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Emily_

Gymnast
Mar 13, 2022
14
18
Hey everyone, I'm a 17 year old gymnast and for the last two years I rarely had a meet, because of strict lock-down measures. Since the start of 2022 all measures had been dropped so gymnastics meets were finally back on the table. Since then I've had two meets and I failed badly at both.. I actually finished last AA in both meets and the second meet I even finished last in every separate event too :/

I'm not that strong mentally so I was absolutely crushed by these two failures. It hit me hard. I wasn't just crying on the way back home, I was sad all weekend! Pre-covid I always used to finish around top 10, but now I am the bottom of the bottom. I hope to get back on track fast, but it doesn't feel like I'm improving too well..

Does anyone (somewhat)relate to these feelings or am I alone here?
 

coach1234

Coach
Jan 14, 2014
344
Covid has hit everyone differently. Some gymnasts came back and picked things up fairly quickly some gymnasts are still struggling to regain skills they had in 2019 and some gymnasts unfortunately did not return at all.
You should be so proud of yourself for being one of the gymnasts who have made it back to the gym and managed to get through the whole lockdown.

In terms of meet results, I always tell my gymnasts not to focus on the results as we cannot control what anyone else does, only what we do. They have to pick a couple of targets that they would like to achieve during the meet and if they come last doesn't matter as that's not what we are focusing on.

Look at the positive's from your last couple of meets, firstly the fact that you are back out competing in itself is something to be proud of.
 

Emily_

Gymnast
Mar 13, 2022
14
18
Covid has hit everyone differently. Some gymnasts came back and picked things up fairly quickly some gymnasts are still struggling to regain skills they had in 2019 and some gymnasts unfortunately did not return at all.
You should be so proud of yourself for being one of the gymnasts who have made it back to the gym and managed to get through the whole lockdown.

In terms of meet results, I always tell my gymnasts not to focus on the results as we cannot control what anyone else does, only what we do. They have to pick a couple of targets that they would like to achieve during the meet and if they come last doesn't matter as that's not what we are focusing on.

Look at the positive's from your last couple of meets, firstly the fact that you are back out competing in itself is something to be proud of.
Thanks for the advice! However, it's hard to not get stuck in negative thinking when you lose so bad and feel like you're back to square one. It's easy to say 'better luck next time' or try to look at the small victories, but I can't really see the victories yet, I guess I just find it hard to cope with failure..
 

gympoppop

Proud Parent
Feb 27, 2022
39
You have done well before so you know that you have it in you to do well again. If you keep at it you will get back up there. One thing I’ve learned in my short time is that the small deductions can add up quickly to big points off. I would think after not competing for two years you the first thing would lose is the “polish” on your skills. This is totally normal. Scores can also rise very quickly by fixing these minor issues. If you have the incorrect body shape on a tap swing, lose .2 each time and do 3 in your routine, well that’s going to crush your bar score real quick. Sounds like you have the skills and the ability, so I suspect it’s just getting the polish back that covid took away.
 
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raenndrops

Coach
Oct 24, 2009
6,788
The 'Wood, Ohio
Thanks for the advice! However, it's hard to not get stuck in negative thinking when you lose so bad and feel like you're back to square one. It's easy to say 'better luck next time' or try to look at the small victories, but I can't really see the victories yet, I guess I just find it hard to cope with failure..
If you fail quote.jpg

You are not a failure. You competed in those meets!
To find the small victories, you have to pick things to focus on that are NOT score OR placement related.
For my LSS (Xcel Gold), her goals for the meet on Saturday include:
1 - hit her squat on on bars OR her cast requirement
2 - compete her flyaway
3 - land her cartwheel on beam
4 - stay ON the beam for turns and jumps
5 - Land her RO-BT on floor cleanly
6 - Straighten her back leg on her leap pass
7 - Get over the vault table
8 - Don't hurt her knee while vaulting
 

Emily_

Gymnast
Mar 13, 2022
14
18
You have done well before so you know that you have it in you to do well again. If you keep at it you will get back up there. One thing I’ve learned in my short time is that the small deductions can add up quickly to big points off. I would think after not competing for two years you the first thing would lose is the “polish” on your skills. This is totally normal. Scores can also rise very quickly by fixing these minor issues. If you have the incorrect body shape on a tap swing, lose .2 each time and do 3 in your routine, well that’s going to crush your bar score real quick. Sounds like you have the skills and the ability, so I suspect it’s just getting the polish back that covid took away.
Thanks so much for the trust, I indeed made the wrong swings and various other mistakes that are fixable..
 

Emily_

Gymnast
Mar 13, 2022
14
18
View attachment 8221
You are not a failure. You competed in those meets!
To find the small victories, you have to pick things to focus on that are NOT score OR placement related.
For my LSS (Xcel Gold), her goals for the meet on Saturday include:
1 - hit her squat on on bars OR her cast requirement
2 - compete her flyaway
3 - land her cartwheel on beam
4 - stay ON the beam for turns and jumps
5 - Land her RO-BT on floor cleanly
6 - Straighten her back leg on her leap pass
7 - Get over the vault table
8 - Don't hurt her knee while vaulting
loll baby steps! Thanks so much for the motivation!!
 
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LucyRobinson

Gymnast
Feb 27, 2022
133
I can't imagine how hard it would be to be an upper level, or even optional gymnast during the pandemic. I was lucky to come back and start training for Level 5 without much trouble. You are amazing for sticking with it!

