Parental introduction

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Hello all,

I'm the father of a very dedicated 8 yr old gymnast that seems to have caught the eye of our clubs coaches.

Nastia (Anastasia), has been doing recreational gymnastics since she was 4, but has recently joined the the ranks of competition level athletes.

To be honest, I wasn't too involved at first as it seems many girls join gymnastics at a young age only to loose interest when the fun of boucing around the gym floor turns into work. I guess I always figured Nastia would take the same course. Well,I was wrong. Now that she has competed in local competitions, she's even more excited now to keep moving forward and take on new challenges. With an AA avg of 35.5, her coaches believe she may have 'that special spark' that could very well blossom into something bigger.

This is where I come in. I know precious little about the sport. No more than any young athletes parent I would imagine. I'm trying to read as much as I can about the topic, talk with other parents, and basically support Nastia's ambitions as much as possible without stepping over that fine-line between "Being a supportive parent" and "being an over-demanding" or even obsessive. (we have a few of "those" types in our club). My understand is that a parents behaviour could be devastating to a young gymnasts enthusiasm. I am admittingly somewhat demanding in that my kids do their best. I have a motto: If your going to do something - anything - do it properly or don't do it at all. Now, I don't care about winning although it's nice to see Nastia's shining face when she does. What I do care about that she does things to the best of her abilities.

For now, my help has been limited to that of encouragement, and building self-esteem, and of course paying for it all. But I feel I can do more without over-stepping. And with the help of forums like this, I feel I can establish at least set of goals for MYSELF to help Nastia. I just don't know where to start.

This is my introduction. I will no doubt post some very basic and uneducated questions in the main forum. Please be kind.



Moderator/Proud Parent
Aug 25, 2007
North Carolina
Welcome to CB Tim-Dad,

I think you will find you can ask anything here and not risk being made fun of. What a great group of parents, coaches and gymnasts there are here at the CB. I have found the level of support and understanding to be incredible.

Not everyone can understand the time and commitment that it takes for our little gymmies. Lots of people think it is our doing, if they could only sit in the gym for one practice they would see the light !!

My DD is 8. She has 2 level 3 meets left this season. Once it is over she will move to level 4. So far her top AA score was a 36.675. She has been competing for about a year, last year was a bit of a test. This year she has completely come out of her shell and decided that she LOVES to perform and it shows.

Best of luck in your journey. Don't be shy w/ questions. We are all newbie's once !!:cool:


Proud Parent
Jul 11, 2008
Welcome Tim,

I'm another gym dad, and I even though I don't post much here, I just thought your post deserved an answer. My dd is 16, and will do 1 L9 meet to start the season this December and then move to 10. (she has already done 2 seasons at 9). This will be her 10th year of competion, so I feel that I can speak to you as one with experience. Here are some thoughts that I would pass on to you (and to all new parents of competative gymnasts).

1. No matter how interested, fascinated, invloved you may become with this sport always always remember that it is her sport, not yours. You must let her progress and learn as she wants to and is able to, and trust her coaches to do their best and leave the coaching to them. After all, that is what you are paying them for.

2. Remember that as a sport, gymnastics is a marathon, not a sprint. In this sport, many will start; few will finish, and like the tortise and the hare, it is not always the litte superstars who race through the early Levels who are there at the end, but rather it is the ones who have a true love of the sport, and who have the determination to stay with it through pain and injury and disappointment, but who still come back the next day for practice. From my dd's original L5 team of 14, there is now her and 1 other. All the rest have quit, moved to cheer or hs gym or some other sport. (or a boy came into their life.)

3. Do not expect your dd to be an olympian. Support her and praise her for what she is and can be. If you want her to stay with it, do not set a level of unreasonable expectations that she cannot achieve. Many of the ones that I have seen leave have done so because their parents pushed them beyond what they could do or wanted to do.

4. If your gym has a booster club, join now. Its is great way to be part of her sport and to support and promote the gym as well. You will get to know a lot of the other parents and you will find that working with them on common projects can be very rewarding and a lot of fun.

5. Bring your checkbook. If you think its expensive now, just wait. The higher she goes, the more it will cost which is another reason to join the boosters. That can really help with the expenses which brings me to my last point which is:

6. Good Luck to your dd and to you and welcome to our world.

Feb 26, 2007
Hey Tim,

Welcome to the Chalkbucket, we have lots of Mums, Dad's, coaches and gymnasts here. Any question you ask will get answered by someone. We all began somewhere and this is a great place to begin.

Glad to hear you and your little girls are enjoying your gym journey!


Hi Tim_Dad!

Sounds like Nastia really loves the sport and is quite good! I have four girls in the gym and yes my gym bill is not that pretty LOL.:eek: DD1 is 9 years old and level 7, DD2 is 7 years old and level 5\6, DD3 is five years old and a level 4 (waiting until next year when she turns five to compete:() and DD4 is 3 years old and in an advanced pre-school program.

Nice to meet you, and welcome to CB!
Mar 5, 2008
North America
Welcome! You will find a lot of info and supportive parents here! We are new to gymnastics this year--Danica is 9 yrs old, Level 4 and has done all-star cheer for the previous 3 years. So far she loves gymanstics!!! We learned from cheer that drama, over-bearing parents and stressful practices do not lead to happy lil athletes. We switched to gymnastics so that she could get a good solid foundation with skills and move at her own pace. So far she is learning a lot, gaining competitive experience and most of all having fun and believing in herself!!!

Good luck to you and Nastia!
Nov 5, 2007
Welcome,I have a 10 year old daughter that is training for Level 9 and Pre Elite.The Chalkbucket is a nice place to come to.
Oct 2, 2008
South Carolina
Welcome Tim - It is great to have you! Can't wait to hear more about your DD. Make sure and post pictures in an Album and Video on youtube when you can. We all love stuff like that!

My DD is competing level 4 and just turned 6.


Hello Tim and welcome to CB! Can't wait to hear more about your dd and her progress. Like Juju's Mom said we love pics, and vids around her! As far as questions.....ask away! There are lots of coaches and informed, experienced parents willing to offer suggestions. Careful though, this message board could become addictive! I check it atleast a couple times every day!......(what have I become!):D

I have 2 dds. My oldest is 5 years old and finishing her level 3 season. And I have a 4 year old in an advance rec class, anxioulsy waiting to join team.


Welcome Tim Dad,

oh, and great post Gymdad2. Nice to see more dads turning up here.

gym law mom

Proud Parent
Dec 23, 2006
Hi Tim. Welcome to the CB---see you already have started posting!! Nice to have more dads getting on here. My gymmie is 12 and competing L8.

Have a question about gymnastics or anything related, ask away. Great group of parents, gymnasts, coaches and a few judges to answer questions, give advice and "have been there---done it."


Hello, and welcome to the chalk bucket....
i am a gymnast not mom or dad or coach but i can tell you some advise...
I am 11 and a level 7-8 gymnast my goal is to get a scholar ship to UGA in gymnastics.... now to you... umm sounds like Nastia is very deticated to this sport. Thats good!! Well good luck... fell free to ask me anything else....
Georgia Gym Dogs #1;)
Jan 17, 2008
Welcome to the CB! I know I am a little late to welcome you!

Your little gymmmie sounds like she loves the sport and kudos to you for wanting to know how to support her without pushing her.

My DD is 13 and competing L8 this year!

Good luck!
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