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Onthebeam

Proud Parent
Mar 29, 2019
8
58
DD has been in gymnastics classes since she was a preschooler. She was almost immediately put on a team track. When it was time to move to team, she stayed in pre-team for another year because she was doing another activity that she wanted to finish. The next year she moved to Level 3 at age 10. She didn't seem too old since our gym seems to move gymnasts to team at a slightly older age. She had an OK year, repeated level 3, and had a great second year. That means she started Level 4 at age 12. Most of the season she had AA scores in the high 34 range and then finished the last few meets with 35+. The scores were lowered by one event that always scores in low eights. Our gym usually doesn't move gymnasts up to optionals and won't let them attend state meets unless they are consistantly scoring 35+. Summer training schedules came out and DD will be training with this years Level 3 gymnasts instead of her current teammates. She's very discouraged and feels like they're not even giving her the chance to uptrain and move up. She doesn't think the coaches have much confidence in her and it's affecting her enjoyment and self confidence. She would've been OK with repeating level 4 if they let her train the skills needed to move up and then decided she wasn't ready to compete them. Now she's frustrated about spending all summer with 8-9 year olds just learning level 4 skills and she's talking about quitting gymnastics. I don't know if I should encourage her to stick it out and have a good second year at level 4 even if she is much older than her teammates or just let her move on to something else. Any thoughts?
 

raenndrops

Coach
Oct 24, 2009
6,804
The 'Wood, Ohio
As long as she has another activity that she wants to do instead, I think it would be fine to allow her to retire ... given you (alone or with her) have had a discussion about letting her stay with her teammates and uptrain and decide later whether she moves up or not and they have said no chance.
Also, if there is another gym possibility, you could check into it and see if she would like to switch.
 

NutterButter

Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Jan 24, 2013
898
My DD was an older than average L4 too. I understand your DD's frustration with having to train with kids who are that much younger than her. This was a problem for my DD until her teammates hit junior high, then the age difference was less of an issue. Are there any other gyms in your area? I also think it's a little ridiculous that your gym won't move up athletes or let them go to state if they have less than a 35. My DD didn't hit a 35 at all in L4 but she still had what I would consider a successful season (and she's a L9 now).
 

profmom

Proud Parent
Nov 18, 2011
9,461
Region 7
My DD, now a senior, didn't notch a 35 in old L5 (equivalent of L4). She made it to JO L8 and just completed her last meet as an XCel Diamond. She will be continuing with club gymnastics in college. I'm glad she was allowed to move up when she had the skills safely, even though she wasn't the cleanest.
 

bogwoppit

Gold Membership
Feb 26, 2007
16,879
Just look at gymnastics as something she does for fun, if it does not feel like fun why force her to do it. She finished her season, let her quit. She has other things she enjoys doing. When sports become a chore they really are pointless.
 

mommyof1

Proud Parent
Jan 31, 2012
2,545
The car
Does she still love the sport itself? Based on what you've posted, it sounds as if the gym just isn't a good fit for her any longer, but she might be happy at a different gym with more individualized decision-making and an older team. The move-up decision should be based on skills, not just scores. One weak event might be a legitimate barrier to moving up, or it might not depending on the event and the exact issue.
 

Flyaway

Proud Parent
Jun 1, 2014
1,380
Before she walks out the door forever, if there's any chance she may still want to continue, I think a meeting with the coaches is in order. I think it's completely fair to ask what their goals for your dd are this summer and what they are hoping to accomplish by putting her in that practice group. Until you do that you will not really know why they chose to put her in that group. Be careful how you word it, make your questions centered around dd's journey and not other girls.

Also, my dd repeated both level 3 and level 4. It's a long, tedious haul for sure, lots of 34's and 35's. But it has made her a stronger gymnast and actually kept her in the sport. If she had been pushed ahead I do not think she would have stuck with it.
 
