For Parents Getting to college/Olympics

LYoungblood

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Hi all!

A parent at our gym said today something that got me thinking. She had stated that in order for a gymnast to:

get a college scholarship she would need to be a level 10 by 14

And

To get to the Olympics she would need to be a level 10 by 10

Now I'm curious if anyone knows more regarding these statements and how true they are. My gymnast is a level 3 at 7 yrs and has only been doing the sport for a little under a year now. Just trying to get an idea of what her options will realistically be.
 

txgymfan

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The Olympics and/ or a college scholarship are not “realistic “ for any seven year old in any sport. She has to love the sport, remain committed for approximately fifteen more years (to get through college). She has to remain relatively healthy, have the right coaches for her, do well in the right competitions on the days she needs to , and a thousand ( or a million) other things need to fall into place for her get a scholarship or on the Olympic team.

It is possible she will get a scholarship based on her age and level but there is nothing realistic about it.
 

PreciousJ

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I've only been a gym parent for a few years, but I think it's safe to say that the statements made by your fellow parent are NOT absolutes. A lot of other things would have to happen to achieve those goals. There are many other parents on here who have elite and NCAA gymnasts; they can give you a more realistic picture.
 

LYoungblood

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I've only been a gym parent for a few years, but I think it's safe to say that the statements made by your fellow parent are NOT absolutes. A lot of other things would have to happen to achieve those goals. There are many other parents on here who have elite and NCAA gymnasts; they can give you a more realistic picture.
And that's kinda what I thought. Like it seems like there are too many factors that go into it for that to be a completely true statement.
 

LYoungblood

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The Olympics and/ or a college scholarship are not “realistic “ for any seven year old in any sport. She has to love the sport, remain committed for approximately fifteen more years (to get through college). She has to remain relatively healthy, have the right coaches for her, do well in the right competitions on the days she needs to , and a thousand ( or a million) other things need to fall into place for her get a scholarship or on the Olympic team.

It is possible she will get a scholarship based on her age and level but there is nothing realistic about it.
I shouldn't have added that last bit regarding my gymnast. I was more interested in getting input on what the other parent said.
 

MuggleMom

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There are a lot of generalities in those statements. I feel like the broader you make the statement the more true it sounds but there are differing paths for gymnasts.
 
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mom2newgymnast

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I agree with the others. It's definitely not something I would worry about for your daughter as a 7 year old.

I've never heard a strict age cutoff like level 10 by 14 in order to have a chance at a scholarship. But I have heard that the chances are higher if you have at least 2-3 years at level 10 before graduating. My dd's gym has a good number of level 10s and I would say most get there around 14, maybe 15 if they have had injuries (8/9th grade). And the majority of them that stick with it until they graduate do get scholarships, although not usually to top 10 schools.

But again, none of that should matter to someone just starting out in the sport. Just relax and enjoy the ride. :)
 

JBS

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Now I'm curious if anyone knows more regarding these statements and how true they are. My gymnast is a level 3 at 7 yrs and has only been doing the sport for a little under a year now. Just trying to get an idea of what her options will realistically be.

Sounds like a great place to start.

We have had kids start team at 9 years old and become Level 10's. These athletes were nothing unusual at the beginning as far as gymnastics goes. They were naturally strong and athletic.

Those statements are absolutely not true, however, if you start looking at upper level gymnasts you will find many that align with those statements.
 
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gymgal

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I have never heard of the Olympic statement and if you look at the national team members, it is clearly not true. 11-12? then yes most are either L10 or have the skills for that level and beyond. As for college, there is some truth to this. Having a gymnast at L10 by 9th grade gives them an advantage in terms of being on the college coaches' radars early in the recruiting process. But that does not mean that achieving L10 later than 9th grade dooms the gymnast. There are many scholarship gymnasts who didn't reach L10 until 10/11th grade. More important than the age/level is the skills the gymnast can offer to the team.

But as others have said, you are in the very beginning of this journey and should just enjoy the ride for what it is - a youth sport that your child enjoys and is getting so much physical/emotional benefits from it. As time goes on, you will have a feel for whether your child might have a shot and then can plan accordingly but that road is very long and can be very bumpy. There are many parents here whose children were headed toward a scholarship (some even had one) or towards elite but injuries and/or loss of love for the sport caused them to retire.
 

