For Parents New Here - Not on Team Yet (Long)

Parents... Coaches... Judges... Gymnasts...
DON'T LURK... Join The Discussion!

Members See FEWER Ads!
Join for FREE!
Not open for further replies.
I just checked all of our rates. Our rec girls pay about $22/hour, but they only go once a week. My DD is Level 3, training 10 hours/week, and we're paying $30/hour. She will most likely get moved up in December, at which time she'll be training just under 15 hours a week. Our monthly price will go up, but our hourly price will drop to about $22/hour. By the time they get to the highest optional levels, they're only paying $17/hour, but they're there 23 hours/week.

Unless I am missing something, $30 an hour for 10 hours a week comes out to about $1,200 a month!! That sounds outrageous!
I am guessing they did what i did initially. in my sleep deprived state, I wasn't thinking and used the hours per week, but tuition per month. We pay just under $7/hr for my son. When I first calculated it (again..sleep-deprived!) it came out at almost 30! I was ready to faint!!!
Txgymfan has some great advice. It is important to get an idea of what options are available in your area and how they approach team. For instance, I know a gym (known for great results with a small team) where it is common for almost all the team gymnasts to have regular privates with the coach. This is to the tune of $50 per private, so team gymnasts are paying on average an extra $200month on top of regular tuition. I do not know of any other gyms where this is the norm. However, for parents with no exposure to other gyms, they may think this is just the way it is done in gymnastics.
Every gym is different regarding who and how they accept gymnasts to team as well as their team philosophy.
I just checked all of our rates. Our rec girls pay about $22/hour, but they only go once a week. My DD is Level 3, training 10 hours/week, and we're paying $30/hour. She will most likely get moved up in December, at which time she'll be training just under 15 hours a week. Our monthly price will go up, but our hourly price will drop to about $22/hour. By the time they get to the highest optional levels, they're only paying $17/hour, but they're there 23 hours/week.

Is $30 an hour $1200 per month?!?! I can't imagine!! ($30 an hour x 40 hours per month). We are paying $7 an hour- $265 a month for 38 hours a month...of course there are also all of the other fees that accompany team on top of that.
My DD went from 1 hour 1x per week to 1.5 hours 1x per week to 2 hours 2x per week then finally 3 hours 3x per week shortly after her 6th birthday. I was concerned with the increase in hours each time she "moved up" but she always did just fine. Of course she is a 3rd child so she doesn't realize that she's only six as she has been trying to keep up with her older siblings since she was born!

Another thing to think about as you investigate is a topic that comes up here on CB periodically and that's the gyms philosophy on parent viewing once your DD makes team. Some gyms request that team parents do NOT stay for practice, just drop them at the door and leave. Some gyms request it but aren't super strict on enforcing it while others are more strict about it. Our gym asks team parents not to stay, particularly during peak rec. hours when viewing and parking space are tight but they don't mind the occasional viewing. Gyms make most of their money from their rec program so they don't want us team parents taking spaces away from rec parents for 3+ hours at a time. Most team parents agree that we don't particularly want to stay at the gym for 9+ hours a week but I certainly do want to be able to visit and observe from time to time without it causing a big problem. My DD is 6 years old too and even though she is a very disciplined and well behaved child, with her being so young I like to be able to peek in from time to time to observe her behaviors and interactions from a parents point of view.

Thankfully we are a part of a WONDERFUL and well respected gym that has been around for 30 years under the same ownership and it seems that with 30 years experience under their belt they have learned how to run a very balanced program that, for the most part, works well for the children, the parents and the coaches
Guess we're getting a deal (don't tell our HC/owner that)--pay about $5.80/hr for level 10 hours. It's gone up every year, so I'm not feeling like it's a deal LOL!
  • Like
Reactions: Mellow Yellow
Well, goodness. I sure didn't mean to open a giant can of worms with regards to money! It is fascinating to see all of the variation, though.

Oh, and I did find out through their website that he is one of the women's team coaches, and he has 23 years of experience. It sounds like he can answer all of my questions.
Yes, yes, yes to txgymmom's advice! I've had my dd at the same gym since she was 3 yrs old. It did not occur to me to even look at other gyms until she was almost on team. And I kept assuming she had to be 6 years old to be on pre-team or team at all at ANY gym, and well, I've learned a lot through CB. Another issue with our current gym is they did not make the cost clear up front. We were only told about tuition, and the other costs: coaches' fees, meet registration, Leo, warmup suit, gym bag etc. all kind of hit us last minute. We briefly considered letting DD do competitive cheer, and I appreciate how that gym had an informational packet for new parents with all costs and fees broken down throughout the year.
I need to make a little correction.. we pay $300/month for my older daughter, not $350. Oops. So it works out to $5/hour for 15 hours/week. Thankfully, it doesn't go up much from there. An optional practicing 20 hours pays $355. We went pretty quickly from 3 to 6 to 9 and then jumped to 15.. so at least it won't get much more expensive tuition-wise (of course when she's an optional we'll be traveling more, we will need to pay for choreography, etc).
Is $30 an hour $1200 per month?!?! I can't imagine!! ($30 an hour x 40 hours per month). We are paying $7 an hour- $265 a month for 38 hours a month...of course there are also all of the other fees that accompany team on top of that.

Oh my gosh, no! My stellar math skills strike once again! LOL I was dividing the monthly by the hours for ONE week, not the whole month! LOL!!! OK so correction......We currently pay $7.5/hour for 10 hours per week. Once she moves up, we'll be paying $5.85/hour for just shy of 15 hours/week. Sorry about the confusion!
It is possible the coach wants to work with her directly to better assess how she takes direction and applies corrections as well as to work on specific skills. I think he could tell you more about his specific goals and how quickly he would expect to see results so you can gauge if it's worth the cost and if she seems to be following the timeline.

