Too old to compete?

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Jul 23, 2009
Hi, so I started gymnastics last month. I am progressing extremely fast. I am as good as the other girls in my class who have been there for atleast one year. I was in gymnastics from age 3-7 and I somehow kept my flexibility and a lot of skills. I know that I'll have the necessary skills to be on team and compete next year. The only problem is that I'll be 16 in February. I'm a perfectionist and the kind of person who loves competition. I don't know if i'm wasting my time hoping to get on team if I'm too old...?


i dnt think there is an age limit for competitive gymnastics. what they might do is hav u do 1 level 4, 1 level 5, then 1 level 6 if u hav all the skills then make u an optinal gymnast. that is if u score out. but if u want to do well in gymnastics go for it.


Jun 24, 2008
You would have to talk to people at your gym to get a definitive answer. USAG does not have an age limit (I'm competing a few meets L9 next year after graduating from college), but some gyms have an unofficial age limit for starting team.
Apr 3, 2009
woah thats almost like me! except i just started gymnastics when i was 13 and now i'm 14. i am on x4, or level 3 and i am a perfectionist that loves competition too. I really want to compete and i have most of my skills and i really don't want to be on a team with younger kids anymore.


May 4, 2009
Wow! I think that is great that you started again! I am 26 and I started trampoline and tumbling not too long ago and now have been invited to join team which I accepted and start on Friday. I talked to my coach about it and she tells me there are a lot of adults in T&T and that I will be in my own age catagory competing with adults. The only problem I can see for you is you might be competing with little kids depedning on what program your gym does. And it is totally up to you if you would feel alright with that or not. Also like others have said talk to your coach first to see if it is an option, they may not have an age group for you, or they may not allow older people to compete. Good luck!
Sep 19, 2008
I support everyone who wants to start competing, no matter what age, but you should check with your gym if they have an internal age limit. Also, does your gym only do USAG?`Because if you haven't reached your L7 skills yet, maybe it'd be more fun to do Prep Opt or something similar? Competing compulsories with mostly young kids could feel slightly awkward...


May 28, 2009
Region I
If you do choose to compete USAG compulsories, you will be in the minority, but you won't be the only teenager.

At my gym, we had girls as old as 14 competing level 4, and as old as 16 competing level 6. We try to push the older ones to Level 7 or at least prep-op so they can do their own routines, but if they love it and don't mind being a little older, we don't stop them. :)


I think its great that you back to the sport. If your goal is to be on team then I would talk with your coach (and parents) and let them know what you would like to do and together come up with a plan. If you have the skills they could do a petition to have you start at a higher level without doing the lower ones first. Talking to your coach and coming up with a plan I think is your best bet at this point.

Good luck
Jul 23, 2009
First of all, thanks for all the replies.
We do have a pre-opt. There are a couple of 14 year olds I think, and theyre level 6.
This is reassuring for me :]
I will talk to the gym's main coach about it.
We had a driving age young "adult" on our L4 team this past season. Very good kid. She is just as happy as ever and loves to be around the little much younger peers in practices and in competitions.

Yes, you're a late comer to this competitive sport. But, there isn't anything you can do about it now. Feeling too old to compete is only in your own mind -- assuming your gym welcomes anyone to start at any age. For the love of the sport, just go for it. Best of luck to you.


You should go for it! There are many gymnasts that still compete into their 20's and 30's even at the olympic level. It seem to me that some of these gymnasts that start very young often get burned out or suffer from injuries. At 16, you are more able to understand and focus on what is required, and you probably have more drive and detemination to succeed. Don't worry about being with younger kids at the same level. Just work on your skills-compete against yourself and don't let others influence your dreams.
Feb 3, 2009
I retired from gymnastics at age 16. After I was married and had my son, when he was two years old I decided to do gymnastics again to get back into shape. I was 22 then. At age 34 I became State Champion on balance beam, vault and floor exercise, won third place on bars and won Silver All-Around missing Gold by .05! I competed at Level 8 in the USAG Junior Olympic Program in the 16 years old and up Division.
If you have the passion, the desire to be the best you can be, age is no limit. The Senior Olympics does not even have gymnastics in it! I wish it did. You must be 50 years old to compete in the Senior Olympics. I'm now 49 and desire to compete once again but this sport makes it very difficult, unfortunately, for adult gymnasts to succeed and follow their dreams. It's not just a little girl's sport!
My advice is, if you love gymnastics, don't let anyone stop you from doing it. I wish the best for every gymnast that has a dream and is willing to go for it, no matter what! :)
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