For Coaches Level 7 Questions

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Nov 9, 2007
Hi- It's always nice to have a coaches perspective. I have been involved in my daughters gymnastics since she was 2, she's 12 now and either competing 6 or 7, and I still have to wonder sometimes "what were they thinking". Our gym has always had specific rules for changing levels. Last year they chose to throw the rules out and more two level 5's to 7 after competing only one meet as a six. This is the first time they ever did this and to be honest one of the girls, an 8 year old was truely talented. She had all the skills needed to compete at level 8 except for bars. But this girl had no committment to the sport. She was gifted with the perfect gymnastics body but had no work ethic. She never wanted to practice and only wanted to compete. She was a "princess" and all of the girls at level 7 were hurt by this move, as well as the level 6's. She always had excuses. this or that hurt, and eventually after scoring lousy at states this girl walked away from the gym, but the aftermath is that we all have questions about what the gym owner is going to do this year. Questions about levels are so frowned upon that I would never ask.​

My dd competed at level 6 last year and scored solid 9's on everything except bars. She has always been"bar challenged", but as a second year 5 two years ago finished 3rd all-around at states, and has a true love for the sport. When they sepatated the girls for practices this season, they put he new level 6's with last years team, and moved two of the 5's to practice with the 7's. Once again we are wondering what is going on. My dd is truely dedicated to the sport, and I am so proud of her, because she has committed to "ruling" level 6 if they compete her there again.​

The last few practices she has been moved to practice with the 7's, because people have been missing/sick at the gym. She has been loving practice soooooo much because this group has a much better work ethic, and she landed her full on both vault and floor, and her flip-flop on the beam, and they are working giants which her group has not been doing. Yesterday one of her coaches, she has 4, told her she should get used to working with this group, and her smile when she came home from the gym, just beamed. I am so concerned that they will not follow through with this carrot that was dangled, but I am afraid to talk to her coach about it. I don't want to be a "gym Mom" if you know what I mean...Am I out of line, or should I make an appointment with the head coach?:confused:



It sounds like your daugther would be more than fine to move to level 7, and don't be too frustrated about bars--that's typically the hardest event for most girls. As both a coach and a gymnast I believe communication is key. As a gymnast it is vital that you communicate with your coach and feel that you are able to have a means of open communication amongst each other. As a parent it is also vital to have a communication link with your daughter's coach, just as you would with their school teacher. I think parents should be invovled to a degree in all aspects of their childrens' lives, so I don't think it would hurt to talk to the coach.

If you do decide to talk to the coach, I would suggest talking to the coach and say something like "_____ (Your daughter) came home and told me that she worked out with the level 7 group tonight, and she absolutely loved it!" (go on to tell them how happy your daughter is that she's been practicing with this group and what not). Then, respectfully ask them what their goals are for your daughter. Explain to them that you'd like to be on the same page and understand what is going on and how everything is working/planning out---especially since gymnastics is confusing to many parents (i'm not saying that it is to you, but it is to many parents).

You could also talk things over with your daughter and set goals together; it's important that you're aware of your daugther's own personal goals. Then, you can also take this to the coach if you decide to talk to them. You could say that you've talked to your daughter and you wanted to see if her goals were attainable, etc.

I don't think you'd be stepping on any toes if your curious as to you asking a coach to explain how your daughter is progressing and what. Personally, as a coach I love it when parents are invovled in their childrens' gymnastics, and when they ask questions (Just please don't be a helicopter parent).
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