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Randomactsofcheer

Proud Parent
Apr 24, 2016
72
37
I am familiar with gyms in the San Diego area. There are quite a few very good gyms in north county (assuming you meant north county and not just north in the city), including a couple of YMCAs whose gymnasts compete JO and do very well when up against the private clubs.

Some kids just don't respond to certain coaching styles, regardless of how good a coach is. My recommendation is to do a trial week or two at the second gym where your children were most comfortable. If the gym has quality coaching and your children respond well to the coaching style, then that is the gym you should try first. But there is no reason why you (or your children) should have to commit to a team in the first or two week you are at a gym. I personally wouldn't consider a gym that wanted me to commit to a season without knowing whether or not my kid is comfortable and happy with the gym... If after the trial period you decide this isn't the right gym for your children, move on down the list.

It is much easier to gym shop now when you are new in town and haven't committed to a gym, so take advantage of that!
 
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CAKE

Banned
Proud Parent
Jan 25, 2017
94
So just to be clear, nobody else is on the hook for coaching fees regardless..

This is some weird policy popular only in my current area?

Ive been getting myself riled up thinking I had to pick a forever gym before the end of the first week of June and all of yall just pay as you go mostly.. maybe you lose competition fees, but that's it?
 

MILgymFAM

Proud Parent
Fan
Feb 6, 2014
4,717
42
Twin Cities
So just to be clear, nobody else is on the hook for coaching fees regardless..

This is some weird policy popular only in my current area?

Ive been getting myself riled up thinking I had to pick a forever gym before the end of the first week of June and all of yall just pay as you go mostly.. maybe you lose competition fees, but that's it?

I've lived in SoCal and NorCal and in both places coaching fees are on-refundable and payable in a lump sum assessment (coach fees plus meet fees) well before the season. It's a huge commitment.
 
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CAKE

Banned
Proud Parent
Jan 25, 2017
94
I've lived in SoCal and NorCal and in both places coaching fees are on-refundable and payable in a lump sum assessment (coach fees plus meet fees) well before the season. It's a huge commitment.

Im in norcal right now and if we started on team and then had chosen to move, we would now be out over 2k per girl between attire, comp fees and coaching. I dont have that kind of money to burn.

Thanks for sharing your experience. I was beginning to feel rather guillable.
 

Randomactsofcheer

Proud Parent
Apr 24, 2016
72
37
I've lived in SoCal and NorCal and in both places coaching fees are on-refundable and payable in a lump sum assessment (coach fees plus meet fees) well before the season. It's a huge commitment.

I live in southern California somewhat near where the OP is moving to and we aren't required to pay our coach fees and meet fees in a lump sum. Our meet and coach fees are due two months out from each meet. Or you can pay them in a lump sum so you aren't making multiple payments. The other two gyms DD did trials at in our area worked the same way. Once we pay the fees they are non-refundable, but our gym has been known to give refunds anyway if the gymnast is unable to compete due to an injury or a military move. I don't think other gyms in the area do this, though.
 
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Seeker

Proud Parent
Aug 30, 2012
6,687
USA
We are responsible for coaching fees. That is pretty much the norm as far as all the gyms I'm aware of. Timing of payment differs based on competition season.
 

ldw4mlo

Proud Parent
Feb 13, 2015
6,534
62
We pay our tuition monthly.

Meet fees ahead of the meet.

Coaching fees after the meet, based on who attends, because they are split among the gymnasts who go to the meet.

There is no financial contract. Just a letter informing us how things are billed and when fees are due.
 

raenndrops

Coach
Oct 24, 2009
6,804
The 'Wood, Ohio
What about the coaching fees?

At our current gym Ive got monthly team tuition, coaching fees and competition fees (and attire package).

Is it normal to have to pay all the coaching fees for the season if for some reason it doesnt work out? This seems normal in my area!

We had a gym here where their team coach quit halfway through the season and they brought in a coach that was not working out. Nobody could leave. Well they could, I know a couple who did but they had signed up for autopay and the gym kept charging them. It went to dispute and the gym's contract was the winner. nobody got their money back. It was horrible for those girls and families caught in the middle.
Coaching fees are for coaching during meets. If your DD is not competing at the meet because of a move, you should not have to pay.
When you leave the current gym, just make sure you have cancelled any auto-pay that you may have set up. If you don't have payments automatically taken out, then just stop paying.
 
