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ReluctantGymMom

Proud Parent
May 11, 2020
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Stupid topic title, I know, but hear me out.

My daughter has hypermobile ankles, knees, elbows with loose ligaments (tendons? All the ortho visits have run together into a blur at this point). We are CONSTANTLY treating something. I am arranging my work schedule based on ortho visits, seriously. Her ankles are the biggest problem point and she does daily PT for them.

As the tumbling gets bigger and harder, is it even possible to succeed???

She's working towards front lay front tuck for her front pass and every time I see her jump hard into that pass, I think I die a little inside expecting her to come tell me she jacked up her ankles again.

She was in an ankle brace for 3 weeks, out of it for one week, hyperextended her knee on a vault, stiff brace for 2 weeks and off totally for 10 days, I'm just not seeing how she gets to something like double backs without just destroying her ankles. Is there hope here? Am I just funding her orthopedists lifestyle personally at this point???
 

Coach Kate

Coach
Fan
Oct 13, 2021
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I had some hypermobility issues as well. I did exercises for them and did fine in upper level tumbling, but I know some athletes need to wear a brace for tumbling their entire careers. We also have one who is constantly injured, at PT, I actually have had phone calls with her PT as her coach and am on a first name basis with him so we could work together. She is honestly struggling even in Xcel platinum and is very likely never going to make it further than that. She has other weaknesses that contribute to that as well, but the constant injuries certainly don't help. So it can kind of go either way.
 

PreciousJ

Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Fan
Feb 16, 2021
448
USA
Oh no, I hope it's not a serious injury. :(

My former experience as a nurse is kicking in - could there maybe be a nutritional component to her being injury-prone? In addition to the hypermobility? I'm just wondering if some deficiency (like calcium - it's important for muscles AND bones) could be a contributing factor.
 

oncemore

New Member
Aug 14, 2022
1
20
Personal experience talking- it is possible, but she is always going to be at a higher risk for injuries than her teammates. Nutrition can help, like getting more iron and calcium, as well as extra strength outside of classes. But there's no cure to hypermobility, and it will always be an issue.
Maybe talk about going back to basics, and building more strength? It may not be the nicest thing, but constant injuries like that sound like her body might just not be ready for tough tumbling. I hope she's feeling okay!
 
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Tammie

Member
Jul 22, 2022
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Oy! I am so so sorry!!

My kiddo is also hypermobile, however she had a really good coach in the beginning who conditioned those muscles extra from day one(she still does more conditioning than the rest of her teammates, her conditioning is on par with the L9/10/elite girls, plus a few extra conditioning things just for her, she's only L4/6-but it sounds like theyre doing similar things in training(shes working double backs on pit mats, has a flawless yurchenko full, etc).

I agree with oncemore, you need to go back to the beginning & do extra conditioning to assist with the hypermobility. Maybe talk to the conditioning coach? Your daughter's sports PT? Have them work together?

And even in doing the extra conditioning, you will still get an occasional hyperextension. They just seem a bit less severe....like my kiddo hyperextended a knee last season in warmups, iced it, and competed all 4 events, then iced it on the way home, was back at practice, full out, 2days later. Another time she turned an ankle, was on tumbletrack for a week & icing every break & at night, but didn't miss a day.

So another vote for back to basics and focus on conditioning.
 
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Kara

New Member
Jul 16, 2013
28
Please Op, if your daughter is experiencing multiple hyperextensions, do not just ice and go back to practice. See a doctor, which it looks like you are, even a minor hyperextension injury can cause permanent damage and continuing to work on it will just make it worse. I'd also suggest having your daughter tested for a connective tissue disorder if you haven't already. Physical therapy can help greatly with hypermobility, but it's important to make sure there isn't some deeper issue causing her problems.
 

ReluctantGymMom

Proud Parent
May 11, 2020
326
32
Oh no, I hope it's not a serious injury. :(

My former experience as a nurse is kicking in - could there maybe be a nutritional component to her being injury-prone? In addition to the hypermobility? I'm just wondering if some deficiency (like calcium - it's important for muscles AND bones) could be a contributing factor.
Thankfully looks like a wrist sprain not a fracture, we also had PT yesterday - turns out her hip muscles (the small supporting ones) are weak making her knees and in turn her ankles unstable, so she’s going to work on that.

