For Parents My tall girl just made the team

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Proud Parent
May 26, 2022
My 6.5yo started a rec class at the beginning of the fall, and she recently got invited to the Xcel bronze team. Two separate coaches told me over the year that she has a lot of natural talent, which surprised me because she is at the 99.6th percentile for height. She’s 52 inches tall at 6.5 years and towers over everyone else in her kindergarten class. I don’t have a background in gymnastics, so my question is: how much truth is there in the idea that gymnastics is better suited for shorter girls. Is there a point at which her height will hold her back? I have no idea how long we will be on this gymnastics journey, and I don’t really care how well she competes as long as she is happy and having fun. I’m just curious if this is going to be a hugely uphill battle for her, given her height. Thanks!


Oct 13, 2020
Well, later on, some skills will be harder for her, and maybe that will frustrate her, but it's definitely possible for her to do anything she wants in gymnastics. Some skills come easier to taller gymnasts, or look nicer when they do them because of their height. Height can be a setback, but easy to overcome. My bet is that in optionals it will be easier because she can do skills that accomodate her height. She can still be successful in gymnastics. Marie-Sophie Hindermann, Kylie Dickson and Sophie Scheder are all very tall and they are Olympians!
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Feb 27, 2022
Height can make things harder, but the tiny gymnast stereotype is being defied more every year. Most importantly, you are fit, strong, and hardworking. Many more things make a gymnast than height. It will be a challenge sometimes. But she is still young. She could end up short and just be an early grower, depends on your height.

I've seen 5'10 level 10s. I don't think her height will ever completely stop her. Encourage her and enjoy this!


Proud Parent
Dec 22, 2016
From what I see the main disadvantage for height is bars but thats only really for FIG settings which are very rigid. If you aren't doing fig (like Olympics and international competition) you have greater flexibility in bar settings...and bar settings don't really matter until level 6 and up. Otherwise tall? Short? doesnt seem to matter.
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Jul 22, 2022
Everyone seems obsessed with much that our coach has a blurb on the team web page that states she works with girls of any height.

HOWEVER with that said, you will notice that Kylie Dickson competed for Belarus where competition is a bit less intense, not the USA....but she still went to Rio!!! She can sign her name 'Kylie Dickson, Oly' and there aren't too many that can do that!!

There is much said about my kid being a short little hobbit(your daughter would tower mine-and mine is almost 11, she still hasnt even made 4'....and JUST made 50#-it was such a struggle to get there, people often mistake her for 5-7yo, it drives her crazy!!).

Personally I love watching the taller girls at competitions, they're so gorgeous with pretty, flowy lines!! Almost like dancers to watch!!

To that end, if you daughter finds it too much of a struggle, she can always move to another sport, using the skills she learned in gym!! Dance, diving, just to name 2....but so many skills learned in gymnastics transcend a specific sport(the determination, hard work, self esteem, etc)

Yet, things change and you never oldest towered everyone in Kinder, she was expected by doctors to be close to 6'(her dad is 6'2", I am 5'7-1/2" & she was like your daughter and always in the 99th percentile when young)....then she played softball, had knee surgery at 14, quit growing & is now 5'2" at almost 22.

Like all thing, you need to think about what your goals are for the sport. If it is for your daughter to enjoy herself, have fun, be a part of a team, find an enjoyable passion, personal growth, increased balance, self esteem, etc....then you are in the right place and will likely get all that and more!! If your goal is for your daughter to be the next Simone Biles, with international recognition/fame, and nothing else will do....then you may be sorely disappointed and not enjoy the sport.
Jun 10, 2022
My daughter also tracks above the 99th centile for height.
There are many other factors to success or not in gymnastics - her height is unlikely to be the deciding factor on which path she takes.
Until coaching raises it as a barrier we don’t think about it
Although ‘tall’ is a relative term - whenever a tall gymnast is mentioned, it’s a significantly shorter height this 6ft mumma would consider as tall.
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Proud Parent
May 11, 2020
Not sure where I heard this quote, but I like it:
“Gymnastics isn’t easier when a gymnast is short….. spotting is.”
Ding ding! It’s a lot easier to spot a small short person than a tall person, especially if your coaches are female and likely short themselves
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Proud Parent
Mar 25, 2022
If being tall wasn’t a disadvantage you’d see more tall gymnasts. It’s not a coincidence that Simon Biles is shockingly short — even among other gymnasts.

That’s not to say that tall kids shouldn’t do gymnastics and can’t be good at it. Physical talent, love of training gymnastics, and injury luck trumps being short every time.
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