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skschlag

Staff member
Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Jul 19, 2011
11,282
Region 9
So just to be clear, nobody else is on the hook for coaching fees regardless..

This is some weird policy popular only in my current area?

Ive been getting myself riled up thinking I had to pick a forever gym before the end of the first week of June and all of yall just pay as you go mostly.. maybe you lose competition fees, but that's it?

I am not in Cal, but once season starts, whether you pay lump sum or installments, you are on for all of the fees. You only pay for the meets you have said you are going to, but all coaching fees/travel fees are yours to pay. And we do sign a contract for the season..
 
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D

Deleted member 14190

Both of my daughters participate in gymnastics. We unfortunately have lived in an area where it has been hard to get experienced coaching, but they have been training for their first competitive season at our current gym and were on preteam before that.. My oldest turned 9 at the end of Jan. We took a break from gymnastics for almost a year while she decided if she loved it before making the commitment to go preteam>team. Such a huge mistake I wish I could take back. We should have changed gyms when she lost interest with the trajectory she was on.. not let her try a different sport!

Ive been all over the US at this point, visiting gyms from PA to Dallas, Norcal and socal as we evaluated a move. We have decided that the best place for our family as a whole is North San Diego county.

Oldest DD is between level 3 and level 4 but in the level 3 group for now.. At her current gym they dont even work on skills past the level they are training. During our gym search so many gyms had level 3s that had kips and other higher level skills.. she had never even done drills for a kip!!! She also struggled with her front hip circle till I found a flo gymnastics drill and made her do it. Paid hundreds of dollars in private lessons to have her rip her hands open and get so frustrated.. and then 10 minutes after watching the a video she has it??? I knew we had to seek other coaching. I started driving her an hour away and now, in 6 weeks, she has perfected her mill circle, front hip circle and gotten her kip. Prior to that she had never even worked on a kip and was scolded at Open gym any time she would try to do one for working above her training level. Bars and vault are her weakest events for level 4 mastery. Vault because she has only been allowed to try FHS on the vault a couple times now. Our gym was a cheer gym until 3 years ago and it killed our JO program this year in favor of xcel because point blank they do not want to coach to the rigor of the JO program.

Short story long, with proper coaching she shines.


My youngest turned 6 last week. She has a lot of potential. Coaches seem interested in her. She has no fear, a lot of strength and gumby like flexibility ;) She is also barely 6. She is currently on preteam working out with girls up to 12 years old and her coaches love her. Yes, occasionally she needs a little more explanation, or she will forget what to do from station to station, but we havent had anything but postive feedback and lots of very upbeat and patient coaches. Those coaches bring out good things in her.

Phew.. so there is our background.

At every gym we tried out (even before my oldest got her kip and perfected her mc and fhc) the girls were offered team (9 yr old) preteam (6, then 5 yo) placements.

Until we got to the area we have decided to live in. My oldest is too old.. she was extended team placement but would be the oldest in the training group and and my youngest acts too young for this particular gym so she would only be allowed to go to invitationals.

This devastated my youngest and made her honestly want to quit gymnastics. It was like one eval sucked all the joy out of gymnastics for her. We went all over the country where people seemed very pleased with her..

She said "Mommy, the coach never even smiled, they hated me!"

My oldest thrived on the coaching style (she has begged for a more rigorous coach ) She was the youngest on her preteam and would have been the youngest level 4 at her current team (coaches were already talking about moving her up before competitions started). She is now completely anxious.. Whereas gymnastics used to be very confidence boosting. She is not excited about being the oldest by 2 years. Im hoping now that she has her kip maybe the coach will let her move into the level 4 training group, which I do think she will succeed at.. but I have no idea what they require because most of their girls have a kip by level 3.. so they obviously work way ahead level. Who knows what they will allow!

This gym has dozens of girls in the top 100 every single year. They are obviously doing something right, but I dont know if we are a good fit for them and what Im so scared of is killing my girl's love of gymnastics by feeling like they are behind before they even start. Its hard to go from feeling a head, to feeling almost impossibly behind!

