WAG Age trend in JO? Or, younger, better, faster...

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LJL07

Proud Parent
Jan 27, 2014
1,856
That's actually a pretty common skill in cheerleading. AND I agree completely!!! But! I'll have to admit....I have had a YouTube acct for DD since she was 3.....we don't really put much up anymore and never the provocative style stuff. Oh and we did do pageants too...lol...we didn't know any better!!

Not like what is on Instagram. #5yearoldgymnast. Even if one of my kids was the second coming of the greatest gymnast in the world (and they are not), I wouldn't set up an account like that.
 

profmom

Proud Parent
Nov 18, 2011
9,461
Region 7
I just hope that folks who are making these judgments are being very careful in how they express them. I still feel really angry at the kindergarten wraparound teachers who scolded and shamed my daughter for swinging around upside down on the monkey bars because she was in a dress -- even though she had shorts on underneath the dress. They didn't use the word "****" but they may as well have, and at that point, having been raised in my household, it had never occurred to her until that very moment that her body could possibly be an object of shame.
 

LJL07

Proud Parent
Jan 27, 2014
1,856
I just hope that folks who are making these judgments are being very careful in how they express them. I still feel really angry at the kindergarten wraparound teachers who scolded and shamed my daughter for swinging around upside down on the monkey bars because she was in a dress -- even though she had shorts on underneath the dress. They didn't use the word "****" but they may as well have, and at that point, having been raised in my household, it had never occurred to her until that very moment that her body could possibly be an object of shame.
No, no. Maybe just speaking for myself. At least for me, it's the blatant posing, make up, pageantry, pushing tiny kids to do very big skills like back tucks at 4 and 5...that sort of thing. And they actually can do the skills, but it sounds like they shouldn't be pushed to do them at that age given what I've been reading. Goodness knows both of mine are upside down in their jumpers every day at recess on monkey bars and playground equipment.
 
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gymmomx2

Proud Parent
Oct 16, 2013
765
No, no. Maybe just speaking for myself. At least for me, it's the blatant posing, make up, pageantry, pushing tiny kids to do very big skills like back tucks at 4 and 5...that sort of thing. And they actually can do the skills, but it sounds like they shouldn't be pushed to do them at that age given what I've been reading. Goodness knows both of mine are upside down in their jumpers every day at recess on monkey bars and playground equipment.

Re: big skills - the coach is as much to blame (or more) as the parent. He/she is the professional in this case and can/should say no to teaching these skills to a 4-5 year old. The videos posted on that Instagram account mostly seem to be at a gym club, hence I assume they were taken with a coach present. Also the gym is strangely empty so maybe these were taken during a private.

I do think it is misguided to post those kinds of pictures/videos on a wide open social media site, not because there is anything wrong with the pcitures/videos but because there are some sick people out there looking for this kind of material.
 
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KayleeGymnast51402

Some of them, they actually only have their kids take privates so they can learn all these big skills, honestly I wouldn't be surprised if the reason for them getting these skills is so their parents can make them an Internet star..... :(

I feel bad for them.
 

gwenmom

Proud Parent
Jan 24, 2013
538
DD has a YouTube account since she was 6 but it private and mostly so her great grandma who lives pretty far away and isn't very mobile anymore can see her routines.
 
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rosettasmom

Proud Parent
Apr 18, 2012
129
I just think in this day and age of Internet we need to be exceptionally careful of what is posted. It's unfortunate, but we do need to teach our dds that certain poses that expose private areas are maybe not the best. I see too many teens on fb posting pics that are wildly inappropriate. When parents start this trend at 4, what are we to expect at 14? It's a slippery slope to be sure. My dd wears short shorts, dresses and the like but I have taught her that knees and ankles together is best practice. Especially in public and certainly in front of cameras.
 