Her calcium levels are good - she eats a solid amount of dairy, green veg, fruits, etc, she’s not a picky eater and we’re Mediterranean so big on cooking from scratch. She takes supplemental vitamin D and her levels are usually close to 60 so she’s not on the low end. I’m really just baffled
 
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ReluctantGymMom

Proud Parent
May 11, 2020
326
32
Personal experience talking- it is possible, but she is always going to be at a higher risk for injuries than her teammates. Nutrition can help, like getting more iron and calcium, as well as extra strength outside of classes. But there's no cure to hypermobility, and it will always be an issue.
Maybe talk about going back to basics, and building more strength? It may not be the nicest thing, but constant injuries like that sound like her body might just not be ready for tough tumbling. I hope she's feeling okay!
I don’t personally feel like her body is ready for tough tumbling but she’s an excellent tumbler, incredibly powerful, so her passes end up being upgraded. Her PT yesterday said the small hip muscles are weak causing knee and ankle instability, so I’m hoping by strengthening those and continuing to work on her ankles she’ll make it through the season ok :(

Do you have any suggestions for extra strength outside of gym? Nutrition wise she should be all set although I’ll check her iron levels, so I’m a bit of a loss on what to do
 

ReluctantGymMom

Proud Parent
May 11, 2020
326
32
Please Op, if your daughter is experiencing multiple hyperextensions, do not just ice and go back to practice. See a doctor, which it looks like you are, even a minor hyperextension injury can cause permanent damage and continuing to work on it will just make it worse. I'd also suggest having your daughter tested for a connective tissue disorder if you haven't already. Physical therapy can help greatly with hypermobility, but it's important to make sure there isn't some deeper issue causing her problems.
A bigger issue for her is just rolling her ankles while walking - we go to the dr quickly to check on any injuries, she has mild hemophilia so the goal is to always fix any problem before there is any chance of needing surgery (because that would be a big issue). I’m far more cautious than most people!

I’ll ask about testing her for a connective tissue disorder, but the ortho didn’t seem overly concerned. He was clear that she’d be fighting an uphill battle to keep strengthening the loose ligaments though
 
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ReluctantGymMom

Proud Parent
May 11, 2020
326
32
Oy! I am so so sorry!!

My kiddo is also hypermobile, however she had a really good coach in the beginning who conditioned those muscles extra from day one(she still does more conditioning than the rest of her teammates, her conditioning is on par with the L9/10/elite girls, plus a few extra conditioning things just for her, she's only L4/6-but it sounds like theyre doing similar things in training(shes working double backs on pit mats, has a flawless yurchenko full, etc).

I agree with oncemore, you need to go back to the beginning & do extra conditioning to assist with the hypermobility. Maybe talk to the conditioning coach? Your daughter's sports PT? Have them work together?

And even in doing the extra conditioning, you will still get an occasional hyperextension. They just seem a bit less severe....like my kiddo hyperextended a knee last season in warmups, iced it, and competed all 4 events, then iced it on the way home, was back at practice, full out, 2days later. Another time she turned an ankle, was on tumbletrack for a week & icing every break & at night, but didn't miss a day.

So another vote for back to basics and focus on conditioning.
Yep I’m handing her coach her PT papers and She’ll stay in the gym extra while she finishes ankles, knees and wrists excercises.

Side note: why is your daughter being kept in level 4 or 6 with level 9 skills???
 

JPC13

Proud Parent
Mar 25, 2022
343
Thankfully looks like a wrist sprain not a fracture, we also had PT yesterday - turns out her hip muscles (the small supporting ones) are weak making her knees and in turn her ankles unstable, so she’s going to work on that.
Can she easily do a bunch of connected press handstands? That first compression shape is killer on the small hip muscles.
 

ReluctantGymMom

Proud Parent
May 11, 2020
326
32
Can she easily do a bunch of connected press handstands? That first compression shape is killer on the small hip muscles.
Not at all - she can do a ton of connected Kip cast handstands to drop kip cast handstand, but the combo of super long legs and wrist issues means she can sometimes do a press handstand, not often and never connected
 

LJL07

Proud Parent
Jan 27, 2014
1,856
Yep I’m handing her coach her PT papers and She’ll stay in the gym extra while she finishes ankles, knees and wrists excercises.

Side note: why is your daughter being kept in level 4 or 6 with level 9 skills???
I don't know if this is helpful but my daughter has JRA and a bit of hypermobility as well. It has been a STRUGGLE. She just keeps on going. She is really hoping to do level 10 this season (she's 15.). We ended up hiring a trainer who does individualized conditioning to strengthen glutes, hamstrings, ankles, etc. She also does very regular PT. We have modified her training schedule as well--I would say she trains less hours than an average level 10 but due to the joint issues and hypermobility, training efficiently has been really important and making sure she is getting right conditioning. I sympathize. She has missed two whole seasons due to these issues.

