Level Question?

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Aug 3, 2008
Alrighty.....I saw another post from a cheerleader turned gymnast Mom about what level her dd would be starting at and your responses were great! So my turn....:D

My dd is 7, she has been cheering for 2 and 1/2 years. She picks up on tumbling very fast. She has the basics down forward/backward roll, handstand, cartwheel, roundoff, front walkover, backwalkover, 1 handed cartwheel, handstand to a forward roll, backward extension roll. She also has a very solid back handspring, standing and round off back handspring series, front handspring and recently started throwing her round off back handspring tuck on the floor and a RO back handspring layout on the tumble track. She has also been working on cleaning up her standing tuck, and learning front tucks, aerials etc...

She took a short 5 week gymnastics class (which I thought was just a tumbling class and it's what got her hooked on gymnastics lol....) at a local dance studio. So obviously her experience on the other events is minimal

Because of her tumbling ability, she went from the beginers class to their advanced class at the first class....so she came out of the class being able to do a cartwheel, back and front walkover and a back walkover back handspring on their low beam (that's all they had...it was about 2-3 feet off the ground). Run, jump onto and to a handstand off the vault (does that make sense??) And go from hanging under the lower uneven bar to holding herself upright on the bar at the hip level, by kicking her legs up and over the bar (Please forgive me....I'm clueless on gymnastic terms still.....) Is that a Kip? and once up theremaking it a full rotation around the bar....

What level do you think she would be starting at? Thanks so much for any info....I'm so new to this, I know nothing! THANKS again!!! :D


From looking from a skills based point, level 2. Sounds like she can do a bar pullover. If she can do a pullover from long hang, I would seriously be impressed since I don't come across many cheerleaders who can as pull strength isn't their forte.

Many gyms would probably place her in a preteam level 4 or level 3/4 squad hoping she caught up her bar and beam skills over time. Level 4 has that handstand on beam that can be tough besides just not falling on beam. If she can tumble, I can't see how she would have any problems with the level 4 she may not be familiar with. Some other gyms may not be that picky about it but it depends on their program ( high level elite program or recreational compulsory competitive programs ).vault past teaching her how to run and punch a board.

Once you say cheer, many coaches and gym may be cringing about her form so they are going to seriously look for her form and stress basics and positions
Level 4 typically takes more booster club participation besides training hours than competitive cheer. Prepare yourself for that. Expect at least 3 days a week, maybe 4 at least 2, 2.5, or 3 hours. Probably not more than 10 per week.

Now that was talking about artistic. If they offered Power Tumbling, she could easily be tumbling level 6 or 7. During those levels, I thought it was something like 4-6 back handsprings in a row after a round off. 3 I think is for level 5.
Mar 5, 2008
North America
Hi NewGymMom! Your situation sounds EXACTLY like my daughters. My 9 yr old dd cheered for 3 years and is now doing gymnastics. Like your dd, she had many of the floor skills and tumbling but had to learn all the other events. We quickly found out that technique in gymnastics is essential and many of the skills are a lot harder than they look. My dd was on pre-team for about 6 weeks and is now training level 4. She is very strong so bars came pretty easily for her although you simply can't just muscle through the routine--you have to have technique and learn the proper way. She is doing well on beam, although since she didn't have any real dance background, the dance and "graceful" elements seem to give her some trouble right now (LOL).

Since being in cheer, her tumbling form needed work and she had developed a hesitation/fear issue that we are working on. She is definitely doing much better now that she is in a gymnastics environment.

Be patient and you will see that your dd will probably advance very quickly. Remember, it is not cheerleading, so they do go slower because form and technique is everything in gymnastics.

Good luck!
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It sounds like a pullover on bars and she is probably working on back hip circles as well. Many cheerleaders come in with great tumbling - but be patient because there are 3 other events. A good gymnastics coach will still keep her challenged tumbling wise while teaching her the basics on the other apparatus. One of my dd's did allstar cheer as well and there is definitely a difference with technique and form between cheer and gymnastics. You very rarely hear a cheer coach tell a girl to point her toes in her back tuck - kwim.

Good luck to your dd.
Aug 3, 2008
Thank you for your posts. Just from the small gymnastics class she took this summer at the dance studio she learned that the tumbling was very different.

Perfect straight legs and pointed toes were definitely not a high priority in cheer tumbling lol. But she is getting the hang of it pretty quickly. As she said to me after one of the classes "They want it to look prettier Mom, that's cool!"

As you can see from my pic, despite my CONSTANT nagging, getting her to stay in an upright position when not in the gym is a never ending battle. I think she spends more time on her hands then on her feet. So ever since the class she took, all she has been doing, is doing her walkovers, and cartwheels and handstands and handsprings over and over again and showing me how straight her legs are and how she's pointing her toes. lol. And I totally agree with previous posts on here about not doing things at home, but the only way I think I could prevent it would be to duck tape her to a chair! :eek:

She has tried the lunge to a handstand on their low beam and can hold it for a few seconds before coming back down onto the beam..... but again your right about form cause her biggest thing with handstands right now is remembering to keep her toes pointed and to lift her whole body up more (do you know what I mean? lol) Her balance is pretty good. She's a bit tiny for her age so ever since she started cheer the coaches at her cheer gym having been throwing her up in the air and having her balance or stunt in their one hand.

Yes, she can definitely pull herself up and over the bar from hanging straight underneath it. So that's good? It took about 3 or 4 times of the coach helping her and she was doing it on her own, over and over until they threw her out for the night.

But thanks again for your posts....I really appreciate it! Anything else you think I should know please feel free lol... Everyone here seems so helpfuL!
Aug 27, 2006
Hi and Welcome!! She sounds very talented and driven. Somethings she could do
at home pretty safely would be handstands against the wall and lots of conditioning for the arms and core strength which helps with the other events. The stronger you are the easier the skills are to learn. I cant wait to hear how she does


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Jan 4, 2008
Hi NewGymMum what is meant by a long hang pullover is a pullover on the high bar. There are lots of ways to do a pullover and first the girls learn it on the low bar but doing it on the high bar is the one that takes enoumous strength.

By the sounds of it her skills are quite high if she is already doing the handspring vault, handstand held for 2-3 seconds on the beam and working back handsprings and back walkovers on the beam. I do beleive that she would do best to start at around level 4.

Bars tends to be the one to hold them back, her bars skills are around level 2. But if she has picked those up quickly she may do the same for the level 3/4 skills.
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