Parents First USAIGC Meet Report & Some Sibling Issues (long)

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Proud Parent
We had our 1st USAIGC meet last night. The session before us ran late, so we didn't get in on time and first event didn't start till after 7pm. Plus we had 24 girls entered, 20 competing with 2 coaches...which should have been fine except they were trying to rush things along and we had half squad move ahead to the next event w/o a coach!

So...big DD as you know has had a rough month. She sprained her ankle the day before Level 8 sectional and had to scratch. They petitioned her into states but never got a response, so no competition. Last Monday she slammed her arm so hard into a beam that it was swollen and she missed 2 days of practice. In addition, they only had ONE age group for Gold - 11 and up so her entire team was competing against each other. First event - beam, she looked good till she fell on her roundoff, 8.6. FX - only the 3rd time competing her new routine, 9.0 (6th place). Vault - half/half 8.2 (scoring very low, our girls who normally score high 8's and 9's were only scoring low=to mid 8's. DD got 8.2. Bars - we had our new coach there so I was excited to see if that would make a difference. She has been working with him on bars. She did her entire routine - handstand pirouette, giants, I was so proud!! She only scored 7.50 - most of the deductions were from her giants, I think - legs apart, back arched...however still an improvement from previous scores So she ended up with a respectable score of 33.3 which qualifies her for States.'s when the problems started.....

Little Monkey is a 2nd yr Level 5, which in our gym translate to Bronze level for USAIGC. This is her 3rd yr competing bronze and she is an event specialist for Silver on floor. This meet, the age group was 6 to 10, DD is 8. She started on vault which is not her strong event b/c of her size and (lack of) weight. However, with new coach, she has been steadily improving - 8.75 (3rd place). Onto bars, for this she doesn't need a bar change (thank GOD) so she only does kip cast, free hip, back hip, kip cast, sole circle dismount. They even took out her flyaway (not sure why she did it all last yr). 9.0 - first place!!! Onto beam. Now b/c of the size of the squad they were split into 2 halves. First half competed and IMHO the judge was very generous with the bronze group (we were sitting right at the end of the beam so I noticed the routines/scoring the most). Anyway, DD does a very solid routine and they put up her score ... she got 9.7 :shocked: I nearly fell off my chair and of course her teammates were going nuts too! Onto floor, first time new routine, she did first the Bronze requirements - 9.0 and at the end of the rotation, did it with the silver requirements, 8.65. SIlver age group was 8 to 13 so all of the silver team (our level 7's) were in this age group along w/DD. For floor bronze level, she placed 1st. Her AA for bronze was 36.45 - first place. Her beam score was the highest in the entire session and her AA was 2nd highest. The announcer made a big deal about the beam. She was so excited!!!

By the time Little Monkey finished her first Fx routine, big DD was visibly upset. My friend was calling me from the other side of the gym to tell me "to be nice" to her. Big DD works really hard but she does not have the same drive and determination as Little Monkey. Also, she's coming off injuries and before that had strep so she has not been working out as hard over the past 2 months. AND her skills are so much harder.... all that taken into consideration, she had a very good meet. But of course she doesn't want to hear that, she is focusing on the fact that her little sister is getting SO MUCH attention = and now at 10:30 pm and starving, she was having a major meltdown!! I hate drama. My kids know I hate drama. She doesn't dare say anything to me but the fact that now the entire gold team (and parents) is coddling her is enough to drive me insane!!! The HC and I both saw this coming when the little one first started competing. His fear was that one day they would be the same USAG level and that would just send Big DD over the edge. I think that was partly the reason for keeping LM at L5 this year, to give big DD that much more time to score out of L8. So as much as I try to encourage her and be supportive, she's always been the type of kid for whom things came easy (school, gym, cheering, swimming, etc). Now that she actually has to WORK at something, it is getting her down, and having her sister being the star is not helping matters. I have tried to teach her that you should be happy for others who do well, and not be jealous, but it doesn't seem to be working. Now what? Do I resort to bribery????

Any advice?
Sorry this was so long. Video's in a day or 2....
Just read your post, but have to get ready for really quick...WOOHOO for little monkey! I'm sure if Big Monkey thought long and hard about it, she'll remember all the times she shinned at a meet & was rewarded and recognized while LM watched on and waited for her day. Having three kids myself I can totally relate to drama and sibling rivalry two boys are only 2 1/2 yrs apart. Advice to Big Monkey...getting to L8 is AMAZING in itself, and she should be so proud of that alone. Maybe use this time on IGC to work on those skills while she been on the injured list! And tell her SHE has fans on CB too, we are always excited to hear about her meets. And, I have a hunch LM idolizes her too and does well because of what SHE has done in the gyms as a role model! ((HUGS)) all around to both of your winners!
YOu had a day like mine didn't you? It is very hard to see siblings suffer. I had one very sad one in the car last night, and one who was happy for all her acheivments. I try so hard not to get into the coaching type place with gym, they have to learn to have it about themselves and their work. It is so hard to see them sad, but my oldest is also one who did really well when she was little and now neds to work harder on perfection and in gym it is not enough for her to suceed. I guess that in the end they either will deal with it or give up.

I do not think bribery will work, but finding ways to make other things in her life imnportant, mayb e take the focus off gym for a while whilst she is perfecting those brand new skills. It really is a tough sport.

