WAG Shameless brag and annoying Texas question!! Opinions needed and very welcome!

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Proud Parent
Mar 1, 2011
My daughter, who is 7,competed Xcel Gold (in our part of region 8 Xcel is just as competitive, if notmore so than compulsory). I believe thisis equivalent to Level 5. She startedoff the year scoring in the low 35’s but by the end of the season, at her last3 or 4 meets, she was scoring in the mid 37’s. She made incredible progress throughout the year and was often times theyoungest in the entire Gold level at meets. The beginning birthday for the Gold level at the Regional meet actuallyfell on her birthday. At Regionals, sheactually won bars. Her gym is hoping hergroup will score out of the old level 6 sometime this summer before the newroutines are required. This summer shewill be training level 7 skills with the possibility of competing the new level6 or even level 7 (although that seems to be a far reaching goal) this comingwinter. I am super proud of her, as shehas battled some fear for the first time this year. Just thinking back to where she was a yearago compared to where she is now seems incredible!! Now onto my annoying Texas question. It appears that my husband’s job will berelocating us to the Dallas/Ft.Worth area. Although my husband willhave to move almost immediately, my daughter and I will stay home until ourhouse sells. I have searched andsearched the Internet and have done a good deal of research on not only placesto live, but also gyms in the DFW area. We will more than likely end up in the Grapevine/Flower Mound/Coppellarea; however, there is a possibility we could end up in the Planoor Richardsonarea. DFW area has entirely too many choices And, I can only do so much research on gyms inthe area online. I think so much of choosinga gym actually comes from being in the gym, meeting the kids, parents and coaches,just being there and getting a feel for the gym in general. That being said, I would love some personalexperience and information from my fellow chalk buckets users. Whenever I mention the names of gyms in theDFW area to parents here, I am always answered with terrible things they haveheard here, there and yonder haha! So Iwould love actual experience and/or knowledge. I do not expect my daughter to go to the Olympics; however, I do knowshe has true natural talent and a genuine love for the sport that consumes her days. Although not important now, I would like to be at a gym that she could go the elite route if she so chooses without having to change gyms again. Moving and this change of gyms is going to break her heart. She has been at this same gym since she startedat age 3. It’s between a small andmedium size gym so she knows all the gymnasts from the lower and upper levels. It’s a true family and I really would like to pick the “right” gym in Dallas so that she can establish the same type of relationships there and does not have to change gyms again. Where we are now has established themselves as a great gym in our area and consistently sends girls to college on scholarships. The owners have stated they don’t really have the desire to coach elite due to the time it takes-they love coaching girls to get to the college level though. So, my daughter does come from agym with a very good coaching background. She does not do well with the “task master” kind of coaching. Instead, she flourishes with positive coaching and praise where she can still have fun and enjoy this sport she loves so much. After all, she is still only 7. If helpful, we will be either homeschooling or looking into alternative half dayschooling options. I would love any information, opinions, and/or experiences anyone can offer about any gyms in the DFW area. And, are there any that we should definitely stay away from? Wow, I did not expectthis post to be so long. My apologies and if you have made it this far, my thanks!
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I live in Texas, but not in the DFW area, so I can't offer you personal experience, but definitely check out WOGA and Texas Dreams. WOGA is a very established (is that the right word?) gym, and Kennedy Baker lives in Flower Mound and trains at Texas Dreams.
As for schooling options, check out Spring Creek Academy. The WOGA girls go theirs and its supposed to be very flexible.
We have some friends whose daughter goes to U.S. Gold Gymnastics in Roanoke, and does very well. Roanoke is right down Highway 114 from Grapevine. Of course the infamous WOGA is in the Plano/Frisco area. I have to say, I'm a bit jealous. We love the area of Houston we are in, but we used to live in Ft. Worth, and absolutely loved it there as well, and miss it so much. Just try to ignore the heat if you move there in the next few months. LOL Personally, I much prefer Tarrant County to Dallas and Collin Counties. As mentioned before, Texas Dreams is in Coppell, which is very close to Grapevine. Sorry I don't have more information on gyms there, other than our friends' gym. My daughter was just a baby when we moved away from there, so we weren't in the gymnastics world yet.
I lived in Richardson for about 5 years a lot of my family still lives there. Great suburb. I prefer it to Plano, which, in my opinion, lacks personality. ;)