LYoungblood

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There are a lot of generalities in those statements. I feel like the broader you make the statement the more true it sounds but there are differing paths for gymnasts.
I wonder why she said that. Idk it kinda bothered me cos I know how varied the life of each gymnast is in the end.
 

LYoungblood

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Sounds like a great place to start.

We have had kids start team at 9 years old and become Level 10's. These athletes were nothing unusual at the beginning as far as gymnastics goes. They were naturally strong and athletic.

Those statements are absolutely not true, however, if you start looking at upper level gymnasts you will find many that align with those statements.
Yea for sure. But I've also looked and seen many that started around my daughter's age that have gone really far. So I was a little taken aback by her comment.
 

LYoungblood

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I have never heard of the Olympic statement and if you look at the national team members, it is clearly not true. 11-12? then yes most are either L10 or have the skills for that level and beyond. As for college, there is some truth to this. Having a gymnast at L10 by 9th grade gives them an advantage in terms of being on the college coaches' radars early in the recruiting process. But that does not mean that achieving L10 later than 9th grade dooms the gymnast. There are many scholarship gymnasts who didn't reach L10 until 10/11th grade. More important than the age/level is the skills the gymnast can offer to the team.

But as others have said, you are in the very beginning of this journey and should just enjoy the ride for what it is - a youth sport that your child enjoys and is getting so much physical/emotional benefits from it. As time goes on, you will have a feel for whether your child might have a shot and then can plan accordingly but that road is very long and can be very bumpy. There are many parents here whose children were headed toward a scholarship (some even had one) or towards elite but injuries and/or loss of love for the sport caused them to retire.
Oh we are totally just along for the ride. Right now she is so in love with the sport and wants to go far. So we support her dreams and tell her it's going to require a lot of work on her end. That mom's statements kinda threw me cos it's like shouldn't we just see what happens instead of putting deadlines on when they NEED to be such and such level.
 
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JBS

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Here is a good article that has been linked to before...

 

Tmacs

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Enjoy the ride! My L5 10 year old absolutely loves it and still thinks the Olympics or UCLA are possibilities! I don’t want to burst her bubble. I guess she could move to a smaller country where I have citizenship... .
But in reality, I would be surprised if she still did gymnastics by high school. But even if she quits, right now, it’s teaching her so much and I love the social network of gym families. We are at a super healthy gym which helps.
I was a college athlete and it was a mediocre experience. We have saved aggressively for college and have zero expectations of any scholarships nor do I want that kind of pressure for my kids. I’d rather have them walk on if they truly love their sports and want to continue.
 

Carabistouille

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Also French gymnast Ludivine Fournon (1996 Olympian, 1995 world floor bronze medalist, 2000 Euro floor champion) started gymnastics at 12 (although she did dance before).
 
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LJL07

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Here is the new European floor champion, Jessica Gadirova's floor routine from 2016. She was born 2004 so she was 11 or 12 at the time. Her tumbling lines are back full, front layout and back 1,5.
Her presentation is amazing! So good.
there really are not many 10 year old level 10s. I am inclined to agree that the odds are better for college they are level 10 by 9th grade. But geez, a scholarship sounds like an impossible dream bc the colleges seem to primarily take elites who drop down to level 10. It’s so frustrating because not everyone wants to do elite or can do elite. I don’t know if maybe it was harder this year than normal due to COVID. My good friend’s daughter is a very solid level 10 as a senior but was uncommitted. She committed to a team, but there really were not many scholarship opportunities.
 
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skygirlpc

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So many people are commenting on the OP asking about her daughter's chance at the Olympics or college gymnastics. I think that allowing our child to dream of those things is part of "enjoying the ride. Even parents looking for factual information about the possibilities of those things, I think, can still be part of "enjoying the ride". I beleive in balance in all aspects of this. If we get extreme on the mindset of "don't think about the Olympics or college level" it can be just as damaging as the extreme of pushing for those things.

Just hold onto those dreams loosely and be prepared to support your child no matter what route they end up taking!
 

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