Rise in enrollment after Summer Olympics?

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Mar 5, 2008
North America
This question is for the coaches, owners and parents. Just curious as to if there is a significant rise in gymnastics programs right after a summer olympics? I would assume that the gyms would be flooded with kids wanting to be the "next Mary Lou, Nadia or Nastia", just to name a few.

Also, I am curious as to what intentions parents have for their kids. Is it just to have fun and get some exercise, or do some parents enter their kids in gymnastics because they want them to be an olympian?

I know those are two polar opposite extremes and there are proabably hundreds of scenarios in between, so I am just curious as to where most people fall on that gymnastics spectrum.


Proud Parent
Feb 19, 2007
Having a 13 year old DD, MY goals for her w/gymnastics are for her to have fun, be involved in a sport to keep in shape, but most important to keep her busy w/a good group of girls. These teen years can be sooo tough on a kid. Lots of temptations (not always good ones) and not always the best influences. I figure the busier she is, the less chance she has of getting intio trouble!!!


I coach at a YMCA, and I'd say our enrollment doesn't increase that much for fall, as enrollment is pretty much all decided before the Olympics start. But winter-oh boy! Some of it is because of the Olympics, but the biggest factor is New Year's. Parents make resolutions, and then have to have somewhere to go with their kids while they work out. And if you have to do something, why not go swing on a bar and jump on a trampoline?
Mar 5, 2008
North America
I'm probably somewhere in the middle of the spectrum. I want my dd to be active and healthy physically and to also be involved in a sport that takes dedication, determination, a good work ethic and teamwork. I also, like Tumblequeensmom, want her to be busy with a good group of girls. My dd is not a teen yet but she has definitely hit those "tween" years that give me a taste for what is to come!

I also like gymnastics as a sport because you don't have to be at "the elite level" to learn those vaulable lessons of working through challenges and overcoming fears, knowing what it is like to work hard and achieve, and to know that each day is new and if you first don't succeed, try, try again. Although my dd just started gymnastics and is at a level 4, she is being tested everyday that she is in the gym.

As for my expectations for her--I want her to have fun, put forth her best effort, and to be the best gymnast she can be. Her expectations may be different and that will be her main driving force as to where and how far she takes her gymnastics.


Moderator/Proud Parent
Aug 25, 2007
North Carolina
I signed up DD because she was always moving, always climbing things (ANYTHING !! - bunk beds without a ladder, I would find her on the kitchen counter - not having used a chair - climbing the chain link backstop at DS's baseball games.............) and swinging off things. I wanted to provide her with a safe outlet for all this energy.

I am pleased with the self confidence that it has given her. She has really come out of her shell. She is still self-conscious of herself at school - doesn't think she is as smart as the other kids etc. I wish her confidence at the gym would carry over. But - I will take it where I can get it at this point.

She has learned to be supportive of others, compassion (when someone is struggling or frustrated ) she has learned to teach ( helping others of her level that may not have a skill she already has) - demonstrates sometimes for kids in a rec class.

She has learned about working hard and being a part of a team.

I know that if she ever quits gymnastics she will have to get into something else that is time consuming because she always has to be busy and I would prefer she was in a sport or activity she loved than hanging out at the mall or getting into trouble (she is only 8 so I have time before I have to deal with that)

What I want is for her to be happy, have fun and stay healthy - In whatever she does whether it be gymnastics or another activity. I want her to be confident in who she is and in that she is an amazing girl.


For me, I made the decision on my own to start gym/tumbling. The main reason was just that I was starting to get bored with track and soccer and I wanted to try something new. Gym is a great sport for staying in shape, for challenging yourself physically and mentally, and for learning to help and support each other as a team. It has been an extremely positive experience, and I have met many hard working and dedicated people so far.

And I certainly can't complain about the guy/girl ratio either ;)


My parents put me in gym because I was really flexible, and my doctor told my parents that my flexibility wouldn't be lost for a long time. He suggested ballet or gymnastics.I refused dance, as my four year old self thought it too boring. My parents agreed to gymnastics. They had no idea what they were getting into! They thought it might be fun for me, and maybe I'd want to stop and try something else at some point and that would be OK with them. I became really passionate and quitting was never even something that came to mind after nearly 12 years of competing. It was the last few months, but I'm staying with it. My parents have been so supportive of me and have been willing to put up with my obsession. As for dance-most people think I've taken a zillion dance classes, but in truth I did a poms class at 7, and dance for gymnasts age 10-12. My parents never expected anything, but they are so pleased at what came out!


I started gymnastics after the Olympics. Most people I've met say the same thing... And actually I've seen interviews with elite gymnasts that say the same thing... "I wanted to be like the Mag Seven!" "I wanted to do the same things as Shannon Miller did!"


MY DD has been in gymnastics for a couple of years now, but her friend across the street has been coming over and borrowing my DD's old leos and begging her mom to sign her up for classes. She's been watching the Olympics and playing gymnastics with my DD so she's gotten really into gymnastics. I would think you may see a slight rise in enrollment, but who knows.
We signed our DD up for mommy and me when she was 2. she was doing forward rolls easily at home and jumping on all the furniture. i just thought it was a good way to get out energy. Now she's 5 and on L3. She has really big dreams (she wants to be a Georgia GymDog) we are just glad she has found a sport she loves/enjoys. We would support her to any level (10/elite) if it was her dream (her dream alone not parents) , but at the same time the pressure of Elite scares me to death. It would be a huge sacrifice on our family to train at really high levels.....fees, meet travel, time at gym, driving time, arranging school schedules, ..... on and on
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