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Flyaway

Proud Parent
Jun 1, 2014
1,380
I think you may need to research and understand just how lofty of a goal college Gymnastics is, let alone making it to elite. There’s nothing wrong with letting kids dream big, but please understand that the chances of making it on a college team are very slim. It’s nothing to bank on that’s for sure. There was a great article floating around chalkboard that break down the numbers about how many actually make it.

Yes! This is why all the insta-gymmies on YT and Instagram annoy me so much. Parents see that and think it's not only NORMAL for a 6 year old to be on an "elite" path, but also think that's how you have to do it. Then they do things like homeschool BECAUSE of gym or drive ridiculous hours and distances when their kiddo is still learning mill circles. There may be a time and a place for that sort of commitment, but seriously, don't take it so seriously yet! It should be fun! the little "Ellen" gymnast is not Olympics bound yet and no other 6 year old is yet either!

Sorry, this is not really directed at you OP. Please don't take it personally. Just know that you can relax a little about all of it right now.
 

ldw4mlo

Proud Parent
Feb 13, 2015
6,432
62
(Guess what, everyone who wants to progress has gym equipment at home.)
.


Ummmm no, not really.

My kid has no gym equipment at home. Never did. She also has no Elite/Olympic dreams and she is old enough to know the commitment that it takes. But I do know that most of the kids at our gym that did have equipment at home have moved onto other things and are no longer doing gymnastics. Most quit between L4-6. There are 2 left with equipment at home, at L7, I know for a fact this will be their last year with gym. And of course the skills they need to work on now, they can no longer work on at home. So the home equipment is no longer used. And my kid is still at gym, further along at L8 with no home equipment, ever.

My daughter’s coach says practice does not make perfect. Practice makes permanent. It’s harder to undo the muscle memory of a badly done skill. Then to just do it less but correctly in the gym. So no, they say no gymnastics at home. Beyond conditioning and choreography.

I’m pretty sure any elite/high level coach would be the same. Besides by the time they get to that level. They are practicing such high hours. Home is there downtime.

She is 6. It’s fine to love gym. And she should be playing, running, drawing, dancing....... lots of other things besides gym. These things are much better for her then all those hours in a car
 

2gymkids

Proud Parent
Mar 26, 2013
243
Also, FWIW, our coaches always prohibited anything more than handstands, stretching etc at home. We had a beam and a mat and generally my girls used them to make up "routines" on snowy, cold days. It kept them entertained for hours but I'm fairly certain it didn't progress their gymnastics skills. Gymnastics should not be learned, or even really practiced at home, it's a great way to learn the wrong thing!
 

Taxidriver

Proud Parent
Sep 25, 2016
217
(Guess what, everyone who wants to progress has gym equipment at home.)
You don’t need home equipment to progress. At my dd gym there’s an Olympian who I know from conversations with their mum has never had any home equipment also there’s another girl who IF she carries on and continues to progress as she is has a very good chance of being an Olympian who has nothing more than a matt at home which she uses for conditioning.
My dd gym bans home practice other than conditioning and home equipment and they have had many high level gymnasts.
 
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honoragymnast

Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2018
26
You don’t need home equipment to progress. At my dd gym there’s an Olympian who I know from conversations with their mum has never had any home equipment also there’s another girl who IF she carries on and continues to progress as she is has a very good chance of being an Olympian who has nothing more than a matt at home which she uses for conditioning.
My dd gym bans home practice other than conditioning and home equipment and they have had many high level gymnasts.
That's encouraging to hear. Thank you for correcting my misconception.
 

honoragymnast

Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2018
26
At the age of 6, starting any sport shouldn’t be solely to be elite, go to the Olympics, compete in college, etc. it should be because the kid truley enjoys doing that sport. My dd started at a small local gym. She loved it. She showed a lot of potential. She would have gone every day if she was allowed to. We stayed at the small local gym because she was only 8, it was only 15 min away, I wasn’t sure where she wanted to take this — so we stayed and she continued to progress. When she was a freshman in high school, she was going level 9 and knew what she wanted. She made sacrifices and I felt I had to give her the best opportunity. So we moved gyms - more hours, 45 min away (with no traffic), etc.
Would I have done it earlier? Probably not. Would she be farther ahead than where she is now? Maybe. But there was also a chance of burnout with the higher hours and sacrifices.
At 6 let her enjoy it. If she truly is passionate about it there is plenty of time to change later when she’s a higher level optional.
Thank you for your honest answer. I have to agree with you.
 

