For Parents Her Journey Continues with a SMILE!

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Proud Parent
Jun 14, 2019
I feel like all of you have taken this bumpy journey with my DD and me as we have navigated departing a toxic environment and moved on to a new one. It funny, when I first started documenting this journey, more for my sanity than anything else, I was hesitant to use the word toxic. The gym wasn't abusive per se, so I had a hard time categorizing it. However, after taking a step back and hearing what other retired families have to say, it was in fact toxic and I have no problem saying such.

My daughter started at a much smaller gym. She was the ONLY optional level girl. Their other potential optional had competed 2 seasons of Xcel gold and was making the jump to 6 or 7. She has officially made the jump. One of my DD's best friends who had been on team with her since level 3 also left the old gym and came to the new gym, so they officially have 3 Optional level gymnasts. We have been there for 2 months and my daughter is thriving. She threw her giant flyaway for the first time since February. Through conversations I found that she was purposely going over in her handstand so as not to have to do the giant so her former coach wouldn't yell at her to "fix it". I also sent videos of her giant flyaway from January and her giant flyaway from a couple of weeks ago (first day she did it at the new gym) to mygymjudge and the feedback was .05 for flexed feet in her giant and .2 for height and body shape in her flyaway. Both videos garnered the same deductions. Her previous coach told her that the giant flyaway was NOT competition ready for .25 in deductions. I still can't figure out why. But it was enough for my daughter to avoid it and the verbal tongue lashing by going over in her handstand. Yesterday I watched DD do her free hip handstand and get real time corrections from her coaches. When she was working her toe on handstand, the coaches actually videoed her, then found a youtube video of someone doing the same skill to show DD where she needed to snap down from the handstand into the toe on. The visuals and real time feedback made a huge difference and she was making progress in one practice. What a difference the environment makes. DD is also working double backs into the pit, she is working BHS BHS on beam (previous series was BWO BWO and a separate BHS). She is going to repeat level 7 (which with COVID closures and a truncated meet season I feel is going to happen to a lot of gymnasts), but that gives her an entire year to uptrain level 8.

Another 2 girls from the old gym as looking at crossing over to the new gym. Their parents are seeing withdrawn kids, disappointment where there used to be joy, and as they see my DD smiling at gym again, they are wanting a more positive environment for their athletes. I know of at least 7 who have already left (some to new gyms, some have just quit) and know at least 3 more who are weighing their options. I feel so grateful and thankful that we found a new gym home and a way to reignite my daughter's passion for gymnastics and confidence in herself.

Thanks for following us on this journey.


Proud Parent
Dec 22, 2014
This is such a great report! Thanks for sharing.... And perfect timing as I was skimming posts looking for exactly this kind of boost as we consider our own options.
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