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Okay- this has been annoying me for the past several months. I need a
second opinion. :indifferent:

There's this girl in my class, and year younger and over a foot shorter then
me, who's being given loads of attention. She's going to be on team this year,

I can do everything she can, heck- I can do more. I know 85% of the
compulsory routines (I can never get all those poses on beam quite right).
She didn't even know the difference between optional and compulsory until I
mentioned it to her. :rottentomato:

As you can see I'm pretty jealous, so this may have blinded me to some obvious
reasons why she's being picked and not me. But something very interesting
happened just yesterday.

I went to another gym for open gym time, as my gym is closed for the week.
The coaches there thought I was pretty good and invited me to join them for
the last hour of practice!! So ironic, especially since that gym is 45 minutes
away, so I can't go there regularly! :worried:

I have made it clear that I am interested in doing team. When I said to my
coach that I would like to do team, she replied with "Yeah, so would I." My
other coach just nodded and said that was a "good thing to work towards."

Give me an hour and I'll learn a routine! Ask me to name all the level 6-8
team members- I will! I watch them practice every monday! Ask her to try a
Tkachev (not that she'd ever do one)- she'll say, "what's that?"

I have all my level 5 skills except for kips and vault. The only part of the bar
routine she can do is the back hip circle-underswing-dismount.

My coaches say there are certain skills you have to have, but they didn't say
what they were. The team coach watched her do one thing and said she had
everything she needed. :ill:

I'm ready to write an essay on why they should give me a chance. What
should I do??
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I would talk to the coach. You could say you want to know the skills you need so you can work on them or you could tell your coach the whole thing. That you think its not fair.
Hope everything works out!!!
I would talk to your coach and ask 1. why you are not moving up and 2. ask her what skills you need to work on. If your gym will not move you up I would look around at some other gyms in your area. I really up that you make the team! Good luck!
Instead of telling your coaches you'd really like to be on team, ask them what you need to do to make team--what skills are you lacking, etc. If they don't have a good response for you, ask the team coaches--if there isn't a time you can talk to them, then leave a note or send them an e-mail. Don't compare yourself to others--sometimes coaches are looking at body form, etc. too, not just what skills they have now. And some coaches look at age, body type, etc. too--not fair, but it happens!

Good luck and keep working at it!!

i agree with flipandtwist (shes my friend) u should tell them how u feel and say im way better than her say i can do evrything she can do y am i not on team????srry if it doesnt work out!!hope i helped!!!;)
Prove to them that you're better!! Mumping and moaning won't get you anywhere- you have to put the work in and get those skills- if she's anything like how you've described her she won't last long!!

Good luck- and sorry if this sounds a bit harsh!
You do need to talk with the coaches. Set up a time to talk with them when they have some down time---not right before or after practice. You have to get information on what skills they do want to see and what else? Better form? Stronger run? Ask them to be specific with you. DO NOT bring up this other girl. This meeting should be about you and your gymnastics and nothing else.
First I'd like to say that you do need to fight for what you want. Don't give up on your dreams no matter what.

But the difficult bit can be that each gym has different expectations of what is right for team. You don't say how old you are but judging by the way you type you are definatly older than average for level 4 or 5. Now, there is no ideal age for level 4 or 5, in fact there can be many advantages to doing it older. But some gyms will have an age limit and they wont allow anyone older than this on team. Other gyms may not have an official age limit but will have an age limit in their minds and wont even consider asking someone older than this age to team.

It will all depend on your gyms goals. If their goals are to produce elites they are going want their athletes at level 4 to be 6-7 years old maximum. And their level 5's to be 7-8 years old maximum. Those who are older than this may not even get a look in. Other gyms are not as interested in elite but want to produce collage bound athletes. To get a college scholarship in general you need to be a good level 10 by the time you are in the 10th grade. So college bound gyms are a little more flexible than those aiming to develop elites. But even those gyms will aim for their level 4's to be no older that 8-10 years old and their level 5's no older than 9-11.

If your gym has an age limit on team you need to find out what it is, and if you fit into it. Find out why they have a limit. Even if you want to just learn skills and enjoy competing your gym wont put you on the team if you are say 12 or 13 and the rest of the team are 6 or 7. If they do have age limits or preferred age limits find out what they do with kids your age. Some gyms have other things like a tramp and tumble comp team for the older kids.

If your gym doesn't have an age limit there are other things that could be not helping. Your height for example. Again you dont say how tall you are but if a girl a year younger than you is a foot shorter then you are obviously not short for your age. Many gyms will only accept tiny girls onto their team. This can affect how your skills look too. If you are tall for your age you may look older and they may have more expectations on you while this short girl may look younger than she is.

