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Ages & levels

Discussion in 'Men's Artistic Gymnastics (MAG)' started by rosiekat, Nov 10, 2017.

  1. acam1103

    acam1103 Member Proud Parent Former Gymnast

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    The age cutoff change also really hit kids doing future stars. My youngest started training it this year, after his first year on team, as an "8 year old" who was only 3 months past being 6 (because it goes by next comp year's ages). He was level 4 as a six year old (comp age 7) but came to team a bit late in the season straight from level 1 rec and despite his potential probably won't catch up for FS. 6 was just too old to get started
     

  2. 2G1B

    2G1B Active Member Proud Parent

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    And 6 years old should never be considered too old to get started in a sport!!!
     
  3. skschlag

    skschlag Well-Known Member CBBC Board Member Proud Parent

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    That is strange. we have kiddos that just joined at 6-8 that are all training for future stars. I am not sure why your ds would have been deemed to old at 6. FS doesn't even start until 8....
     
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  4. 2G1B

    2G1B Active Member Proud Parent

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    I take it that he started gymnastics at 6 and was quickly moved to preteam/team; but he started competing last year, as a true 6 year old; but USAG considered him 7. So then this season he is really 7; but competes as an 8 year old I guess.
     

  5. acam1103

    acam1103 Member Proud Parent Former Gymnast

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    Yes, what 2G1B said :) Last season he was chronologically 6 years old for most of the season, competing as a 7-year old. Prior to that he was Level 1 because he had just started gym, and then got moved to team. Because this past Future Stars season (May-September) goes by the upcoming year's ages, he was an 8-year old for future stars even though when practices started he had just turned 7.

    But because they all "lost" a year they have to be ready for future stars a year earlier which means the boys who were successful were the ones who did pre-team at 4-5 and started level 4 competitive aged 6. It's basically just a year less for boys to get into the sport and ready. My son still got to do the training and a clinic, and it was a GREAT experience for him, but didn't go to testing because he just had too little time on team to have mastered all of those skills, even though he is learning them faster than many. It just crunches everything by making a large majority of the boys a year "older" than they would have been in the past but keeping the entry age for the program the same. In the past he would have had two years on team before being old enough for the first year of future stars, but now he only had one because he didn't start until age 6/comp 7.

    It's really not a big deal in the grand scheme of things - because he'll get where he is going to get whether or not he has success in the FS program, I have no doubt of that. It's just that it crunched EVERYTHING by changing the cut-off. And in a program already geared toward the young, fast learners, the crunch is felt by those boys who didn't start gym in preschool.

    But I still think it's harder on my oldest/slower mover who may have no options at some point, unless things change at his current gym :(

    What would birth date determination be? Would that mean, all kids born in a given calendar year are in the same age group?
     
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  6. skschlag

    skschlag Well-Known Member CBBC Board Member Proud Parent

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    Yes. so anyone born in 2008 would compete against kids born in 2008. I believe most of the other countries do it this way..
     
  7. acam1103

    acam1103 Member Proud Parent Former Gymnast

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    I like that. There will always be kids at the youngest and oldest end of each group but it least it takes the focus away from the age. Although, it will only help if the maximum "birth year" issue is also addressed!
     
  8. skschlag

    skschlag Well-Known Member CBBC Board Member Proud Parent

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    they wil have to add 19 yo to do this, so things would be adjusted. A large # of kids turn 19 the year they graduate, so that woudl have to be addressed.

    Not sure how I feel. There are advantages and disadvantages to every age cut off.
     
  9. rosiekat

    rosiekat Member Proud Parent

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    Weren't there rumors that this is the plan for next quad?
     
  10. profmom

    profmom Well-Known Member CB Booster Club Proud Parent

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    It remains to be seen, but the addition of two divisions for JD may improve things substantially. Division 1 does encourage the development of routines that can move toward L9 and L10. A lot will depend on how the coaches themselves use and present it. If JD1 ultimately replaces the older categories of L8-L10 and many gyms use JD1 to prepare athletes for L9 and L10, I don't think it's necessarily going to be a bad thing.
     
  11. skschlag

    skschlag Well-Known Member CBBC Board Member Proud Parent

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    Yes. Makes me a bit nervous. if they do this, my ds will actually be 19 that last season....(instead of 18). But I am sure they will account for that.
     
