Parents It is time to switch gyms....

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Proud Parent
Jul 11, 2011
But DD is not on board. It has become clear to me, over the past year, that it is time for DD to change gyms.

However, anytime I attempt to mention looking into another gym to my DD (Level 8, training 9, and 11 yrs old), she refuses to consider it.

I am reluctant to say anything negative about her coaches to her, so I am limiting myself in the reasons to her as to WHY I think she should change. She is adamant that considering another gym would be a betrayal to her coaches and her teammates.

Anyone else ever been in the same situation, and if so, how did you handle it?
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Initially, we paid too much attention to what DD wanted, thinking that gymnastics was her thing, and she needed to decide or be on board. So, we didn't switch. Finally (8 months later), we realized it was too much for a 10 year old to figure out and made her switch. She's been thrilled ever since.
I think it really depends on why you want to change.
If it's a borderline abusive relationship or a serious safety issue, then you just move and provide a simple explanation to her. Then give her the options - "you are not going back. Now, you can either quit or you can choose to try out a new gym."
If it has to do with family finances or distance issues, then I would take the same route but I would provide more information because she needs to understand the amount of sacrifice the family endures for her sport.
If it has to do with concerns about whether the gym can get your dd where she/you want to be, then I say she has more stake in the decision - you give her the information and you work it out together. She may decide she would prefer to stay and risk not getting as far due to limited coach experience and that has to be ok because it is her sport and she has to feel comfortable.
Thanks for the input. It's not so much getting her where she wants to go, as much as safety issues ( those Level 9 skills, ugh) , equipment limitations in her gym, and my gut instinct that if things continue as they are, DD will not be happy with her gymnastics and will likely quit.
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I made DD change gyms about 7 weeks ago. She moved to the gym her brothers compete at (so easier for me) once the coaching there was up to par. There is a financial benefit to us as well. She knows those reasons.

The real reasons she moved were to do with her old coach, whom she loved terribly much, who was inconsistently there, financially unstable, sometimes untruthful, not committed to the gym, and several other concerning behaviors that were effecting the older girls (and my daughter was 11). I also had concerns that the coaching style wasn't working as well for her as it had when she was a compulsory. Although she had had a successful L7 year, she had not progressed skillwise at all, and was not uptraining, etc. I wasn't sure the change would work for her gymnastically (still not ) but I was sure that developmentally she needed it (whether she thought so or not!).

I do think that the new gym is a better place for her long term - she is being pushed to do things more independently, getting much better conditioning/stretching, and a more personal approach (old gym had "level 8 routine" that all did, etc...)...I'm still not sure she won't quit, and she is still very upset with me off and on...but gaining new skills. I told her she could quit once ready to compete as not to quit on a down. We shall see. It was more important to me for her to be in a healthy, safe environment than stay a gymnast...but I'll be super sad if she quits!
I have just about decided that I would rather DD quit than continue for another year in her gym. I just want her to be happy and confident with her gymnastics. But-

I frequently see coaches talking on cell phones during practice.

In addition, the other day, I saw my DD run thru her routine in its entirety for the first time in months (she had not been doing her BHSBLO, but it appears to be coming back). The floor coach stood with her back to my DD during her entire routine. My DD was the only gymnast in the entire group of girls on the floor rotation doing anything.

My husband is not really on board with a gym switch due to commute time (next closest gym is 45 min drive) ... So - I have an uphill battle. Maybe I'm just venting. How can my DD be happy and confident with her gymnastics if her coaches appear (to me?) to care so little?
Is it possible for hubby to watch one of these training sessions? A picture is worth a thousand words and all that...

I think you've already made the decision :)
I frequently see coaches talking on cell phones during practice. How can my DD be happy and confident with her gymnastics if her coaches appear (to me?) to care so little?

We have come across this too :( And when one coach does this, it opens the door for all the other coaches to think it is okay...
Wow! That's terrible! (the coaches on cell phones/not watching) 45 minutes is a long commute but considering what we pay for coaching, I expect the coaches to give my child their full attention. Would it be possible to speak to the HC about it?
I have made 2 gym switches and they have been MY decision .....I pay for the coaching and if it's not happening, we move on. No discussion, case closed.....and they have thrived every time:)

I also find it easier for them to tell their buddies that it "was my mom's decision" ....
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Fast forward 7 years, my DD1 who was 10 and fought against changing, now realizes the mistake she (and I) made..... Four years after I initially tried to move them, I made a decision to move regardless of their feelings, if they wanted to continue and be successful (overall success, not "winning"). DD1 at that point was ready to retire, DD2 has excelled like we had never dreamed. DD1 looks at her super and sees what she also could have accomplished had she been willing to make the change.
Well, hubby finally agreed to a gym change.

I told DD this morning that I was pulling her out of gym, it was my decision, and she wasn't going to have a say in it. I informed her that I haven't picked out a new gym for her yet. We will call a few gyms and try to get a try out, and she can have input on picking the new gym.

Her response was like I had just told her that we were going to Walt Disney World!

So - it appears that I have made the correct decision. Thanks to everyone for their input. I kind of wish I had made the decision at the beginning of the summer - a better time to change - but after her response, I know that it was the right decision right now, at least.
One of the big reasons we left our old gym was the coaches were always on their cell phones.

So glad your dd took it well. Hope you find a great gym for her.
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I have to say, I don't complain much but if I saw a coach on a phone while working with our team, I'd be talking to HC or the owner. That's about respect and safety (not to mention the amount of money we pay). I can honestly say I have never seen one of our coaches on their cell unless trying to find music, info for a gymnast or recording one of the kids.
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