As for the expense of team, when you are clarifying details also ask about a booster club. If your gym has fundraising opportunities it can really cut down on expenses and make it more affordable. You can also ask how much you stand to save by actively participating if that's an option at your gym.
  • Like
Reactions: Mellow Yellow
Joining late into the discussion, but since I also recently went through the process of getting on the team, I wanted to add my 2 cents.
You got some great advises here. Yes, you need find our the costs first, and make sure that you can afford this sport.
But if you do decide to move ahead with it, privates might be a good idea. You said at the beginning that people here are against privates. That's not always true. The thread you were probably referring to was about a 3 year old, and that's a bit early for privates. In your case, believe it or not, some gyms would already consider your DD being on the older side. My DD was 8 last spring, when they told me she was too old to join their team. They said they usually have kids starting on pre-team at the age of 4-5. We found another gym, where DD got on the team, but if your gym is like our old gym, the coach probably feels that if your DD is to join the pre-team, she needs to progress as quickly as possible, while she is still in the right age group. And yes, I think they are talking about pre-team, not team right away, but that's something you should also verify. In our new gym the pre-team is more like an advanced 2-hour class ones a week, and then they move straight on to the level 1 team. The old gym had pre-team (8 hours a week), and then team starting at level 3.
Good luck with whatever you decide!
  • Like
Reactions: Mellow Yellow
I second the vote to ask for clarification before you do anything else. So many of the things you need know are specific to your gym....and the answers would completely dictate the direction for me. (how long, for what purpose, etc.)
One more thing about the money involved......our gym posts the team hours and monthly cost on their website, so I was aware of that going in. However, if anyone would have told me the additional costs involved prior to us being in the middle of all of it, we probably would have decided we couldn't afford it. But we always seem to work it out somehow. So, although it is an expensive sport, "where there is a will, there is a way" might apply.
  • Like
Reactions: Mellow Yellow
I oscillate about if it's worth it. Sometimes I get SO frustrated with this sport/our gym/my child/the meets. But I also love it. It wouldn't have been my first choice for my child's dreams, but I wasn't really consulted. LOL

You will meet (hopefully) some amazing parents in your journey. They will become your friends and confidants and the shoulder you lean on when your child falls off the beam TWICE and earns a 6.something. They will be the ones who can give your kid a ride to/from gym in a pinch. They will keep you sane during a bad meet.

Your child may spend many hours in the gym and when they become teenagers, that will be a good thing. Less time to experiments with alcohol, drugs, tobacco, and sex. Yes, they will miss things but the trade off can't be compared.

You will experience the frustration of watching your child spend months trying to learn a new skill (mine will NEVER learn a back extension on beam, I'm convinced) and then the joy of watching them finally hit that trick! And the satisfaction of then watching them cleanly compete that skill.

You will learn to be in awe of your child's bravery, mental toughness, stubborness, and ability to withstand pain. You will hurt when they hurt while knowing that there is no way in HELL you would climb back onto that beam after taking the tumble they just did. And will be in awe.

You might stress out about leo colors, hair styles, dismounts, scores, judges, placement, move ups, coach attention, etc. But those are minor blips in an otherwise amazing journey.
UPDATE: we had class today, so I asked her Tuesday coach about what had happened and if she had ever heard of that before. She immediately passed me off to someone in the office who seemed VERY surprised that he would promise team to us. She took my number and promised to call me after she had spoken to the office manager. I really don't want that coach to get in trouble, but I do want to get to the bottom of this in order to know whether or not we should invest in private lessons. If she has absolutely no chance for team, then we're going to stay with rec and forget private lessons altogether. Here are a few things this lady said worth mentioning:

1) Girls in the preteam class are 4-5 years old and are hand-picked by one coach. They come directly out of the preschool rec classes. She mentioned having that coach take a look at my DD to give me an opinion on whether or not she shows promise, but the overall impression I got was that it was not likely for her to get in the preteam class, and that seems to be the ONLY way to move to team.

2) She had NEVER heard of a coach promising team to anyone and found it hard to believe that he would do that.

This sure makes me wonder if he's just trying to take our money. I watched my DD closely in class today, and she doesn't stand out from the other girls as being exceptional. In fact, looking back on it, the only thing he told me about why he thought she could make it was that she is short and strong, and "short is good for gymnastics."

So, I'm pretty bummed, I have to say. I NEVER expected that she would make this team since it is so competitive, so when he said that it sure got my hopes up for her. She just loves gymnastics.

I looked at other gyms in our area, and the rec prices all seem to be close to this gym. I haven't called for an eval anywhere else yet, because I want to get to the bottom of this situation first. I mean, it's possible that he just really believes she can do it, but I don't want to put all of my eggs in that basket anymore.

We've had free trials, summer camps, birthday parties, or have taken classes at most of the places around, and nothing seems to compare to the kind of instruction or environment she's in now. But that isn't even the biggest reason I want to stay where we are. My oldest son takes rec classes, too, and he LOVES it. I can't find another gym around with a boy's program. If I switch gyms for her, then I'll have it drive to two gyms in order to keep them both happy. Yuck.

Anyway! I sure appreciate all of the advice from all of you. I'm still going to take her on Saturday, and hopefully I'll be able to sit down with this man and get some answers. I don't like being taken for a ride, so he'll need to explain exactly why he believes in her and HOW she can make team if it is so exclusive there.

Team may not be in her future at this place. I can come to terms with that pretty easily, but I hope that she doesn't miss the window for team at another gym if that is where her heart lies.
Not open for further replies.