  12. Madden3

    Madden3 Member Proud Parent

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    Sooooo- then would they compete the age they are on January 1st of the current season year, or the age they will be on January 1st of the following year???? I am so confused.
     
  13. skschlag

    skschlag Well-Known Member CBBC Board Member Proud Parent

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    Basically they would compete against all kids born that year. So, all kids born in 2008, 2009, etc. But I am not 100% sure. It is just a rumor I heard on here at one point. Haven't heard a lot about it lately....
     
  14. Madden3

    Madden3 Member Proud Parent

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    Ok, I just realized you are not talking about the age date being Jan 1 or Dec 31 (that is what I thought people were talking about was going to be the next change...)

    So, what you are talking about is a (possible or rumored) system where it would all be about age- and not skill level??? Yikes.
     
  15. profmom

    profmom Well-Known Member CB Booster Club Proud Parent

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    I don't think levels are going away. And if they want to continue having at least L9 and L10 nationals, they will keep having the in age thing, I presume.

    From my seat in the bleachers, it seems like a lot of the big changes are designed to help out the tiny handful of kids who are headed toward international competition on the junior level. I'm not sure that makes sense, especially when the men's side is in such an overall precarious position. I don't know exactly what USAG could do to advocate more effectively for men's gym in college, but I do believe that having an overall stronger college tier would benefit the sport greatly and, with patience and time, would also strengthen the high performance side.

    We know that male gymnasts do not reach their full potential until they are in their early 20s. A system that effectively winnows out almost all of the potential before then is not going to be as effective as a system that provides opportunities for the later bloomers to get there. I personally know of two young men who really came into their own just last year and are looking at better years this coming year, but as they are now seniors in high school, they have no meaningful prospects unless they do club gym in college. Neither was "good enough" to be JE but both were outscoring JE guys on their strongest events by states and regionals last year. If you were to track their trajectories, you'd see theirs taking a sharp upward turn the last couple of years just as most of their competitors were flattening out a bit. If things go as I expect, we'll never know what these guys could have accomplished if they stayed in a rigorous training program.
     
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  16. skschlag

    skschlag Well-Known Member CBBC Board Member Proud Parent

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    No..the date would be cahnged to birth years, but I am not sure how it would work. So, all L10 born in 2003.....etc.
     
  17. skschlag

    skschlag Well-Known Member CBBC Board Member Proud Parent

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    I wish USAG could do something about the college situation, but I don't think they have any pull there. and, with the success of several club teams lately, that could be the wave of the future. But I agree that with the focus on the young ones, pre-puberty, many kiddos are being over looked in the process. I think it puts undue pressure on the younger ones, and I wonder what that will look like for them as they grow up. '
     
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  18. samsmama

    samsmama Active Member Proud Parent

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    I am really surprised to hear that some gyms consider an 11-yr-old L6 "too old". My son competed L6 as a 10-yr-old and was the youngest L6 on his team and one of the youngest in the L4-6 group overall at a gym that places very well in our state and region. At competitions, he was almost always in the youngest age division.
     
  19. Madden3

    Madden3 Member Proud Parent

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    Remember he can compete 5, 6 and 7 as long as he needs to. This is an option if the gym does not have JD- and even if they do, but your kid does not want to do JD! My oldest is 14 and competing 8 for the second year. No one is pressuring him to "go" JD instead even though we actually do have JD. My level 7 son has a teammate who will compete as a 14 year old this year in L 7.

    What is really weird is they made optionals so rigid age wise at the same time they encourage gyms to have compulsory boys do two years per level with the divisions.
     
  20. jenjean70

    jenjean70 Member Proud Parent

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    Future Stars as an 8 year old is not a deal breaker in the grand scheme of things because they can catch up and by the time they are 10-12 could still make nationals. My son "made" Future Stars as an 8 year old but our gym didn't do it again until this year when he was 12. He can do all of the skills but he is not perfection in the "tight and clean" department so he did not make nationals. It was a good experience for him because those routines are the same routines he will compete for technical sequences in JE. We had a number of boys compete Future Stars - some didn't start gymnastics until they were 8 or 9. Boys are lucky because 6 or 7 or even 8 is not "old" for them to start this sport- at that age they have many, many years to make it to level 10 and go to college or more. :) That being said, the age change did affect many gymnastics, esp. those with spring birthdays. My son caught a break with the age change because he is a summer birthday.
     
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