LJL07

Proud Parent
Jan 27, 2014
1,856
Re: big skills - the coach is as much to blame (or more) as the parent. He/she is the professional in this case and can/should say no to teaching these skills to a 4-5 year old. The videos posted on that Instagram account mostly seem to be at a gym club, hence I assume they were taken with a coach present. Also the gym is strangely empty so maybe these were taken during a private.

Can't remember which of the kids, but the mothers are the gym owners/coaches for one or two of them. So you can bet the mothers are the ones teaching the skills. The kids are probably in the gym every day. It's really a shame bc they are very talented but will likely burn out by age 8.
 

gymmomx2

Proud Parent
Oct 16, 2013
765
Can't remember which of the kids, but the mothers are the gym owners/coaches for one or two of them. So you can bet the mothers are the ones teaching the skills. The kids are probably in the gym every day. It's really a shame bc they are very talented but will likely burn out by age 8.

YIKES. And I think they absolutely know that the stuff is viewed by a lot of people. That one instagram account has 200K followers :O
You can bet not all of them are gymnastics fans...
 
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Sari

Coach
Gymnast
Judge
May 31, 2014
443
29
I might be the odd one out here, but I'm pretty sure I follow a couple of those accounts (and definitely the one AandAsmom was talking about) and these girls don't look like they're being forced to throw skills.

Sure, you could argue that the parents are exposing them, but it's not like they're posting nude pictures and it's the same thing as having a public Youtube account. Of course there are creeps. But those could just as well be lurking in the gym or out on the street. I just feel like in this day and age, we ought to be a bit more open towards trends like Instagram accounts without jumping to conclusions about the parents' intentions. Plus I know for a fact that these people monitor their followers as much as possible and regularly sort out lurkers.
 
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KayleeGymnast51402

I might be the odd one out here, but I'm pretty sure I follow a couple of those accounts (and definitely the one AandAsmom was talking about) and these girls don't look like they're being forced to throw skills.

Sure, you could argue that the parents are exposing them, but it's not like they're posting nude pictures and it's the same thing as having a public Youtube account. Of course there are creeps. But those could just as well be lurking in the gym or out on the street. I just feel like in this day and age, we ought to be a bit more open towards trends like Instagram accounts without jumping to conclusions about the parents' intentions. Plus I know for a fact that these people monitor their followers as much as possible and regularly sort out lurkers.
Yes, but, they don't have to be a lurker, to be a creep. They don't have to lurk, yet they can still be watching for all the wrong reasons.
 

LJL07

Proud Parent
Jan 27, 2014
1,856
I might be the odd one out here, but I'm pretty sure I follow a couple of those accounts (and definitely the one AandAsmom was talking about) and these girls don't look like they're being forced to throw skills.

No one appears to be forcing the kids to do back handsprings, tucks, etc., and if the kids weren't talented, all of the training in the world wouldn't help them "get" those skills at age 4 and 5 years old. But I was under the impression that all of those tricks are not safe for 4 and 5 year olds??

I don't see where the kids are necessarily posed provocatively, but the instagram accounts are very attention seeking. The accounts are not private--all of them are very public accounts, so you don't have to "follow" them to easily find the pictures. I'm not following them, and they popped up right away when I clicked on a hashtag under a friend's photo. I personally have a hard time understanding why a parent would want to publicly promote a child like that unless it's for their own narcissism or maybe they want them to get discovered and cast on a Disney channel show. They are all very cute kids!
 

aksaunders

Proud Parent
Dec 19, 2012
161
Columbus
In fact, there is a young lady at my DD's gym being recruited by most of the major programs in the country. She has the talent to become an elite gymnast but chose a couple of years ago to be a regular kid who goes to school with her friends instead of being home-schooled. While this might not have been a popular choice for some, it may actually benefit her in the long run: her mother told me that Alabama's coaching staff told her that they preferred athletes with elite level skills who hadn't run their bodies into the ground pursuing the elite path.
Just to follow up on this comment I made a few days ago...this young lady was offered a full ride to Alabama today by Coach Duckworth. She is in 8th grade.
 

raenndrops

Coach
Oct 24, 2009
6,804
The 'Wood, Ohio
From my very limited experience, A LOT can change between level 7 and level 9.
I also know many 8&9 year old L 7 and L8s that burn out quickly or have injuries.

