s first, most important and best teachers. Parents play such a crucial role in the early years. Well informed parents make more confident parents. Helping parents and carers to understand the importance of early childhood development is the key to assisting babies to develop into successful learners and competent adult

It had become obvious that with the explosion of technological advances the world had seen of late, that the ability to reach millions of parents with important information and great fun ideas to enhance early childhood development would now be possible and needed to be done.

How did we make the Active Babies Smart Kids TV series?

The series has been adapted by Dr Jane Williams and Bindy Cummings from GymbaROO’s highly acclaimed neuro-developmental programs.
Ideas were formulated and scripts were developed, written and rewritten.
It was a steep learning curve for all involved, us GymbaROO folk and the terrific production team from The Media Mix in Melbourne Australia lead by Rohan Robertson and Kristian Curcio. This sort of series, on this scale, had not been attempted before so we had no example to follow.

We put out a call to our Melbourne GymbaROO’s for cast members and were thrilled and very grateful to the parents and babies that came to be a part of this piece of GymbaROO history. All in all over 40 babies and their parents were involved. They formed the most delightful cast ever assembled.
Our wonderful and knowledgeable specialists were only too happy to contribute both their time and expertise, and their addition to the program is so very valuable.

Thanks to our cast and crew, (including our GymbaROO volunteers and our fantastic director -Danielle McAlpine), and a combination of know how and understanding from both a developmental and a production side, we ended up with our first 12 episodes.

We are simply delighted with the results and hope that you are too!

How long are the episodes and how many are there?

‘The BabyROO series’ includes 12 x 22min episodes

Who should watch this series?

The answer to this is easy!!….Anyone who has anything to do with looking after a baby (newborn to crawling)!! This series has been designed for parents – mums AND dads, grandparents, aunts, uncles, nannies, babysitters, educators of children, carers of babies, specialists…basically anyone who may be assisting with the care and development of your baby!

This series is not designed to replace the wonderful socialization, movement opportunities and learning parents and babies receive when they attend a GymbaROO centre however it gives parents the opportunity to reinforce what they have learned at their local BabyROO centre and remind them of the kinds of fun activities they can do at home with their baby to help with development. It also offers parents who are unable to attend our classes a great place to start!

Why watch this series?

This series will show you how to help your baby maximize their potential, and help to make sure they get the best opportunity to learn as much as there is to learn from each developmental stage they are going through. This will help ensure they build really solid foundations for a lifetime of learning. Babies who are provided with the right sorts of activities at the right ages and stages of development will benefit enormously – socially, emotionally and academically.

Having said that, as with everything to do with your baby, do what works for you and what you find you and your baby enjoy. As it is with all parenting advise you have been and will be given, you take what works for you and your baby and you leave the rest. Follow your instincts and your baby’s reactions. Try this series and see if it’s what you are after!

What is the series about?

The series covers the how and why of important developmental areas from tummy time to baby’s balance along with visual development, baby massage, exercises and much more. The episodes also include chats with early childhood specialists . The Let’s do BabyROO section of each episode encourages parents to join in with their baby to do baby exercises and dances to music, baby massage, activities to help with visual development, hearing and speech, baby balance, the inhibition of primitive reflexes and so much more.

Just like our BabyROO classes, our Active Babies Smart Kids TV series is all based on fun and learning together with joy and happiness.

Can I see an overview of the series?

Of Course!…………..

Episode Specialist
Introduction 5 min introductory video.

Overview of series

Dr Meredith Sheil
EPISODE 1 Tummy Time

Let’s Do BabyROO 1

Dr Meredith Sheil
EPISODE 2 Baby Exercises

Let’s Do BabyROO 2

Dr Meredith Sheil
EPISODE 3 Baby Massage
Let’s Do BabyROO 3
Pinky McKay
EPISODE 4 Baby Balance
Let’s Do BabyROO 4
Dr Jane Williams
EPISODE 5 Baby speech and hearing
Let’s Do BabyROO 5
Dr Luke Sammartino
EPISODE 6 Baby visionLet’s Do BabyROO 6 Dr Meredith
EPISODE 7 Baby Body awareness
Let’s Do BabyROO 7
Dr Jane Williams
EPISODE 8 Baby music and rhythm
Let’s Do BabyROO 8
Dr Jane Williams
EPISODE 9 Baby hand development
Let’s Do BabyROO 9
Dr Meredith Sheil
EPISODE 10 Baby reflexes
Let’s Do BabyROO 10
Dr Jane Williams
EPISODE 11 Baby feet development
Let’s Do BabyROO 11
Dr Luke Sammartino
EPISODE 12 The importance of crawling & creeping.
Introduction to Crawlers
Dr Jane Williams

Is there anything I should know before I start?

