1. Appreciate the Risk. Participation in gymnastics, even under the best conditions, carries with it a reasonable assumption of risk. Appreciate the fact that improper conduct of this activity can result in catastrophic injury, paralysis or even death.
2. Be Supervised. Every gymnastics session should always be supervised by a competent professional. Never participate in gymnastics without proper supervision.
3. Dress Appropriately. Always dress in terms of the learning/performing situation. Use chalk, handgrips, tape, etc., where appropriate. When in doubt, consult your instructor.
4. Communicate Clearly. Establish a clear, accurate communicative link with your coach. Make certain that both of you know exactly what, when, where, how and why the skill is to be performed and/or spotted.
5. Be Prepared to Participate. Be sure that you are physically, as well as psychologically, ready to perform. Total fitness is a fundamental prerequisite to safe practices in gymnastics.
6. Master Basic Skills First. Follow a definite progressive pattern in skill learning. Master first those basic skills that have the broadest application to the more complex skills.
7. Know the Skill. Be sure to have an accurate visual concept of the full potential of the skill. Know how to initiate, execute, and complete the entire movement. Develop an awareness for the more critical aspects of each skill.
8. Always Follow Through. Once you commit to and/or go for a skill, always follow through to its full completion. Be keenly aware that a prime consideration is protection of your head and spinal column.
9. Know Your Limitations. Develop a healthy awareness and respect for your individual limitations in learning and performing gymnastics.