You're spoiled for choice in the DFW area. If elite gyms are what you want, DFW has those aplenty, but keep in mind they may be very selective and will probably "track" the girls quite early. I second the suggestion to PM dunno, as he can probably give you more info about the coaching style at the places you're looking at.
Thank you to everyone for your replies. I really appreciate the insight. Looks like I will be contacting dunno and doing a little more research. I'm very excited about going to Dallas, although I have lived in my hometown all of my life so I'm a little anxious as well. The Dallas area is so large, I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed!!
A large city isn't as large as you think it is. Your version of the area will be limited to the people and places you go on a regular basis and the amount of those places isn't that different if you live in a big or a small city. You will make friends and acquaintances at the gym, your work, the kids schools and possibly your place of worship. I live in Houston, the 4th largest city in the country but I still recognize the clerk at my bank because I go every month at the same time. You will get to know people and then the big city will feel so much smaller.
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A large city isn't as large as you think it is. Your version of the area will be limited to the people and places you go on a regular basis and the amount of those places isn't that different if you live in a big or a small city. You will make friends and acquaintances at the gym, your work, the kids schools and possibly your place of worship. I live in Houston, the 4th largest city in the country but I still recognize the clerk at my bank because I go every month at the same time. You will get to know people and then the big city will feel so much smaller.

This is so true. That's the beauty of big cities. You have your community you live in, but you also have access to all the big city stuff, like the arts, great museums, great restaurants, etc. I also live in Houston, but trust me when I say....my suburb very much has a small town feel to it....almost too much at times. LOL

If you're thinking you may end up living in the Grapevine/Flower Mound area, and the thought of such a large city freaks you out a little bit, you should look in the Roanoke/Trophy Club area. They used to be pretty rural until the builders started developing it. That is the area we used to live in. We left there almost 10 years ago, so I know it has probably changed a lot since then, but it would be worth a look. I loved it. Close to the city, but still sort of had the feel of being out in the country. If you decide to go more in the Plano direction, just keep on going north of there up to Allen and north. It isn't as filled in yet. Just pay attention to the roads your husband will have to drive on to get to work. Some of those highways can turn into a parking lot during rush hour, especially on the Dallas County side.
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Another Suburban Houstonian here- but I lived in Grapevine about twelve years ago. As a previous poster said D/FW is very similar to Houston in that your community can be as big or as little as you want it to be based on your interactions and every day life. Any chance you can take a trip to visit and check out the feel for some of the gyms as part of the house hunting process?
She does not do well with the “task masterâ€￾ kind of coaching.

From yourdictionary.com: The definition of a taskmaster is someone who makes others work very hard and stay on track in doing the work. (noun)

I would stay away from the big name gyms then.
I think just the sheer number of suburb options in the area is what has me overwhelmed. Like choosing a gym, I just don't want to make the wrong choice. My husband will be moving before us so he will have the opportunity to explore the area and then I hope to make at least 2 trips to house and gym hunt. I know it will all be ok, its just in the meantime I'm going a little nuts over all the choices haha!! I do know that every coach has to keep the gymnasts working hard and on track. My daugther is a hard worker; however, she has one coach that is pretty tough, that puts a lot of pressure on the girls, has very high expectations (my way or the highway type) and tends to coach more in a negative way. To be honest, my daugther is a little afraid of her :) I don't mean that she needs a coach that just lets her have fun all the time or doesn't expect a lot or make her work hard, but just someone who is a little softer around the edges; someone that will still hug her, joke around with her and give her positive praise and reinforcement, not an all the time negative style of coaching. Hope that I explained that a little better this time!!
One thing to keep in mind is the compulsory "season" for TX starts in late August and ends in December. Depending on when you move, there season could be well underway which might cause a delay for getting into a competitive program. TX has a program called TAAF which is similar to Xcel so you may want to find a gym that also has that. The big name gyms in the Dallas metro area are just tough---no way to sugar coat it. They are selective since they get so many kids pounding on their doors. TX is very very competitive so expect for a significant increase in practice hours/tuition no matter where you go.
We live in the DFW area, near Keller/Roanoke. Feel free to PM me if you want info on the area. I really like the metroplex but living close to Keller it is very quiet and a little slower paced. A lot of our friends do a home/private school program where they go to the school 2-3 days a week and homeschool the other days. They really like it and if I didn't have to work full time, I would definately consider it for my girls.
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