Before you finish registering to watch the Active Babies Smart Kids TV Series you will be led to a page labeled “Before you Start”. Read this carefully as it has everything you need to know before you join in with us for all the fun and learning.

Link to: “Before You Start”

Before you (or your baby’s carer) starts any massage on your own with your baby, please make sure you have read the Baby Massage Check List

Link to: Baby Massage check list:

Why is it important for parents and babies to watch this series and do BabyROO?

There are two key reasons – one involves the parents themselves, the other the babies:

1. The need for parent education is paramount if children are to be given the opportunity to develop to the best of their genetic potential – extensive research has demonstrated that knowledgeable parents care for their infants with greater competence and confidence. At BabyROO and throughout our Active Babies Smart Kids TV Series parents learn about the natural progression of early childhood development, how it provides the foundations for the more complex skills of learning and what types of activities are important and “expected” by the developing brain for healthy development. Parents of today’s society are somehow expected just to “know” what is important and how to assist their children’s healthy development – but there is precious little education available. Most parents do not have the time to be able to critically sort through the masses of information on the web – and BabyROO and our Active Babies Smart Kids TV Series provide well researched and documented information in accessible and easily understood ‘bites’ on all key developmental areas, along with activities that reinforce the given information – so that it is easier and way more fun to understand and learn.

2. While there are some who argue that babies and children don’t need any specific developmental activities, at GymbaROO we beg to differ! Today’s modern society often isolates babies from the very movement and sensory opportunities they need for healthy neurological development. They are restrained (often on their backs for long periods) in capsules, chairs, swings, bouncy nets, cots, play pens, walkers and many other types of containers! These containers deny infants the many sensory and movement experiences on which later learning is so dependent. Activities offered at BabyROO and throughout our Active Babies Smart Kids TV Series are designed to help babies gain the important sensory and motor stimulation required for learning. Babies cannot do this by themselves, so it is important that parents know what experiences are important and how to provide an environment in which these experiences can occur.

3. Babies also need opportunities to move and stimulate the connections being made in the brain that provide the foundations for later learning. Children whose message superhighways in their brain are not ready for learning will find activities such as drawing, painting, bead threading, puzzles, cutting out, word recognition, letter and numeral writing more difficult than those whose brain is mature and responding effectively and efficiently. The GymbaROO program is unlike any other program as it offers children the opportunities to fine tune their brains in readiness for learning in a number of ways, including: gross and fine motor development, visualisation skills, rhythm and music activities, coordination and strength activities, body awareness, motor planning and sequencing activities, visual and auditory skill development, as well as socialisation skills.

Is there a need for BabyROO and the Active Babies Smart Kids TV Series as a parenting tool compared to intelligence that a child acquires without assistance?

Organic, natural development is in today’s modern society a thing of the past. In truth, “natural development” no longer occurs because of all the interferences our modern society brings. GymbaROO really is about putting the “natural” back into the developmental opportunities!

Children’s development occurs as the brain creates the connections as it learns about the body, the world around it and learns to move in response. Many of the key opportunities that used to encourage “natural” development are no longer available to our children as a result of safety/litigation concerns, convenience and ultra busy lives; reduced opportunities to move and play – smaller blocks of land for living, parks with equipment that do not spin, sway or rock… we are only left with swings as moving equipment; lack of tummy time for infants; lots of “containers” into which our children are slept, carried, pushed, and constantly “held captive” – that prevent movement; too much “screen” time (computers, TV, ipods etc etc) and changes in diet (lots of processed, adulterated foods).