On the other hand. there is another gym that wouldnt be as far of a drive, but only a handful of top 100 scores, the scores are definitely getting better the last few years and the coaching team has great experience, MUCH more positive. They are way better than the gym we are currently so it's a move up either way. This gym also has much better hours and drive time for us.

What would you do?

Would you go to team at a gym that cranked out elites.. or keep it fun for a couple more years.

I dont want to make another mistake
Hmmm...no one in or around San Diego is cranking out elites or even has elites .
 

CAKE

Banned
Proud Parent
Jan 25, 2017
94
Hmmm...no one in or around San Diego is cranking out elites or even has elites .
Near SD county, yes there is. Gyms in OC and Riverside counties are within an hour of where we'll be in north county. Having multiple elites come through your program, state champs etc, scholarship recipients is cranking out elites to me.


The thing that living rurally did was reset my willingness to drive. Im willing to drive to make their dreams work if i need to.

Thank you to everyone who gave me feedback, especially those of you who shared your children's experiences with moving to new gyms.

Thank you for giving me the confidence to make sure that I try to negotiate enough trial time so we know for sure we want to be there..

Also, thank you for encouraging me that there are lots of good gyms in the area.

If anyone has any suggestions of good gyms in SD that have quality coaching, please PM me.
 

amiandjim

Proud Parent
Apr 18, 2015
1,653
45
Just to be clear (since you said you are new to gymnastics), state champions and scholarship recipients is not the same as having elites. Elites are the girls who are on the national team, compete at the P&G championships, world championships, and Olympics. It's very different than having successful JO gymnasts.
 
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CAKE

Banned
Proud Parent
Jan 25, 2017
94
Just to be clear (since you said you are new to gymnastics), state champions and scholarship recipients is not the same as having elites. Elites are the girls who are on the national team, compete at the P&G championships, world championships, and Olympics. It's very different than having successful JO gymnasts.
Thank you, I am new and it has been hard. I do think i understand.

They have had multiple elites and jr elites over the years.. I dont know if they have any in gym right now.

Why is it different than having successful JO gymnasts? isnt JO the build up to elite and if you can produce a high number of level 10s, isnt the next natural progression that some of those level 10s will try for elite?
 

GYM0M

Proud Parent
Jul 23, 2013
1,398
Why is it different than having successful JO gymnasts? isnt JO the build up to elite and if you can produce a high number of level 10s, isnt the next natural progression that some of those level 10s will try for elite?

Yes and no. Some gyms may take their potential elites through JO L10, but many don't. The path to elite often depends on the gym and the gymnast. There's also TOPS & HOPES.
 

e'smum

Proud Parent
Sep 10, 2016
1,061
MA
Thank you, I am new and it has been hard. I do think i understand.

They have had multiple elites and jr elites over the years.. I dont know if they have any in gym right now.

Why is it different than having successful JO gymnasts? isnt JO the build up to elite and if you can produce a high number of level 10s, isnt the next natural progression that some of those level 10s will try for elite?


not necessarily, our gym is a hopeful college gym. i say hopeful b/c our gym is fairly new. our HC was a Penn State gymnast and his wife was also a college gymnast (I think UConn but I'm not 100% sure). his goal is to create college gymnasts. so the goal is to get the kids to level 10 and nationals as many times as possible/young as possible to get them noticed by college recruiters. being an elite gym requires a lot from the coaches - going to the ranch on a regular basis/ect. he may eventually head that way but he is only in his 5th year of owning his own gym and right now his focus is college.

we don't have a lot of elite gyms in our area. they are mostly on the college track.
 
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CLgym

Proud Parent
Dec 22, 2014
1,165
As others have said, the elite track often begins long before L10. At our gym, the most talented kids are training TOPS and HOPES with the hope of getting to a national camp of some kind. To give you perspective, the girls at our gym who are TOPS hopefuls are mostly 9 years old and training L7/L8 skills (not to mention some crazy high physical abilities; one does an impressive 15-20 press handstands in a row regularly!)

I would also agree that "elite" gyms are few and far between in most areas. In our whole State, there are only about four gyms with girls on the national TOPS or Developmental Invite teams, and only one (I think) with National Team members.