ETA: My daughter also had weakness in her hips, and apparently it affected the whole muscle chain going down her legs. So the trainer has been working specifically on those issues. She was actually casted for months on end before we knew she had JRA, and her whole left side atrophied pretty bad. You might have to get extra outside of the gym, but don't give up if she loves it!

Yes, I have also never heard of a level 4 jumping up to level 9. That's quite a jump. LOL!
 
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ReluctantGymMom

Proud Parent
May 11, 2020
326
32
I don't know if this is helpful but my daughter has JRA and a bit of hypermobility as well. It has been a STRUGGLE. She just keeps on going. She is really hoping to do level 10 this season (she's 15.). We ended up hiring a trainer who does individualized conditioning to strengthen glutes, hamstrings, ankles, etc. She also does very regular PT. We have modified her training schedule as well--I would say she trains less hours than an average level 10 but due to the joint issues and hypermobility, training efficiently has been really important and making sure she is getting right conditioning. I sympathize. She has missed two whole seasons due to these issues.

ETA: My daughter also had weakness in her hips, and apparently it affected the whole muscle chain going down her legs. So the trainer has been working specifically on those issues. She was actually casted for months on end before we knew she had JRA, and her whole left side atrophied pretty bad. You might have to get extra outside of the gym, but don't give up if she loves it!

Yes, I have also never heard of a level 4 jumping up to level 9. That's quite a jump. LOL!
I’m sorry for your daughter but it’s encouraging to hear there’s ways to get there, even if they do require some modifications. PT told us the weak hip muscles cause a chain of the knees being unstable and the ankles being unsteady so I’m hoping she takes it seriously and works on it at the gym.

She’s 10, she just wants to tumble and flip around, she doesn’t want to do endless PT, and she’s frustrated. Last night was the very first time she said maybe I’m not cut out for this, I could move to volleyball - which I said that’s fine but there’s no way to do volleyball without PT for the exact same issues, it’s not gonna work

I think puberty is close and the emotions are high when things don’t go well :( I modified her schedule to 3 days and asked her coaches to keep tumbling and vault to a minimum for now, just send her to do PT when the others are practicing. I’m sure her coaches aren’t happy about it but it’s better than a constant string of minor injuries that don’t recover
 
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JPC13

Proud Parent
Mar 25, 2022
343
If she’s looking for other sports, swimming is very low impact and diving has to be orders of magnitude easier on the body than gymnastics.
 
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Kara

New Member
Jul 16, 2013
28
I’m sorry for your daughter but it’s encouraging to hear there’s ways to get there, even if they do require some modifications. PT told us the weak hip muscles cause a chain of the knees being unstable and the ankles being unsteady so I’m hoping she takes it seriously and works on it at the gym.

She’s 10, she just wants to tumble and flip around, she doesn’t want to do endless PT, and she’s frustrated. Last night was the very first time she said maybe I’m not cut out for this, I could move to volleyball - which I said that’s fine but there’s no way to do volleyball without PT for the exact same issues, it’s not gonna work

I think puberty is close and the emotions are high when things don’t go well :( I modified her schedule to 3 days and asked her coaches to keep tumbling and vault to a minimum for now, just send her to do PT when the others are practicing. I’m sure her coaches aren’t happy about it but it’s better than a constant string of minor injuries that don’t recover
Puberty also tends to exacerbate hypermobility, so that could be contributing to all the injuries you are seeing. Seems like you are really on top of it with the PT and making sure she is resting injuries. If she really wants to continue with gymnastics religiously sticking to PT will be vital. I'd second swimming if she's looking for another lower impact sport to try. Dance can also be really helpful in strengthening muscles and learning how to regulate hypermobility if taught correctly.
 

ReluctantGymMom

Proud Parent
May 11, 2020
326
32
If she’s looking for other sports, swimming is very low impact and diving has to be orders of magnitude easier on the body than gymnastics.
My husband has been suggesting swimming and diving for years - she's not interested. She finished her breakdown and then went "ok I'm done with that, I don't actually want to quit, tell me you didn't tell my coach I want to quit".
 

raenndrops

Coach
Oct 24, 2009
6,788
The 'Wood, Ohio
I’m losing my sanity here, I have to take her to urgent care for an arm X-ray. I don’t understand how it’s even possible to get injured so much
We currently have a L8 on our team with Ehlers-Danlos (Hypermobile Type). She has gotten really good over the years at applying KT Tape ... and she wears braces on both knees and both ankles. This will be her 2nd year at L8. She is a senior this year ... and she will be the second gymnast on our team to compete through senior year with Hypermobile EDS. The other one graduated in 2019.

Based on what I have seen, it is possible ... but she may have to manage her expectations (lower hours, fewer hard landings, more PT).
 
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