Gymnastics is a sport that is easier for short people but that doesn't mean a tall person can not become outstanding at it. However, it can create a bias in your coaches minds. Perhaps the team coaches are quite small and they dont feel safe to spot a taller girls, perhaps they fear you will grow too tall for gymnastics.

I am not saying these things to discourage you but to help you understand why the sitaution you are in may not seem fair. It is not always fair.

However, if you want to be on team badly enough there will be a way, but you may need to be twice as good. But in the end that can only be a good thing. You will have to work harder than the others to get on team, so you will end up better.

The first step can be to increase your training. If you are going 1 day a week, go twice, if you are going 2 days a week go three times. If they dont have another class like your take another class, anything even a trampoline class or somehting to increase your skills. The more you are in the gym the more you will learn. The more often you are there the faster you will learn, also, you will be in their face more and they will see how dedicated you are.

Ask your coaches what you need to work on and ask them to set you a program you can do at home to improve it. Also look into other gyms in your area and see what their team expectations are.
i had like the same problem tryin to get to seven last year... just work your butt off. show them that you will be their top scorer. but my coach just told us we needed every skill then just chose who they wanted up and who they didnt.
I'm 12 years old (almost 13) and 5'6.

And I have been working really hard. Even my coach says so, ironically..

I wrote them a letter yesterday. This is what it says:

To whom this may concern (at DC):

Hello. This is Hannah, and I’m writing this to let you guys know I am very interested in the competitive team program. I am not by any means insinuating that I’m “super-talentedâ€￾ or “specialâ€￾, just very interested and dedicated.

I wouldn’t be writing this at all if it wasn’t for the simple fact that other gymnasts of equal (and possibly lesser) ability appear to have admitted into the team program without any drama. I wish these gymnast the best, but I am slightly irritated (and jealous) that I seem to have been left off in this respect. As of current, I have all of my level 4 skills and most of my level 5 skills, excluding kips and vault. In addition, I have memorized the level 4 and 5 floor routines, most of the beam routines, and all bar and vault requirements for compulsory levels 4-6. Also, I know most of the difficulty values for skills commonly used in optional levels 7-10. I believe I more than qualify for at least a fair chance at the program.

I’ve taken to watching the level 6 girls’ team practice on Mondays before my class starts. I like watching them, and over time I have learned most of their names. I would like very much to participate.

Thank you for your time.
That is a really good letter. you told them how you felt and it should make a point that you went and took the time to tell them you really want to be on team. it should show them that you are truly dedicated and you really want this. I am a 5' 2" girl and i know how it feels when everyone is sooo short. it just makes me push harder though and really reach for my goals. if you work hard enough, it doesn't matter about your outer appearance but your strength and willingness to succeed. I am a level 4/5 (Rookie 2) and i am really trying to make myself the best gymnast i can be and if that means that i won't be going to the Olympics, that's okay with me. :D:D:D
Writing the letter is a great idea, I would leave out the irrelevant stuff. I would leave out the stuff about knowing all the difficulty value's for the level 7-10 skills or the fact you have learned all the names of the level 6 girls. This sort of stuff is not what the coaches are interested in.

Stick to two pieces of information - your ability and your desire. Talk about what you can do such as having all your level 4 and most level 5 skills and knowing the routine and how hard you are prepared to work and how much you want to be on the team.

Many gyms also choose team kids based a bit on their personality, if they think they will be easy or hard to work with the coaches. For some coaches a kid like you would be a dream, one who knows the names and difficulty of all the skills, which shows you have a lot of interest. For other coaches that information would turn them off, as they may feel you'll be one of those gymnasts who are in their ear saying "why dont I do this skill and that to get this difficulty value". They would prefer a non questioning gymnast, kind of like many prefer parents who stay out of it and let the parents do the coaching.

Also be aware that there is a big difference between being able to do all the level 4 and 5 skills and being able to compete them. Perhaps you can do a round off back handspring but perhaps your back handspring has bent legs, leg seperation, is too short and so on. meaning that the coaches will have to complelty reteach you the level 4/5 comp skills before you could compete. Be aware of this, why not ask your coach what you need to work on to make your skills better.
You have some obvious dedication, desire, and passion for gymnastics. If you continue working hard like you are now your coaches will soon realize the large improvements you make in your gymnastics, however you should be patience for whatever reason your coaches may not recognize all of your improvement immediately, but dont' let that discourage you, let it motivate you to show them you have what it takes. You will know and they will know when everything has fallen into place and it is one of the sweetest feelings ever.
Best of luck to you!

I also think my favorite quote applies to your situation

hard work given time will defeat talent.. =)

SO keep up the hard work it will pay off eventually I promise!
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