Great job for little gym monkey and YAY to the beam score and all the great hoopla that came with it. Your system sounds very interesting, I think if I had to move down there I 'd be looking for that for my girls. Lots of fun and lots of options.
Wow! Now that's a lot to deal with. Makes me so happy only one of my DD is a gymnast! I always wondered how things went, when you had 2 sibs in the same sport. It is a fine line you walk for sure. Yes, we all know that Big Monkey has much to be proud of...but I'm sure she's not feeling that right now. That is one of the things I hate about this sport. You can be really good, but if you aren't up on the doesn't seem to count for much:(. I can see how all these hard working young girls can get so frustrated. And on the other end...Little Monkey does deserve the fuss being made...9.7 wooo-hoo!!! That is quite an accomplishment:D. As Blackie says...I'm sure see looks up to her big sis as her Bigger Monkey needs to be proud of the role she plays there too. Good luck in dealing with this situation. But you obviously have 2 very talented DD's! Great work Momma Monkey:)!
Wow,congrates on that beamscore.That is amazing.
I have 3 daughters and there is a lot of jalousy.Thank goodnes only one does gymnastics.But we had similar situations outside the gym were the younger one does better than the older one.It is hard being a parent.
Level 8 is a big accomlishment in it self.I'm shure being sick and injured took alot out of her.Tell her not to be so hard on herself.Make shure to tell both of them how proud you are.
Its hard when you have siblings that compete they will always compare each other its part of being siblings. Honestly I think you should just ignore it as hard as it may be. This is an issue the girls have between them and they will figure it out one way or another (even if it's not the way we are hoping for).

Up until Mar 08 I had a son competing ( he dislocated his knee cap and was done) and still have a DD competing. Similar situation here . As good as my son is at things he does have to put more effort into it. My DD she just has to think about it and she can do it (gym, school etc). Drives my son crazy.

the only thing I've ever told them was if its not fun any more then its time to start something else. the drama, tears etc I just don't deal with and let the coaches deal with that. I always encourage the kids and point out the really great moves or improvements they have. We keep a note book of their scores and I have developed an excel program to track their progress with a trend line in it. So they can see just how much they have improved. The only areas I want them to look at is a comparison to themselves and I do what ever I can so they can see just how far they came.

My daughter this year came in 11th in the state (only 2 tenths of a point between her and the girl who came in 1st) Was she sad not really because that chart we made was a visual she could look at and see that her scores improved 15 % - 20% over the competitive season. And the trend line on the charts just kept going up.

I never compare them to each other but I do point out the great improvement they made against their own scores and I will give incentive items if they meet their personal goal for their meet. Each meet we make a personal goal like one of her first's for this year was to stick the Backwalk over on the beam if she did that we did a mom and me day at the nail salon (she loves her nails done). This way even if she doesn't win she has met a goal she set for herself and can feel a sense of accomplishment.

Hope that helps
I don't have any advice because I haven't been in the situation before, but I wanted to say congrats to Big Monkey because she did her whole bar routine, woohoo!! And her other scores were very respectable, too. Little Monkey, congrats to you as well way to go on that beam routine, first place on floor, beam and AA!

Sibling rivalry is always hard. I definitely hope that my little one wants to do something besides gymnastics. I am going to try hard to avoid it for as long as we can, with dance and other classes. I think the only thing to do is point out each of their own accomplishments to them, talking about the positives in the meet, etc. They have to work out a lot of this on their own, just have to be careful not to inadvertantly cause more rivalry between them. I love the book Siblings Without Rivalry.
I wish I could offer you some advise, but I have none. Dd is my only in gymnastics and ds does his complete own other things.

You are completely right though in that big dd is doing much harder skills and basically the winner of the meet comes down to who can stick all 4 routines -clean.

Little dd does deserve her praise as she did very well.

Big dd needs to not compare herself to little dd as it is the same as comparing apples to oranges.

You are in such a tough situation, I wish you the best of luck!
Your post reminds me of the one reason I'm happy my oldest DD went to HS gymnastics--her younger sister is the more talented gymnast--things come more easily to her than her older sister. And, while she doesn't show it outwardly, I know it's tough on her seeing her little sister do so well at level 7 her first year--whereas Sami really struggled to place on events. I've been honest with her--that her sister has more natural talent--some people just do. But you stay in gymnastics (or anything) because you love doing it--not to place or be the best.
Thank you everyone, for your kind words and input.

Cathiann - I chuckled when you mentioned HS gymnastics..... I know when Kelsey first started having issues, I thought, just let us get to HS and it will be better. The HS coach knows her already and I'm pretty confident she'd have a spot on the team when she gets there (she's only in 6th now). Last week she said to me, when I get to HS I'm going to stay here (club) and do cheering in HS not gymnastics!
OH Man, I am headed in the same direction with my 2. I also HATE the drama, is it really necessary? I am so sorry that your older DD is having such a hard time, it sounds like your doing all you can to explain to her that she did not have the prep time coming into it, and L8 is ALOT different than L5. Things can go really wrong so much faster. I dont have any advice for you, just sending you some (((((hugs))))
It has got be rough having two kids in the same sport,I only have the 1 kid.They both had an awesome meet both qualified for states!

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