Since you are at the early stages of your gymnastics journey, I wouldn't worry as much about elite as I would finding a gym where your girls can be happy and learn. Good luck!
 
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D

Deleted member 14190

Near SD county, yes there is. Gyms in OC and Riverside counties are within an hour of where we'll be in north county. Having multiple elites come through your program, state champs etc, scholarship recipients is cranking out elites to me.


The thing that living rurally did was reset my willingness to drive. Im willing to drive to make their dreams work if i need to.

Thank you to everyone who gave me feedback, especially those of you who shared your children's experiences with moving to new gyms.

Thank you for giving me the confidence to make sure that I try to negotiate enough trial time so we know for sure we want to be there..

Also, thank you for encouraging me that there are lots of good gyms in the area.

If anyone has any suggestions of good gyms in SD that have quality coaching, please PM me.
I am in south OC . You need to add an hour of driving time onto all your gums that you think are an hour away. We have kids come up from North SD and it takes them 1.5 to 2 hours to travel 50 miles . Riverside is a 2 to 3.5 hour drive from SD. The closest gym producing elites is gymmax which is in santa Anna .
 
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Texasmomof3

Proud Parent
Dec 29, 2015
488
Texas
Im in Texas, but on the money side, we pay tuition monthly. We pay meet fees as they are due. We pay the coaches fees for meets the week before each meet, once the entries are in and meet schedules are made. We only pay the actual fees for what our kids compete.
 

Randomactsofcheer

Proud Parent
Apr 24, 2016
72
37
Coming from someone who used to do this commute for work, the drive from north county to south Orange County is a terrible drive. Terrible. Prior to moving to north county, I lived in a rural area and had a long commute to work. It didn't even compare to my north county to Orange County commute. On a good day it took two hours to go from Oceanside to central OC. Going beyond that is even worse. If you are moving to inland North County San Diego, driving to Temecula is not quite as bad. But @coachp is right, going all the way into the Riverside area or beyond is a LONG commute.

While there are not any gyms that are producing elite level gymnasts, there are plenty of gyms in the San Diego area that provide quality training and have gymnasts that are very successful at the state and regional level, as well as gymnasts who go on to successfully compete at the collegiate level.

If I were in your position, I would find a quality gym that is close to your new home that is a good fit for your family. If later on down the line, it becomes apparent that one or both of your children require a gym that has an elite path, explore those options at that time. But in the meantime, go with what makes your kids happy and find a place where they have no problem fitting in.
 

l.c.o

Proud Parent
Oct 7, 2013
1,415
IMHO, I agree with the others who say the second gym sounds like a better fit, depending on driving distance. We've driven an hour to a club, and didn't even last a year - it was too much. Add in a potential second kid on team and practices that may overlap, and it's going to get old quite quickly.

In all honesty, with your 9 year old DD, I think that she is between a rock and a hard place in the first "better" gym. If she competes level 3, she'll honestly likely feel a bit uncomfortable being two years older. If she competes level 4 by the skin of her teeth, then she'll likely feel 'behind' those other girls that have more preparation. Both can potentially set her up for some added frustration towards the sport.

While the first, "better" gym may indeed better prep your DD for college or the 'elite track', the sad reality is that many kids dream of this, but few have the exact right set of circumstances to achieve it (ability, coaching, financial, age, fears, interest, health, etc). So this would not be my biggest concern right now, I don't think, especially with your DD just starting competing.

If your younger DD has a strong desire for team, I would try to find a place that would put her on preteam if at all possible. The impression I get of SoCal is one of high competitiveness. You probably would be best getting her on team sooner vs later - and the 'better' gym has already given you a kind 'not yet'. You probably don't want her in the same boat as your older DD. She's already 6, and you indicated their current level 3s are at a max age of 7, correct? Just something to think about.

Also, how would younger DD feel about not competing while older DD does? It's a potential reality at the 'better' gym.

I'd focus on finding the 'right fit' for your whole family vs. 'best gym/best coaches'. Honestly, as long as the coaching is "good", the talented kids will probably shine no matter where they are. So much the better when the drive is manageable, and both kids have an opportunity at the same place where they both have the potential to really fit in.
 
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