honoragymnast

Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2018
26
This sounds like mom's dream not the child's. How does a 6 year old even know what being an elite gymnast means?
A 6 year old doesn't necessarily know the word "elite" but does know about the Olympics. I asked the question about a 2 hour drive to figure out if there are actually parents who do that or would do that for a kid who has gymnastics on her mind almost constantly and always wants more. My instinct tells me, no, a 2 hour drive is crazy but I wanted to find out if there were other parents in a similar situation with no good gym anywhere nearby and a kid who loves the sport. There are plenty of 6 year olds who do know what elite means, btw.
 
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honoragymnast

Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2018
26
Yeah. I don't do TOPs, but I do have a solid JO program with a wait list. We would both be wasting our time.



I don't know, I've never heard of anything like that and can't really speculate. None of that paragraph makes a lot of sense to me. But regardless, as the parent, their opinion doesn't really impact what you do your own time, obviously. Skipping practice might or might not be an issue depending on how often or timing before a meet or whatever.



Find a new gym or sport (that isn't two hours away). You've already made up your mind. Time to move on. If you believe they aren't really watching your child, obviously there should be no question about your next move, even if it means dance lessons or soccer.



That's cool.
Hmm....I have actually made up my mind not to switch gyms. I do know what I've observed at the gym though and I would switch because of it if there was a closer gym than an hour away because I don't think it's ok to intentionally ignore certain kids and to be quite so obvious as far as spending more time with favorites. But there's nothing I will do about it at this time.
 

honoragymnast

Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2018
26
I think you may need to research and understand just how lofty of a goal college Gymnastics is, let alone making it to elite. There’s nothing wrong with letting kids dream big, but please understand that the chances of making it on a college team are very slim. It’s nothing to bank on that’s for sure. There was a great article floating around chalkboard that break down the numbers about how many actually make it.
Oh no, I do know just what it takes to get to college gymnastics level. And I know my kid won't make it from where she is now. As many people have pointed out, there is more to life than gymnastics, so it's not a big deal in the grand scheme of things.
 

honoragymnast

Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2018
26
We had a girl at our gym that did like 1.5 hour commute. Started level 3 about 6 years old, moved to home school and increased hours quickly (both her an her parents were definitely seeking to try and fast track her as she had elite goals). She did very well but both her and her family burnt out quickly. If you add high hours to high travel times you get no time with family even if you are homeschooling. She quit this year (she was level 8 at 10 years old). For your long term goals the gym you are at may not be the best but I would also be careful about increasing hours and travel times too quickly as it does take its toll.
You're absolutely right.
 
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honoragymnast

Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2018
26
My L8 probably never would have made it out of L3 if she had to do the mill circle! Luckily they started her at L4 and we never had to deal with it.

And to answer OPs question, a two hour drive for a 6 year old is absolutely a no go for us. We switched gyms this year to double our drive from 15-20 to 30-40 minutes and it was a huge commitment for our family with two other kids also involved in sports.

We have no equipment at home besides a panel mat and my DD has done just fine progress wise. I will say her friends with trampolines have really crappy form though from chucking skills at home, I'm glad I never caved to her begging for one.
Yes, trampolines are dangerous....we won't get our kids one either.
 

honoragymnast

Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2018
26
This sounds like mom's dream not the child's. How does a 6 year old even know what being an elite gymnast means?
Oh please, have you ever been a gym parent or part of a gym family? Do you have any idea how competitive and ridiculous gym parents get? I'm certainly not the only parent who thinks they have a talented gymnast and has asked the question "what if?" Also, perhaps you've never met little girls with big dreams, but there are plenty of 6 year old girls hoping to make it elite. That said, my daughter does not know the word "elite." She does, however, know about the Olympics. And no, it is certainly not my dream for her to be an elite gymnast.
 

honoragymnast

Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2018
26
Yes! This is why all the insta-gymmies on YT and Instagram annoy me so much. Parents see that and think it's not only NORMAL for a 6 year old to be on an "elite" path, but also think that's how you have to do it. Then they do things like homeschool BECAUSE of gym or drive ridiculous hours and distances when their kiddo is still learning mill circles. There may be a time and a place for that sort of commitment, but seriously, don't take it so seriously yet! It should be fun! the little "Ellen" gymnast is not Olympics bound yet and no other 6 year old is yet either!

