WAG High School Gymnastics

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Proud Parent
Feb 12, 2016
Anyone out there who has a high school team gymnast? My DD is considering trying out for her HS team next year. They use a different type of classification for skills (superior; high superior, etc.) and neither my daughter or I can't find any "cheat sheets" on what it all means. Just when I somewhat understand A vs. B vs. C skills, it sounds like it is yet another language. :) Can anyone help? Also, are there enough HS gymnasts that it is worth starting a group? I searched past posts and haven't seen any for quite a few years.
Every state is different so you may want to add where you live
I would take feedback from anyone, but particularly region 5 :)
I know there will be some differences between states, just curious if anyone else is even out there with a HS team gymnast
I used to coach/judge high school gymnastics in Virginia but I imagine things are different in Region 5, I don't even know how much I remember from Virginia at this point. In the Virginia code the general trend was B skills were Superior (sometimes a combination of A acro skills would also be a Superior), Cs roughly translated to High Superior, Ds (maybe some Cs) were Advanced High Superior, obviously there are exceptions to every rule but that might get you in the right ballpark. Lots of twisting jumps to get bonus on BB and especially on floor where difficult tumbling is tricky if you're competing on a dead floor. You'll also see some older skills that went out of style long ago in JO that meet strange HS requirements.
I moved to a different state and wish high school gym were an option where I am now, it's lots of fun for the girls to get a chance to do a school sport.
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My daughter left club gym to compete HS gymnastics and it has been a good experience for her. We are in Region 5, too.

There is a book that the coach will have that details the classifications of the skills. I never looked to see if it was available elsewhere and honestly didn't try to learn any more than my daughter taught to me. I have a basic grasp but it is all a little confusing!!!. My daughter quickly learned (with the help of older girls and the coach) where the different skills were leveled and how to craft a routine to get the best start values possible.

I think the interesting thing about HS gym where we are is that the expectations to have a 10 start value on the different events is quite high really, especially Bars. Bars requirements call for change of direction, handstand and a release move among other things. You do not see a lot of scores over 9.0 on bars and those scores are usually coming from girls who did club before. The girls who are brand new to gymnastics will often score 4's and 5's.

My daughter was a 7th grade level 7.
She competed her first level 7 meet with a 1st AA placement then a week later had a major training accident that kept her from full training for almost a year. She competed level 7 (except bars) in 8th grade then decided to switch to HS for her freshman year. Our school has a strong program with a history of success so she felt like it was a good alternative that also gave her time to do some additional activities.

She had been very successful with lots of first places and even top 5 AA state placements two years in a row. The neat thing is that she gets recognition in our local paper and is eligible for the local prep sports awards (which she has won a few!). She has increased her skill level on all events so she has grown as a gymnast. She is now being recruited for the emerging NCAA sport of Acrobatics and Tumbling which is super exciting!

I would be happy to share more about our experience if you had questions.
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This will be long but here is what we have seen.

We are in NY. Our HS has a varsity team. Which you can be on starting in 7th grade. In NY it’s supposed to comparable to L8. Judges I have spoken to say it’s a modified 8. No specifics because we are not there yet. I started inquiring as my kid was finishing 6th grade. She was L7 at the time. I sent an email to our school athletic director with her basic info. He replied he sent my email on to the coach. I heard back from her within 15 mins. She is on the team if she wants to be.

And I know why. Because the skill level we have seen at meets (which we went to to see how it was) is staggering. From barely L4 (My kid winced watching some kids....... mom they are going to get hurt....) ..with scores in the 4s to L8/L9 skills. Scoring low 30s to mid 30s. Our area just had sectionals. 2 local girls qualified to states with 35s. And the HS judges are the same judges we see at JO meets. My kid knew them all.

My kid is a decent optional gymmie. Her going to her HS team would be like a college gymnast coming to our club gym to compete with our 8/9 girls.

So as a mom and knowing how hard MS is, I didn’t want her to be a 7 th grade gymnast rock star. So I told the coach we likely wouldn’t compete, only we told coach she wanted to settle into MS. Turns out my kid had an arm injury that made 7th grade a lost season. She did 2 L8 meets at club with L7 skills, so really this year is her first L8 year. And she decided she really wanted a decent L8 club year. So she didn’t compete HS this year.

As a mom I’m glad she didn’t and she is. Our HS team senior, school rockstar athlete.... she did club gym until L8. She stopped club gym a few years ago. Still did HS gymnastics only practicing for their short season.she was still scoring 33s and qualifying for sectionals and good for her. JMO that makes her a rockstar. It was her time to shine...

My kid has finally settled into middle school and her injury is behind her. HS next year for her and she is ready to compete HS. We’ll see if we can work it out with club.

So my experience with HS gym so far.
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It seems that the HS experience can be very different depending on what state you live and also where in the state you live. We are in Region 5 as well but I really think the experience is dependent on where you live within the state since most of the meets are local. My dd just finished her first year as a HS gymnast and loved it.

She was a very successful level 8 last year (top 3 placements at state in all events and aa). She did well this year in HS and went to districts as AA but had a very rough meet at districts and did not qualify for state. In HS only the top 10 ~ 17 gymnasts qualify for state out of districts. (and it was the top 12 of 100+ from sectionals to districts) Here you have to be a really strong level 8 to do well and most of the top gymnastics are either strong level 9s or level 10. These girls still do club meets before and after HS season. My dd doesn't stand a chance of placing in the top 3 at districts or state if she doesn't improve to a level 9.

The scoring for HS is at level 8 (kind of) but it is very difficult to get a start value of 10. Most start values are around 9.7....so the valuing is different in HS. The same bar routine that my dd had in level 8 (and had a start value of 10) has a value of 9.7 in HS. A 9.0 ~ 9.2 is considered a really good score and you do see lower overall AA scores. The first place AA got a 38 but she is a level 10 and she was the only one who got a 38.

My dd HS coach does an amazing job of getting all girls competition time. We have a team big enough to have a JV team and they compete at non conference meets. Some of these girls just started competing one or two years ago. It's awesome how inclusive HS gymnastics can be. :) Also not all girls compete AA, each team only gets 6 girls to compete on each event.

I would love to be part of a HS group
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