It's a parents job to pace their child, smell the roses, and keep in balance their kids childhood, even if they are L10 at 10.
The only SURE thing, is they can't do gymnastics forever.
I know a 10 year old RETIRED L7 gymnast... She did NOT go to my gym... She retired just before her 10th birthday due to nagging injuries as she was training for L8 (had been pretty consistently in the 37s in L7 and took 7th at STATE - with an uncharacteristic fall on Bars... V-2nd, UB- 13th, BB-5th, and FX- 5th).

I knew I hadn't seen her mentioned lately and happened to run into her at Open Gym at her old Club and she told me that she is now a swimmer (hoping to make Y Nationals for swimming... not from my YMCA either, lol).
 

lovemygymnast

Proud Parent
Mar 25, 2014
854
Just to follow up on this comment I made a few days ago...this young lady was offered a full ride to Alabama today by Coach Duckworth. She is in 8th grade.
One of the best locally selected college gymnasts we know was the same way. She said that she wanted a life outside of gym and wanted to pursue other sports as well. She was very good at soccer too. She refused to be homeschooled and didn't want to go elite. She had no major injuries even through her college career and truly was one our university's best gymnasts ever. I don't think she was offered a full ride in 8th grade but still, kudos to her for making a decision to have a normal life and gym.
 

Granny Smith

Proud Parent
Jun 21, 2007
1,444
You do not need to be one of those gymnast that rise through the levels quickly to have college aspirations. I think that there are many girls who would like to do gymnastics in college, regardless of their current level and with D1, D2 and D3, many girls can still compete in college, if they choose. You do need to have solid basics and excellent form to then move on to be a successful optional gymnast and then college gymnast. For the very, very few who are committing to colleges as 8th/9th grades there are probably 4 to 5 times more committing as sophomores, juniors and seniors.

As for youtube and other social media outlets, I must admit that I laugh when I see videos that people post and they put the kids age in the title, right there is the warning sign.... DO NOT WATCH!
 

Flipflopz

Proud Parent
Jun 24, 2013
166
A lot of people I have observed leave the sport at level 9. So it may seem like a huge force of people will arrive at level 10, but my experience says that is not the case. And some that are doing level 10 should be doing 9 or 8. Attending meets for lev 9 and 10 you really get the feel of the short number of girls remaining.
 

ldw4mlo

Proud Parent
Feb 13, 2015
6,532
62
Our teams at the meet this weekend. We had 31 kids. 4 were levels 7&8, Another 6 were level 5, pretty sure our gym doesn't do L6. the other 21 were Level 2 & 3, now new 3&4, moving up respectively.

And our higher level girls are all older then my 9 yr old. I see this as typical based on our meets.

I just think a lot of attrition happens as they get older, finances, injuries, burnout, wanting to do other things and unable to because of the commitment of time required. And the realization that they (parents and kids) aren't Olympic or college ride bound. All of it comes into play.

Still not sure about fast tracking, since there are age limits for things like the Olympics. We uptrain at our gym. The parents seem more concerned about the level then most of the kids.

I recently got off that crazy train. Busy worrying why she isn't doing high bar at meets, She is totally capable. Had to step back she has 4 meets left at silver level, then it's up to the high bar for the rest of her gymnastic life as long as that maybe. Just not going to stress how young she is to do something or if she is the first to move or get something. She gets it when she gets it.
 
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duyetanh

Proud Parent
Feb 21, 2015
4,113
My kid is an odd one. She was obsessed with moving to level 4...I was not. I would have been more than happy with her remaining a level 3...but it was not her plan. All I care about is that she is happy, so I had to let it go. I have no idea how she will do next season, but she has big goals, and I will support her from the sidelines silently, because it is not about me, it is about her. :D
 
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