Sorry, this is not really directed at you OP. Please don't take it personally. Just know that you can relax a little about all of it right now.
I can't even imagine the snarky comments and outrage that must be directed at parents of kids like Emma Rester (the kid on Ellen). All I asked about was a 2 hour drive and people were really opposed to the idea. What must they think of those instagram/youtube gymnasts like Isabelle Roberts?
 

LJL07

Proud Parent
Jan 27, 2014
1,856
I can't even imagine the snarky comments and outrage that must be directed at parents of kids like Emma Rester (the kid on Ellen). All I asked about was a 2 hour drive and people were really opposed to the idea. What must they think of those instagram/youtube gymnasts like Isabelle Roberts?
Ok, I’ll bite. I personally think it’s very misguided. I cannot understand why a parent would feel the need for widespread, public exposure of her child. The child is not asking for that. I think this is not about gymnastics and is much more about an overzealous parent who wants his/her child to be famous. There are plenty of talented children just like the two children you mentioned who do not have public Instagram accounts with 100K followers. This is just my opinion.
It is so hard to understand at 6 years old the amount of work and hours that go into becoming an elite gymnast. I think that’s what the other poster meant.
And again, I have nothing but sympathy for people with no gyms around. It’s awful not to have options.
 

honoragymnast

Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2018
26
Well most kids quit when in starts to get harder
Ummmm no, not really.

My kid has no gym equipment at home. Never did. She also has no Elite/Olympic dreams and she is old enough to know the commitment that it takes. But I do know that most of the kids at our gym that did have equipment at home have moved onto other things and are no longer doing gymnastics. Most quit between L4-6. There are 2 left with equipment at home, at L7, I know for a fact this will be their last year with gym. And of course the skills they need to work on now, they can no longer work on at home. So the home equipment is no longer used. And my kid is still at gym, further along at L8 with no home equipment, ever.

My daughter’s coach says practice does not make perfect. Practice makes permanent. It’s harder to undo the muscle memory of a badly done skill. Then to just do it less but correctly in the gym. So no, they say no gymnastics at home. Beyond conditioning and choreography.

I’m pretty sure any elite/high level coach would be the same. Besides by the time they get to that level. They are practicing such high hours. Home is there downtime.

She is 6. It’s fine to love gym. And she should be playing, running, drawing, dancing....... lots of other things besides gym. These things are much better for her then all those hours in a car
Ok, I’ll bite. I personally think it’s very misguided. I cannot understand why a parent would feel the need for widespread, public exposure of her child. The child is not asking for that. I think this is not about gymnastics and is much more about an overzealous parent who wants his/her child to be famous. There are plenty of talented children just like the two children you mentioned who do not have public Instagram accounts with 100K followers. This is just my opinion.
It is so hard to understand at 6 years old the amount of work and hours that go into becoming an elite gymnast. I think that’s what the other poster meant.
And again, I have nothing but sympathy for people with no gyms around. It’s awful not to have options.

I also think it's probably about the parent wanting fame in most cases of those public instagram accounts....
 
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TumbleTimes4

Proud Parent
Sep 13, 2016
578
38
Oh no, I do know just what it takes to get to college gymnastics level. And I know my kid won't make it from where she is now. As many people have pointed out, there is more to life than gymnastics, so it's not a big deal in the grand scheme of things.

I’m not sure that you are as knowledgeable about Gymnastics as you think based on your quotes:

(18 months for a mill circle, for example!)

She was only allowed (by the gym) to be there 1.5 hours per week until recently when they decided to let her join their team and bumped her up to 6 hours per week.

Guess what, everyone who wants to progress has gym equipment at home.

I am not trying to be critical, but 18 months for a mill circle isn’t unrealistic, six hours for a 6 year old on team is pretty standard, and every member on here who has been involved with the sport for years has spoken against home equipment. You’re comments just don’t seem to come from a very knowledgeable base of gymnastics. If you really know what it takes to get to college gym, then you probably wouldn’t even be asking this question. A four hour total commute with longer hours and more practice days and the addition of a TOPs program which you said would want her to do is a surefire recipe for burnout before she even hits middle school, let alone college.

