Growth Spurts in gymnasts

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Jan 17, 2008
Hi All,

My DD, 15 years old competing L9, went through a massive growth spurt over the past year. Our guess is approx 4 inches in 1 year. She is now about 5' 5". She is still able to do most of her skills but they are just not as clean/high/powerful as they used to be.

How much do you think the growth spurt has affected her?

Particularly vault, last year she competed a Tuck Tsuk, she was scoring consistently in the low 9s with that vault and even competed her pike a couple times with the same score (L8) this year she is struggling to score higher than a 8.4 on vault. And she is frustrated (not me) it used to be her thing. She says she just feels slow some times.

I have watched some of her older teammates go through this.. and it seems like the ones that have stuck with the sport have 1 yaer where they struggle then they 'get used' to their new bodies and things get easier/cleaner again.

Coaches do you have any insight?

Parents have your gymmie's gone through this?

Thanks in advance
My DD has never really had a growth "spurt". She just kind of gradually grew into her 5'2" inch height, so she never really had to adjust to a new body height..... but, having said that, I have seen girls go through this and if they can just stick it out, they DO get used to the new center of gravity!!!
Two things: If she is determined to work through adjusting to then new body then she will adjust and do fine. Dd has a team-mate that had a similar growth spurt a short while back. It caused her all sorts of troubles, but she endured and is having a great season this year because she never gave up.

Second, if your dd is preforming the same vaults at L9 that she did as a L8 last year her start values will be lower ( my dd vaults yerchenkos, for L8 a pike was a 10sv, but for L9 it is a 9.8). Therefore, her scores will also be lower, even if she gets the exact same deductions as last year. Add to that the needing to get use to her new body and 'feeling slow' and her score may look way lower, but only until she gets control of her new dimensions.
Bigger Baby Bog weant through a massive growth spurt from 12 to 13. From a 4'11" little girl to a 5'5" woman (If you know what I mean) in the space of 10 months. I would say it killed her gymnastically, trying to play catch up with skills and the injuries that just wouldn't stop was too much for her.

A great coach will modify and adapt training, but it is the strength that can be a challenge too, all of a sudden those legs are even longer and those muscles need to be even stronger to cast to hs or kip. SO work on the strength and encourage her to be patient, she will get back to where she was, it will just take a little while.
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Ok. Im 14 and a L7 but I was out (still am) but I am slowly getting back into things and Ive been out for 5 months and trying to get back but I grew A LOT while I was out. I was 5'3 and now im 5'6 which makes a difference. Ive noticed skills get harder, but you start to get used to it, I had one other major growth sourt where it took me awhile to get major skills to look good but it comes. With vault I had the same problem only Im learning tsuks but we finally after a few weeks figured that she would try changing my vault height (which i was against cause im not that strong of a vaulter...) and to my surprise it helped me get on and off and i stretched everything out so it looked cleaner. If her coach hasnt tried this it might me a good idea. Its what ended up helping me. Hope this helps!
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