For Parents Is the travel meet worth it?

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welovethegym

Proud Parent
Oct 12, 2022
46
Region 6
Our gym doesn't do many out of state/larger national meets, especially not for Xcel. This year, they're sending P/D/SA to a big meet in Florida. We live in New York. The meet is optional, but obviously DD really wants to go. However, it is in the middle of the school year, so it would mean having to miss and catch up on school work. And it would obviously mean a flight for us, and a hotel, and meet fees. So my question is, is it worth all the $ to go just for a day or two?
 

gym_dad32608

Proud Parent
Aug 7, 2018
404
54
That's a question up to you. Is it worth it to pay to do sports? I mean relatively, none of our silly obsession/devotion to the sports our children do are worth it from a monetary stand point. No, a travel meet is not going to impart some great new skill or talent. So from a purely athletic standpoint, a travel meet is not "worth" it. But the as the saying goes, its not the destination but the journey. Spending time with family, creating memories, all those things involved in a travel meet, those are the only things we take with us to our graves. So again, its really up to you, your family situation and what fits.

Perhaps the only disclaimer I would say is if your child is close and striving for a college position and needs all the exposure they can get. Then perhaps its a different discussion.
 

JBS

ChalkBucket Founder
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Sep 3, 2005
7,625
Wisconsin
Our gym doesn't do many out of state/larger national meets, especially not for Xcel. This year, they're sending P/D/SA to a big meet in Florida. We live in New York. The meet is optional, but obviously DD really wants to go. However, it is in the middle of the school year, so it would mean having to miss and catch up on school work. And it would obviously mean a flight for us, and a hotel, and meet fees. So my question is, is it worth all the $ to go just for a day or two?

Totally up to you. If you go... make it an experience and have some fun... don't just do gymnastics. Why not extend it to a third day and see some sights?
 
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gymgal

Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Aug 22, 2008
4,686
Is it a large meet in a tourist area? If so, It would be a great experience for her so in that sense, it is worth it. Is it going to set your family behind in ways you don't think you can easily manage? Then it's not worth it no matter how much she wants to go. We used to plan small vacations around the bigger travel meets to the whole family could participate
 

Aussie_coach

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Jan 4, 2008
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When you ask a retired gymnast what they’re favourite, most cherished memories of their time in the sport is. You often find it’s the travel meets.

The excitement, the team bonding, discovering new places.
 

Soaring

Coach
Gymnast
Apr 12, 2019
49
21
Missing a couple of days of school will really not make any difference in the long run. It would just come down to whether such a trip is affordable for your household. I would say it is worth the money if you can pay for it without making serious sacrifices
 

WV Gym Mom

Proud Parent
Mar 7, 2022
71
49
Its completely a personal decision for your family...my daughter's gym does a Florida Travel Meet every other year. A few don't go, but most do. Some do the whole Disney experience and stay the week after- some, like my family, just drive and stay at a hotel for a few days and keep it more low key.
 
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Feb 2, 2022
78
44
We have more travel meets (3 require flights) than we do local meets this year, which I think is a bit aggressive for my 9-year old Xcel Gold daughter. But she's PUMPED. We're going to make one a girls weekend with just her and I and the others will be mini family vacations where my husband and son come along. I was annoyed when I got the schedule but had to get over it - she LOVES gym and this will be a year where we kind of test whether she's ready for more - time, skills, sacrifice for the sport, etc. (She's working to test out of L4/L5 and start L6 in June and I'm apprehensive about the commitment for that). From a cost standpoint, it's ridiculous. But we're going to make the best of it!
 
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ZB55

Proud Parent
May 6, 2020
49
For any of my kids' activities' non-required expenditures and trips, I weigh the item/event/experience against my child's passion level and time invested. For my daughter this meant that we really stretched the budget to do a travel gymnastics meet (driving instead of flying to keep costs down) when she was a multi-year optional because she has proven herself to be so invested in her sport, and she enjoys competitions. Personally, I would not have made that same trip if she was a brand new level 3, or if she was indifferent about competing, but others did.
 
Oct 12, 2022
5
42
We live in Las Vegas and our gym travels to Florida for the Magical Classical (Disney Themed Meet) every other year. We went last year for Level 2 along with half the team and it was great for the kids and families to bond outside the gym. We went to the beach after the meet and most of us stayed extra days to go to Disney World. It was an expensive trip and something that wasn’t necessary for Level 2. We treated it as more of a family vacation at the end of the day.
 
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welovethegym

Proud Parent
Oct 12, 2022
46
Region 6
Thank you all for the advice! We will have to see if enough people are even interested enough for the gym to send a team, I didn't realize that until she came home from practice yesterday! But if they do end up sending a team, everyones input was very helpful :)
 

JessSyd

Proud Parent
Oct 10, 2013
327
Sydney Australia
We’ve done a few travel meets, and it’s pretty clear that they are going to be what she looks back on as highlights.

A few years back, partly as a result of revising their procedures after Nasser, Gymnastics Australia switched to a recommendation that, especially for younger gymnasts, gymnasts travel with a family member rather than the team. So clubs that traditionally took the girls and just a couple of parents as chaperones and made a team bonding event out of it had to switch to a ‘see you at the venue on the day’ model.

And it has been so interesting watching how the coaches have responded to the change. The ones who were gymnasts themselves go out of their way to try to recreate their own travel experiences for the girls. There may not be a team bus anymore, but once we get there they’re like ‘team theme park day, team dinner, let’s all meet at the beach’ etc.

Because they remember how for city based gymnasts (who live where all the usual meets are anyway), so much of the travel meets was actually not about the actual competition.

I know one club where the girls go up, stay in different places, and don’t do anything together except the actual competition and I always wonder why they go. Like, that is four super-expensive hours of sport and a whole lot of travel hassle when the season is otherwise over and you had plenty of non travel meets.
 
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