You say you're not strong mentally. Gymnastics is partly mental. I would reccomend getting a gymnastics journal and working on improving your confidence. The more ready you are mentally, the easier it comes physically.
 

ProudGymnast

Gymnast
Fan
Feb 16, 2021
126
You definitely are not alone. But hang in there! And give yourself grace.

My best advice is take it step by step. This season, I started with a upper 32 score. Yeah, was not proud of that in the moment. But I've worked my way up too an upper 36, and I am proud of that as a first year level 9. My next goal is a 37.

And, I would point all disappointed gymnasts to my message up there. You're first meet doesn't define you, nor the next off meet. My season is not defined by that 32, although after that first meet it may have seemed like that, rather I define my season by that four points of improvement. Or by my newfound confidence in my routines. Where you should be looking is beginning to end. Are you improving? If not, then its time to evaluate.

But hold that feeling of worthlessness until the very last day you are in gymnastics and can truly say you have never made any improvement.

What you can do now is find the root of the problem (meet anxiety, inconsistency, lack of strength, lack of confidence, form issues, etc) and go to the gym to work your hardest to smooth out those bumps, and continue to move forward.
 

Emily_

Gymnast
Mar 13, 2022
14
18
I can't imagine how hard it would be to be an upper level, or even optional gymnast during the pandemic. I was lucky to come back and start training for Level 5 without much trouble. You are amazing for sticking with it!

You say you're not strong mentally. Gymnastics is partly mental. I would recommend getting a gymnastics journal and working on improving your confidence. The more ready you are mentally, the easier it comes physically.
Thank you for the compliment. I'll try keeping a journal! If you feel open enough to share, could you tell me what type of stuff you'd put in there? Maybe a picture of a page? I wouldn't know what to write down tbh
 

Emily_

Gymnast
Mar 13, 2022
14
18
You definitely are not alone. But hang in there! And give yourself grace.

My best advice is take it step by step. This season, I started with a upper 32 score. Yeah, was not proud of that in the moment. But I've worked my way up too an upper 36, and I am proud of that as a first year level 9. My next goal is a 37.

And, I would point all disappointed gymnasts to my message up there. You're first meet doesn't define you, nor the next off meet. My season is not defined by that 32, although after that first meet it may have seemed like that, rather I define my season by that four points of improvement. Or by my newfound confidence in my routines. Where you should be looking is beginning to end. Are you improving? If not, then its time to evaluate.

But hold that feeling of worthlessness until the very last day you are in gymnastics and can truly say you have never made any improvement.

What you can do now is find the root of the problem (meet anxiety, inconsistency, lack of strength, lack of confidence, form issues, etc) and go to the gym to work your hardest to smooth out those bumps, and continue to move forward.
I tend to keep the feeling of worthlessness for a long time and I am often defined by my meet results. If I finished high, I had pride; if I finished low, I had shame. This never was a problem before because I rarely finished at the bottom, let alone last place, or even last place twice in a row..

I see now, that that is a problem. However, I do not know how to fix it yet.
I think the root of the problems are almost all of the ones you listed. I have anxiety before meets, am inconsistent, and most of all have a lack of confidence. especially at times when I struggle to perform correctly. Over the time the gym closed down my form has gotten worse, but my strength is still on point!

At this point there are so many things that are downright terrible and need to be fixed before I can perform well again. The next step you listed was to 'go to the gym' and 'continue to move forward', but if I'm honest, I don't have a clue where to start. My coach doesn't really help me that much, outside of getting more tears out of my eyes when I do fail, and when I think of all the parts that need improvement I get overwhelmed.

I know that I'm asking a lot, but could you advise me a little more detailed how you think I should tackle this? I am still motivated for the sport, but right now I am a little too overwhelmed to make sense of all of this.
 

PreciousJ

Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Fan
Feb 16, 2021
448
USA
Words from a mom:

Remember that gymnastics is what you DO, but it is not who you ARE. Don't let this activity define you, you are so much more. One day, gymnastics will be gone, but you will still be....you. And YOU are not a failure.
 

Emily_

Gymnast
Mar 13, 2022
14
18
I've got a chance next Saturday (the 26th) to improve upon my results that I had in the meets before..

I've been training really hard these last couple days and I'm really excited to show it on my meet

Thanks to you guys I've learned to go for small victories, rather than expecting myself to be back in the running like before. My current goal is to not finish last at one of the events :)
Small victories!
 

raenndrops

Coach
Oct 24, 2009
6,788
The 'Wood, Ohio
I've got a chance next Saturday (the 26th) to improve upon my results that I had in the meets before..

I've been training really hard these last couple days and I'm really excited to show it on my meet

Thanks to you guys I've learned to go for small victories, rather than expecting myself to be back in the running like before. My current goal is to not finish last at one of the events :)
Small victories!
What are your goals past "to not finish last on one of the events"?
That is a good goal. but you want to make sure you have goals the YOU control. There is no defense in gymnastics. Because of that, you should set a small goal for each event that has nothing to do with scores or placement.

At our last meet, the scores seemed to be low on multiple events.
Highest vault scores per level:
DP3 = 9.250
DP7 = 9.200
DP6 = 9.150
DP2, DP5, & XP = 9.000
XS, XD, DP8, & DP9 = 8.900
XG = 8.850
DP4 = 8.800
If a gymnast has set a goal of scoring a 9.0 on vault in XG, she would have been disappointed ... even though she was 1st on vault!
 
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