I was brand new to the sport two years ago when my daughter joined a team. It’s ok to admit that you feel In over your head. I still feel that way at times even with two years of my daughter competing. CB is a great resource and I have learned a tremendous amount from the other members here. Let them be a voice of reason for you. There are many parents in this forum with successful optionals, college, and even elite gymnasts. They do know what it takes and they are the ones telling you to slow down and breathe.

A lot of six year olds are passionate about gymnastics and beg for more time in the gym. But what I have learned is that it is better to limit their gym time and keep them wanting more than to up their hours and eventually hit burnout before they turn 10. At their young ages, they don’t know or understand what is best for their physical and mental well being, nor do they really understand the need for rest. That’s where we need to step in as parents and limit them because it’s whats best for them. You wouldn’t feed your kids candy for dinner five days a week simply because that’s what they wanted. We know as parents that it’s not healthy for them. So why do we let 7 year olds train 20-24 hours a week when we know that it’s not healthy for them, but it’s “what they wanted.” Kids don’t know or understand what’s best for them, and sometimes it’s our job as parents to protect them from themselves and to teach them healthy habits.

In my opinion, kids that young that are training that long because “they want to be in the gym that much,” probably have parents that want them there that much because it’s some kind of badge of honor to them or they are living through their kid.
 

honoragymnast

Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2018
26
I’m not sure that you are as knowledgeable about Gymnastics as you think based on your quotes:







I am not trying to be critical, but 18 months for a mill circle isn’t unrealistic, six hours for a 6 year old on team is pretty standard, and every member on here who has been involved with the sport for years has spoken against home equipment. You’re comments just don’t seem to come from a very knowledgeable base of gymnastics. If you really know what it takes to get to college gym, then you probably wouldn’t even be asking this question. A four hour total commute with longer hours and more practice days and the addition of a TOPs program which you said would want her to do is a surefire recipe for burnout before she even hits middle school, let alone college.

I was brand new to the sport two years ago when my daughter joined a team. It’s ok to admit that you feel In over your head. I still feel that way at times even with two years of my daughter competing. CB is a great resource and I have learned a tremendous amount from the other members here. Let them be a voice of reason for you. There are many parents in this forum with successful optionals, college, and even elite gymnasts. They do know what it takes and they are the ones telling you to slow down and breathe.

A lot of six year olds are passionate about gymnastics and beg for more time in the gym. But what I have learned is that it is better to limit their gym time and keep them wanting more than to up their hours and eventually hit burnout before they turn 10. At their young ages, they don’t know or understand what is best for their physical and mental well being, nor do they really understand the need for rest. That’s where we need to step in as parents and limit them because it’s whats best for them. You wouldn’t feed your kids candy for dinner five days a week simply because that’s what they wanted. We know as parents that it’s not healthy for them. So why do we let 7 year olds train 20-24 hours a week when we know that it’s not healthy for them, but it’s “what they wanted.” Kids don’t know or understand what’s best for them, and sometimes it’s our job as parents to protect them from themselves and to teach them healthy habits.
In my opinion, kids that young that are training that long because “they want to be in the gym that much,” probably have parents that want them there that much because it’s some kind of badge of honor to them or they are living through their kid.

Yes, most people were quite right in their responses while a few were quite snarky and rude (Gymdog, for example.) Uncalled for. I do know about college level gymnastics because my sister was a college gymnast. Maybe I don't know first hand since I wasn't the gymnast, but I did live with her until I went to college and she was at that point putting in 25 hours/week at the gym. I also continued to be quite close to her during her college years and know how hard she worked to stay on the team. Perhaps not all kids who are serious about gymnastics have gym equipment or practice at home, but there are A LOT of kids who practice at home every single day. I had hoped CB would be a great resource, but evidently I made quite a mistake asking about a 2 hour drive.
 

LJL07

Proud Parent
Jan 27, 2014
1,856
I had hoped CB would be a great resource, but evidently I made quite a mistake asking about a 2 hour drive.

You really didn’t. It’s hard for people with no gyms within driving distance to understand. And I know when your kid loves something, you want to do what you can to make it happen for them. We don’t have good gyms over here. It was and is very frustrating bc I wanted a good program for my girls. But one thing I have learned from decisions and mistakes we have made over time in this sport, is that at 6 years old it doesn’t have to be the best program in the world or even a TOPs program. Get her as far as you can where you are. It is true that for level 9 or even possibly 8, you would need to make a commute. You just don’t have to do it yet. :)
 
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