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Dad1234

Proud Parent
May 12, 2018
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I’m curious as to how many training hours would you consider to be appropriate for a 7-8 year old competitive gymnast, training xcel gold. Xcel is used in place of the lower level JO levels in her gym. How many hours do you think would be too many for this age? I have my own opinion on this but want to hear what others think. I want to make sure she isn’t over training for her age. Thanks!
 

PreciousJ

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Feb 16, 2021
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Sounds about average for Xcel Gold, I think they do 12 hours/week at my gym (9 hours for Silver). We don't have any Golds that young, though.
 

cogymmom2dd

Proud Parent
Feb 9, 2020
193
Our gold team practices 12 hours per week and the youngest (My DD2) is currently 9 and has been practicing at that many hours since the gym re-opened due to COVID last summer when she was 8. She is getting ready to bump her hours up to 16.
 

PeanutsMom

Proud Parent
Jun 14, 2019
202
When my DD was 8 she was JO level 3 and did 3 days a week for 4 hours, so 12 hours. The XG at our gym are approximately the same training hours.
I’m curious as to how many training hours would you consider to be appropriate for a 7-8 year old competitive gymnast, training xcel gold. Xcel is used in place of the lower level JO levels in her gym. How many hours do you think would be too many for this age? I have my own opinion on this but want to hear what others think. I want to make sure she isn’t over training for her age. Thanks
 

TumbleTimes4

Proud Parent
Sep 13, 2016
578
38
When my daughter was 8, she was a level 3 and was practicing 9 hours a week. The Golds in our gym practice about 9-12 hours a week.
 

Mish

Proud Parent
Aug 15, 2015
700
53
So, it seems at many gyms Xcel is still not being used as intended by USAG, which I know has been discussed here ad naseum. My question is then what is the option for kids who really want the true Xcel experience (less hours, ability to participate in other activities, less intense, etc.)? Find a different gym, I guess.
 
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cogymmom2dd

Proud Parent
Feb 9, 2020
193
So, it seems at many gyms Xcel is still not being used as intended by USAG, which I know has been discussed here ad naseum. My question is then what is the option for kids who really want the true Xcel experience (less hours, ability to participate in other activities, less intense, etc.)? Find a different gym, I guess.
Some would think that.
However, compared to other gyms around me who have L4/5 teams, the hours are less.
My DD2 has a few friends who are L4 and practice 16 hours per week. I am using those levels as a comparison based on the requirements for basic gold routines (high bar, vault table, tumbling requirements on floor and beam) are also introduced at JO L4 and 5.
I think it would be really hard to keep consistent skills on XG and above without committing at least 9 hours per week.
 

mommyof1

Proud Parent
Jan 31, 2012
2,540
The car
Based on my daughter's experience, I'd say 12 hours a week (4 days x 3 hours) for the equivalent of L3 and 14 hours a week (4 days x 3.5 hours) for the equivalent of L4 and L5 would be ideal for the majority of kids. My daughter did L3 at 9 hours and again at 12 hours, and the experience was much better at 12 hours with time for more conditioning and uptraining in addition to perfecting routines. For L4 she did 3 days x 4 hours, which was both too infrequent and too long. For L5 she did 4 days x 3.5 hours at a gym that also used those hours more efficiently (lots of side stations, no standing around, quick transitions between events), which was just right.
 

GymDadWA

Proud Parent
Dec 30, 2017
301
43
So, it seems at many gyms Xcel is still not being used as intended by USAG, which I know has been discussed here ad naseum. My question is then what is the option for kids who really want the true Xcel experience (less hours, ability to participate in other activities, less intense, etc.)? Find a different gym, I guess.
Our gym uses Xcel for both "competitive rec" and in place of compulsories, they have groups and do some training with all of Xcel and some training split into groups with different focuses.
 
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JBS

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Proud Parent
Sep 3, 2005
7,301
Wisconsin
I want to make sure she isn’t over training for her age.
One thing to remember is that it is very possible to over train one athlete by doing only 6 hours per week and not over train another by doing 16 hours per week.

There are so many variables...
  • Gym training style
  • Athlete ability
  • Athlete work ethic
  • Athlete attitude / mental state
  • Equipment being used to train (modern vs. old)
  • Coach knowledge
I would recommend looking at stuff like in the article below and watching for signs as your athlete trains...

 

ldw4mlo

Proud Parent
Feb 13, 2015
6,434
62
When my daughter trained at that age it was

7.5 hours for Level 3
9 hours for Level 4 and up. There is an option to do 12 hours, which she started in Level 7

They all can train more in the summer as the gym does camps.
You can select your days and full vs half day ala carte, beyond, normal practice hours
 

CuriousCate

Proud Parent
Jul 12, 2016
677
So, it seems at many gyms Xcel is still not being used as intended by USAG, which I know has been discussed here ad naseum. My question is then what is the option for kids who really want the true Xcel experience (less hours, ability to participate in other activities, less intense, etc.)? Find a different gym, I guess.
Our gym actually does both. Xcel bronze-gold is used by our JO program to get kids to level 6 and a separate Xcel program is used all the way up to Diamond. The "JO Xcels" at our gym are pulled on to the team pretty young (bronze age 5-7, silver 6-9, gold 8-11) from pre-team while the traditional Xcel team is recruited from the traditional recreation class route, starting bronze around ages 8-10. They train separately and attend separate meets so that there is no competition between the groups.
 

JBS

Staff member
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Proud Parent
Sep 3, 2005
7,301
Wisconsin
I forgot to say, we are at either 9 or 12 hours per week at this area. 3 hours x 3 days or 3 hours x 4 days.
 

gymgal

Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Aug 22, 2008
4,655
So, it seems at many gyms Xcel is still not being used as intended by USAG, which I know has been discussed here ad naseum. My question is then what is the option for kids who really want the true Xcel experience (less hours, ability to participate in other activities, less intense, etc.)? Find a different gym, I guess.
There are many gyms that still have lower hours for Xcel. The ones who use it as an alternative for compulsories often incorporate another program, like AAU, for gymnasts who don't want intense hours (or gyms who have preconceived notions about age, talent, skill level)
 
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raenndrops

Coach
Oct 24, 2009
6,788
The 'Wood, Ohio
Some would think that.
However, compared to other gyms around me who have L4/5 teams, the hours are less.
My DD2 has a few friends who are L4 and practice 16 hours per week. I am using those levels as a comparison based on the requirements for basic gold routines (high bar, vault table, tumbling requirements on floor and beam) are also introduced at JO L4 and 5.
I think it would be really hard to keep consistent skills on XG and above without committing at least 9 hours per week.
Even before the pandemic, our gym was 7.5 hours (L3-8 and XG-XP) and our girs keep up their skills and make progress learning new skills.
 

skygirlpc

Proud Parent
Mar 3, 2016
167
My 7yr old is on preteam, training level 4. Our gym doesn't compete until JO level 4. She only does 4 hours a week, 2 hour practices twice a week. We are also currently doing 30 minutes of one on one training a week. So all total she is only at 4.5 hours a week and I am perfectly happy with that.
 
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