For Parents Crossroads

Tmacs

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My son is on the climbing team and competitions are a blast! I hope she enjoys it. But I understand feeling nostalgic… I’ve already made so many fun memories and we are only in level 5/6. And if she quits, I’m going to really miss the parents! And the bonding!
 
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CLgym

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@Tmacs --Thanks for that! It's nice to hear there is good camaraderie in climbing as well. I honestly wasn't sure. It has a totally different vibe. The nice thing is that DD was invited to the "developmental elite" climbing team even though she's a beginner due to her upper body strength, coordination and work ethic. This means she will immediately be with more serious climbers, and will practice at least 3 days per week (I *think* there is a 4th practice day for speed). The program is good, I think, with many national level climbers -- and (bonus!) two days per week she will be at a gym location which is only 10 minutes from our house. Do you mind if I reach out via DM in the future with climbing questions??
 

Tmacs

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@Tmacs --Thanks for that! It's nice to hear there is good camaraderie in climbing as well. I honestly wasn't sure. It has a totally different vibe. The nice thing is that DD was invited to the "developmental elite" climbing team even though she's a beginner due to her upper body strength, coordination and work ethic. This means she will immediately be with more serious climbers, and will practice at least 3 days per week (I *think* there is a 4th practice day for speed). The program is good, I think, with many national level climbers -- and (bonus!) two days per week she will be at a gym location which is only 10 minutes from our house. Do you mind if I reach out via DM in the future with climbing questions??
No problem! The other nice thing about climbing is it is something that she can do for her lifetime. That’s my big problem with gymnastics- it is truly a youth sport only. Yes, you get a few adults here and there still doing it but sports like tennis, climbing, swimming… People are doing it into their 70s.
 
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Oopski

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Just wanted to add that when I "retired" from gymnastics myself as a teenager I did competitive rock climbing for a couple years and LOVED it! The strength she already has will allow her to instantly be successful at it. My older daughter (retired gymnast), who is now a college student also recently got into climbing and is really enjoying it.
 

rlm's mom

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One of my daughters was introduced to climbing and loved it! She temporarily cut back on her gymnastics hours, thinking she might want to switch to climbing. She was also put straight on a competitive team and found her gymnastics skills were perfect for this sport. She did however miss her full-time gymnastics after a few weeks and gave up climbing. But I could see how much she loved climbing so I'm happy for your DD
 

CLgym

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Quick update: My DD has officially "retired" from gymnastics, at least for now. I sent a very awkward email to new gym (which DD had barely attended), and was pleasantly surprised with a super nice reply indicating the door was always open.

In other news: DD accepted the climbing team spot and started this week. She will practice at least 4 days per week, although the practice times are shorter (2.5 hours) and commute is minimal (15 minutes). Although DD is noticeably "behind" the rest of her group (having skipped the beginning team levels), she seems motivated to improve her grip/forearm strength and technique. And, as good luck would have it, turns out her new climbing gym has a highly regarded team program (with national team members/qualifiers); the program is structured, intense and well-organized while maintaining a "chill" climbing vibe.
 

Aussie_coach

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No problem! The other nice thing about climbing is it is something that she can do for her lifetime. That’s my big problem with gymnastics- it is truly a youth sport only. Yes, you get a few adults here and there still doing it but sports like tennis, climbing, swimming… People are doing it into their 70s.
It doesn't have to be. Adult gymnastics is big here in Australia, and more and more people are doing the masters gymnastics competitions. You see people still competing in gymnastics in their 70's and 80's.

The fastest growing gymnastics program around here is a program called " fitter for life" and it is gymnastics for senior citizens. They have entire clubs just devoted to the senior citizens.
 

Madden3

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I felt super sad when my boys quit gym. When my oldest was on his way to quitting I actually CRIED while talking about it to the head coach, poor guy. We invest so much of our lives when our kids are in this crazy sport, it's natural to have a mix of emotions when it ends. As far as guilt, I believe all honest parents can look back to multiple times they screwed up royally, and know they will probably screw up again. Welcome to parenthood as they say. If you know you have a tendency to obsess, a new sport is a perfect time to try to adopt a more detached perspective (or at least the appearance of same.) Climbing sounds really cool to me.
 

CLgym

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@Madden3 – Thank you for this. It makes me feel a little less crazy. I have been surprised by how sad I feel about DD leaving gymnastics. Little things get me. For example, my niece does gymnastics in another state, and yesterday my brother texted me a video of her first giant. Of course I replied with an enthusiastic “awesome!” But it also made me feel sad. I guess it just takes time.
 
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novagymmom

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@Madden3 – Thank you for this. It makes me feel a little less crazy. I have been surprised by how sad I feel about DD leaving gymnastics. Little things get me. For example, my niece does gymnastics in another state, and yesterday my brother texted me a video of her first giant. Of course I replied with an enthusiastic “awesome!” But it also made me feel sad. I guess it just takes time.
I can 100% relate to this. I was so very sad and upset when my daughter decided to switch. I completely supported her because I saw how unhappy she had been in her last couple months at the gym. But I was sad to see it come to an end, and angry because I will never know if it came to an end because of a specific coach or because my daughter was just ready to move on. I also had tears in my eyes when we met with the head coach to tell her. I also know that I'll be happy to see her friends/old teammates as they go on to Easterns this year and likely L10 the following year. But there may be a twinge of bittersweet sadness too.

All that said, a few months out, seeing how much my daughter is LOVING a new sport (field hockey in her case) and how much FUN she is actually having at Xcel practice . . . I 100% know it was the right time and the right decision. She is much happier.

I think with time, as you see you daughter find new passions, it becomes much easier.
 

CLgym

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@novagymmom. It’s so reassuring to hear that excitement over new activities quickly replaces those nagging feelings of loss. I’ve started unsubscribing and unfollowing (seeing a daily email from GK and a hundred National Gymnastics Day posts hasn’t been helpful) but with each click I feel a little sad. Our lives have been so intertwined with gymnastics for so long, it’s hard to pull it all apart! I asked DD today if she missed gymnastics, and her response was that she missed the conditioning (!!) but definitely not the beam :)
 

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