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Geoffrey Taucer

Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Jan 21, 2007
4,682
Baltimore, MD
The other day I came up with a workout game that can be used on all events. Each basic or routine skill is worth a certain number of points (which you only get for clean execution), and each upgrade skill costs a certain number of points. Basic skills also have bonuses for specific performance criteria. So for example, on level 4 beam I had something like this:

BASIC/ROUTINE:

Handstand: 1 pt
+2 if held for 2 seconds
+2 if split clearly shown on top before stepping down

Cartwheel: 1 pt
+2 for no wobbles

(etc)


UPGRADES (these refer to progressions; the specific drill or step in the progression depends on the athlete):
Back walkover: -3 pts

Back handspring: -4 pts

(etc) It was extremely effective at getting the kids excited about both their skills and their upgrades, but it was also extremely chaotic, and I always had 8 kids or more trying to show me a skill at any given time.

So let's brainstorm. How can this game be refined? How can it be made less chaotic and more structured, while retaining 1) The athlete's ability to choose which skill to focus on, and 2) The gamification that makes it exciting for them?
 
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If you have an injured athlete, have them be a help coach. If you don’t, maybe pair the gymnasts up with each other, and let the non-performing give out points to the performer?

Obviously, you have to make the expectations clear from the start, but I love having athletes help and ‘coach’ each other.
 
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I have a few questions @Geoffrey Taucer:
  • Why do upgrades get negative points?
  • Each gymnast plays the game by performing a routine? Or are they allowed to show individual skills?
  • What denotes the end of the game and the winner? Are there rounds to the game?
I'm also thinking if there is a team aspect added to this, it will get even more competitive. Perhaps have pairs of athletes perform the routine back to back, and if they both hit above a certain point total they get a point bonus or multiplier (I'm clearly pulling from video games :p ). Letting the teams pick their own names is always a blast too; you'll get some really idiotic names, believe me.
 
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I have a few questions @Geoffrey Taucer:
  • Why do upgrades get negative points?
  • Each gymnast plays the game by performing a routine? Or are they allowed to show individual skills?
  • What denotes the end of the game and the winner? Are there rounds to the game?
I'm also thinking if there is a team aspect added to this, it will get even more competitive. Perhaps have pairs of athletes perform the routine back to back, and if they both hit above a certain point total they get a point bonus or multiplier (I'm clearly pulling from video games :p ). Letting the teams pick their own names is always a blast too; you'll get some really idiotic names, believe me.

So the idea is that you earn points by doing clean basics, and then the reward is that you get to spend those points to be allowed to do upgrades. When I've used this game, it's been on days when routines were a low priority (ie when the next meet is still a ways out), and we've just focused on skills. Should be easy enough to modify it to include routines, though.
 
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