WAG HOPES

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Aug 7, 2022
25
Could someone please explain to me or direct me to resources on Hopes? I went to the usag website and it didn’t seem to give as useful info as I hoped. Our gym is considering starting up a program and I’m curious about it. Basically what I understand is that it is for like a pre-elite track and you need level 9 skills? I am certain there is lots I am missing and just would love to know the gist! Thank you!
 
Yep. HOPES is in addition to upper-level Optionals (Levels 9/10). It, like TOPs, is NOT required if you want to be Elite or train Elite athletes. I do not like the changes made to the 13-14 age group rules, but at least the minimum age has been raised to 11 (now just raise the Junior minimum age to 13 as per FIG...)
 
Aug 7, 2022
25
Thanks for the reply. So how does one become elite? Our gym doesn’t train elite gymnasts but the focus is shifting with the very recent addition of a TOPS program (which my daughter didn’t qualify for based on age- she just turned 11). There is talk of a HOPES program and my daughter will be competing 8 this season but also has some level 9 skills on each event. Just trying to figure out what this would be like. Sounds like extra strength training? Or is it more skills training? Both? Elite is not something my daughter is aspiring too (but if her interest stays competing in college is something she would like to do) so I’m trying to figure this program out and what kind of a commitment it would be and what a potential path could be.
 

gym_dad32608

Proud Parent
Aug 7, 2018
401
54
If it makes it easier to understand, HOPES is under the Elite program. As has been mentioned, it is for younger gymnasts to train and compete like elite before they actually compete elite. So just consider HOPES and elite one and the same with the distinction being age groups. Yes, the skill requirements are not the same as elite and you are essentially asking these younger girls to show level 9-10ish skills (some may have bigger skills already). The big change is gymnasts have to use FIG settings and to qualify for HOPES, like elite, they will need to meet scores at a compulsory and optional meet. These meets are held a couple of times a year, sometimes in conjunction with larger JO meets sometimes separate. The compulsory meet is just like those L1-5 meets, everyone has a set routine that they have to show, relatively easy to make score here. The optional meets are where they need to show the appropriate skills in a routine. You have to meet a certain score at the compulsory meet to advance to the optional meet and then a certain score to qualify you as a HOPES athlete which means you now can compete in 2 or 3 meets for HOPES qualified athletes. I think these are winter classic, classic and championships? Also, and I could be wrong but I know this for elites, if you are a HOPES qualified athlete you cannot compete in JO. So many many many hours in the gym training for only a few meets.

The specific skills needed are best asked of your coach, but this is my parent's viewpoint/understanding. Training would be just like as elite, expect more hours, pushing harder and bigger skills, and intense conditioning. Extra $$ for the qualifying meets. In my opinion (and I appreciate there are many different ones out there) unless your daughter has a very strong desire to attain that goal to say she was/is an elite OR the indirect benefit of potential college opportunities is important, I would advise against it. And remember there are plenty of girls that make college teams as solid L10s.
 

Ty’s Dad

Proud Parent
Aug 3, 2017
515
40
If it makes it easier to understand, HOPES is under the Elite program. As has been mentioned, it is for younger gymnasts to train and compete like elite before they actually compete elite. So just consider HOPES and elite one and the same with the distinction being age groups. Yes, the skill requirements are not the same as elite and you are essentially asking these younger girls to show level 9-10ish skills (some may have bigger skills already). The big change is gymnasts have to use FIG settings and to qualify for HOPES, like elite, they will need to meet scores at a compulsory and optional meet. These meets are held a couple of times a year, sometimes in conjunction with larger JO meets sometimes separate. The compulsory meet is just like those L1-5 meets, everyone has a set routine that they have to show, relatively easy to make score here. The optional meets are where they need to show the appropriate skills in a routine. You have to meet a certain score at the compulsory meet to advance to the optional meet and then a certain score to qualify you as a HOPES athlete which means you now can compete in 2 or 3 meets for HOPES qualified athletes. I think these are winter classic, classic and championships? Also, and I could be wrong but I know this for elites, if you are a HOPES qualified athlete you cannot compete in JO. So many many many hours in the gym training for only a few meets.

The specific skills needed are best asked of your coach, but this is my parent's viewpoint/understanding. Training would be just like as elite, expect more hours, pushing harder and bigger skills, and intense conditioning. Extra $$ for the qualifying meets. In my opinion (and I appreciate there are many different ones out there) unless your daughter has a very strong desire to attain that goal to say she was/is an elite OR the indirect benefit of potential college opportunities is important, I would advise against it. And remember there are plenty of girls that make college teams as solid L10s.
Hopes you can still compete JO it’s when you qualify Jr Elite you can’t do JO anymore.
 
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You can still compete in the Development Program (DP -- previously called JO) as a TOPs or HOPES athlete. Like he said above, you compete the Elite Compulsory (level 8/9-ish compulsory routines that focus on technical basics) as well as an Optional routine, the compulsories scored on the 10.00 system and the Optional routine scored on a modified FIG system.

Competitions are Elite Qualifiers (Compulsory & Optional), the HOPES Classic (held with the American Classic), and HOPES Championships (held at the U.S. Classic). You can still compete all your normal DP competitions as a HOPES athlete, I want to reiterate.

Go to the USAG Women's Rules & Policies, and down to Chapter 10 will describe HOPES and Elite.
 

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