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catherine

Proud Parent
Aug 23, 2016
10
52
My daughter is a 10 year old on an Xcel Gold team. At least 70% of her team is 12 and over (there are about 30 girls on Gold at her gym). If there is an Xcel team in your area that may be a great option. I know not all gyms treat Xcel the same so I would check their philosophies and maybe watch a few practices. Our program is at a gym with a very strong JO program and both are taken seriously by the gym just with different goals and fees/hours. They are definitely different tracks, but the coaching staff for our Xcel team is awesome and the girls are well conditioned, work hard, take competions seriously, and also really just enjoy being gymnasts. Good luck!
 

Akl597

Proud Parent
Oct 16, 2014
49
43
My daughter was in a similar position this year. She was a 9 yo Level 3, repeated as a 10 yo and had a great second year. She was sad not to move up with her friends (including her younger sister), but liked being at the top of the Level 3s rather than the bottom of the Levels 4s. She competed Level 4 this year as an 11 yo. She did better than I expected, with 34s, one 35 and a disaster state meet where she fell on beam twice (her best event) and scored a 33. She started middle school this year and was sad not to be in the musical or do things with her friends. Then she got hurt, got sick, and got hurt again (both minor injuries but kept her out of practice for a bit). In that time the rest of the girls were gaining new skills and she had lost some of hers. So she ended up in a position where she felt really behind, was scared of the new skills and wasn't enjoying things anymore. Last week she switched to the Xcel gold team and she is loving gymnastics again. She is even practicing new skills that she was scared to do with her JO team. The pressure is off and she is having fun again. Another one of her teammates switched with her, so that helped. We talked with her coach and she laid out all the options, she tried Xcel, and decided to make the switch. I'm happy she's sticking with it a little longer because she is a beautiful gymnast, but is never going to be Level 10. If your daughter has something else she really wants to do, then let her retire. But if she still loves gymnastics, maybe she just needs to find a better fit.
 
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Onthebeam

Proud Parent
Mar 29, 2019
8
58
She's pretty much decided that maybe it's time to move on from gymnastics competition, but maybe do a rec class. We haven't met with the coaches and I'm not sure we even should. She seems relieved to have made a choice. She has one or more things that she wants to do instead and I'm OK with that. At first I was sad, but now I'm seeing some advantages (cost and driving back and forth). She doesn't want to change gyms because her two best friends are at the current gym, but we happened to run into an old teammate who left the gym because the commitment became too high. The former teammate is now competing on a Y team that's low cost, low commitment, little travel, and lower expectations. It's something to keep in mind if she decides she wants to compete again for fun and still have time for the other things she wants to do.
 

raenndrops

Coach
Oct 24, 2009
6,804
The 'Wood, Ohio
She doesn't want to change gyms because her two best friends are at the current gym, but we happened to run into an old teammate who left the gym because the commitment became too high. The former teammate is now competing on a Y team that's low cost, low commitment, little travel, and lower expectations. It's something to keep in mind if she decides she wants to compete again for fun and still have time for the other things she wants to do.
I am a big fan of YMCA gymnastics. MY gymmies are on a Y Team. They are getting ready for Y Nationals in June (YG got injured in practice Monday - sprained ankle ... so she is out until cleared by the sports med dr at the local Children's hospital), but she is still looking forward to getting back to practice when she is allowed.
We only practice 7.5 hours a week (3 days x 2.5 hours a day), but we always have to leave 30 minutes early, so they really get not quite 6 hours a week (5-10 minute munchie break a half hour before we leave).
If your DD wants to go back, a Y team is definitely a lower stress way to go.
 
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3cats

Proud Parent
Nov 5, 2018
125
44
I am so glad she has made a decision that makes her happy! And after a little time off, if she misses it, she can explore a gym with less pressure
 
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Onthebeam

Proud Parent
Mar 29, 2019
8
58
Well, I *thought* she had made a decision to retire, but for the past week she's been telling me she still wants to stay and compete. I think she's conflicted between liking gymnastics and wanting to do other things. I guess we may need a meeting with the coaches to decide if she should quit, stick with JO, or maybe try Xcel (or move to a Y team).
 
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