Today’s parents can be so busy, they just lack the time and often the knowledge about how all this impacts on the developing child’s brain. Historically or should we say in our natural evolutionary past, nature provided much of the stimuli, and we evolved to imbed these into our natural developmental processes.

A simple analogy: it is accepted as basic knowledge that play in baby animals is about developing later survival skills when they adults. So is it reasonable to take “natural” out of life and still expect our children to maximise their future learning abilities?

What sorts of results have been seen in school children who previously went through the GymbaROO/KindyROO/BabyROO program as babies and young children.

A study undertaken by Liz Duguid, a Scottish Early Childhood Educator who came to Australia on a Churchill Scholarship reported that children who had attended GymbaROO were far more likely to engage in physical education activities in middle childhood (6 – 12 years) than children of the general population.

A more recent pilot study undertaken in six low SES schools in Victoria, in which the GymbaROO movement program was implemented in years 1 – 4 showed statistically significant improvements in the reading and comprehension ability of children who had reading/learning difficulties when they participated in the movement program, in comparison to those learning challenged children who only engaged in “literacy” programs.

Teachers also reported improvements in concentration, behavior, socialisation skills, attention and general improvements in mood and self esteem. Even though the research program has been completed many of the teachers have continued it on their classrooms as it made teaching the children so much easier and more enjoyable. You can read the full report “No child should fail” or an overview of the report “Unlocking Potential” at: http://www.gymbaroo.com.au/mod.articles/S

How do I find my nearest BabyROO Centre?

For our centres and their timetables click here:

We have watched this series and want more, but we have no BabyROO centre near us, what can we do?

No centres near you? Look at our Distance Neuro Education Package

I am concerned about my baby’s development, what should I do?
If you are concerned about any area of your baby’s development we suggest you seek an opinion from your local baby health care professional. If your instincts tell you that you need a second opinion, get one!

To read more on the topic “Concerned about your child” please click here http://www.gymbaroo.com.au/contents/concerned-about-your-child

My baby/child skipped the crawling/creeping stage of development. What can I do?

If your baby didn’t crawl or creep what we suggest is firstly, don’t worry, it is not uncommon. Crawling and creeping does help with the development of learning skills, but if your baby did not do either, there are many ways to help them get the same stimulation that they would have received during this crawling/creeping stage. For example you can incorporate these crawling/creeping actions when your babies are a little older into toddler and pre-schooler play… creep like tigers and make tunnels to crawl through… play on climbing equipment (supervised!). When your baby is around 2 and 3 years old they will absolutely love playing games where they pretend to be animals. This is an excellent time to encourage lots of crawling and creeping.

Episode 12 of our Active Babies Smart Kids TV Series has a discussion with one of our experts, Dr Jane Williams, who talks about exactly this. Lots of things help with future learning… love and cuddles, reading to your child, social engagement, and healthy food. Creeping, crawling and lots of movement opportunities are also an important part of the learning recipe.

When will you make the next series ?

That will depend on the success of this series. If this series is immediately successful and attracts sponsors, then the answer will be “soon”! As you can imagine, a series like this costs money, a lot of it. We have managed to finance this one, however will need backing to continue. We sincerely hope this happens!

What if I have other Questions or would like to give some feedback?

If you have any other questions you may have these answered by
E-mail: office@gymbaroo.com.au or
Phone: 1800 Gymbaroo (1800 496 766)
We would love your feedback, so please feel free to let us know what you think and any ideas for improvement!

I don’t live in Australia or New Zealand. How can I access this series?

The series will be made available to countries other than Australia and New Zealand in due course.

In the meantime you can purchase the Distance-Education program materials that provide you with lots of great ideas for baby activities that you can do with your little one at home.

Look at our Distance Neuro Education Package

Are there GymbaROO/KindyROO Franchise opportunities?

Toddler Kindy GymbaROO franchises offer an unrivalled opportunity to establish, or buy an existing business with potential to grow.

The rewards are multiple and importantly, offer both enjoyment and satisfaction. ( FCC Registration No F/124)

To find out more about franchise opportunities click here: http://www.gymbaroo.com.au/contents/gymbaroo-franchises

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