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Proud Parent
Aug 18, 2008
Arlington, TX
So after moving to Texas we have been trying little gymmie at different gyms. We thought we had found a home but the drive ended up being to much and gymmie cried everytime we took her.
Gymnastics is just VERY different out here, she went from feeling special to being told she's not good enough. She was training level 3/4 and out here they took her back down to LEVEL 1! I have been told she doesnt have enough focus to have a "longterm career" whatever that means, and that her skills "are to erratic to be useful"? :mad:
I tried explaining to the coaches our circumstances (her favorite coach left the gym right before we moved, then we moved, the horrible experience at another TX gym) but they basically told me that gymnastics in Texas has no room for kids that can't "suck it up". So this gym put her in a Level 1 preteam program, training 50 minutes a week! :eek: The other kids in her group were maybe 4 or 5 and she's 7. I asked them if there was a way to have her train more hours and they said no. Of course she was bored out of her mind, yes she got to perfect those little things about bars (her worst apparatus) but was doing circles around the other kids in every other event.
I finally asked the coach if she could at least try being with the level 2 team and see how she does and was told no. I explained that she was crying because there was no challenege to what she was doing, his exact words "No, she's crying because she isn't getting what she wants". :eek:
So we left and now gymmie says she hates gymnastics and never wants to do it again. :( I dont know if this because of what has happened with the gyms or if she really is done. Now she wants to do cheer. I really dont think she actually wants to do cheer so we have found a little beginner cheer class for her to try. It just happens to be in a gymnastics facility so I am hoping that if she sees the other kids doing it she will want to go back. I caught her practicing the Level 3 beam routine in her room the other night and she still does her stretching and jump roping.
I almost cried today when I found her black team leo and she asked me what we were going to do with all of leos :(


Proud Parent
Mar 6, 2009
I don't know what to say . . . . (((((((((((((((hugs))))))))))))))))))))
my heart breaks for you and your DD.

I know TX is hardcore when it comes to gymnastics . . but there aren't any gyms that are more rec based? Are there any USAIGC gyms?

Good Luck!
Feb 26, 2007
Ugh that is such an ugly side to gymnastics. Dending you ((((HUGS))))), but I really don't have any words of wisdom.

Poor little girl.
I'm so sorry. What a horrible situation. I'd just give it a bit of time. My daughter didn't start gym until months after her 7th birthday. She may find that love again!

I'd definitely look around for a friendlier gym when she shows interest again.
Nov 5, 2007
That is so terrible.Almost sounds to me that she is still interested in gymnastics.
My daughter got bored one time and wanted to quit.Fortunately they moved her up and she did great.
Mar 5, 2008
North America
Awwww--poor girl. I totally feel for her. The only words of wisdom I can give is that my dd started in gymnastics (tumbling) at age 6, then did all star cheer from ages 6-9, and then switched back to gymnastics last April at age 9. She loves gymnastics and is doing well. She also misses cheer and is also interested in Track. I guess what I am trying to say is that if she really loves the sport, taking a break to try other things is ok. She can always go back to gymnastics and be successful. My dd started really late and is doing really well so far. The cheerleading is also a great sport to get into and she can learn some great tumbling skills and work with a team. I'm sorry that you guys have to go through this :-(.

Good luck and we are here for you whenever you need us!!
Sep 27, 2007
I am so sorry...she must be so sad. Yes--Texas is very hardcore--which is sometimes not a very attractive side of things....but the positive spin on it is...there are TONS of gyms to pick from. I am not sure which part of Texas you are in, but if you PM me---I could possibly give you some different gyms to try.

Hang in there...I know the perfect gym for your dd is out there!:)


Ohhh! I am so sorry to hear that! We are right there w/ you, adjusting to TX style gymnastics is a bit challenging, as they are very competitive here.

However, I strongly believe that your dd can find a place to fit in and enjoy the sport. I think it just takes a bit more time here, because the more prominent gyms are so picky.

I believe you said a while back that you were moving to the Arlington area? If so, there are a few gyms pretty near you. I would start near home, as your dd is still young, and at L3/L4 it's just not necessary to drive all over kingdom-come! I continue to refuse to drive my dd more than 15-ish minutes at her level (L6/training L7).

Next, you may want to start at a gym that offers TAAF or TGGA, which are less competitive/intense that USAG, and a great way to compete and still have fun. She can move to a USAG program any time you feel she is ready for the bigger committment and intensity that the USAG programs require here.

I did a quick Yahoo Map search, and in Arlington there are 2 gyms that look ok at first glance: Texas Academy of Gymnastics, and ASI (ASI offers TAAF, TGGA and USAG). I don't know anything about these gyms though, so check them out well first!

I think probably, your dd does not dislike 'gymnastics as a sport', as much as she's just had a traumatic experience w/ a tough gym, on top of a big move/change in your lives.

You might try what we did. Put your dd in a tumbling class or something of that nature, at a gym you think she may like to join for team eventually. Let her just enjoy the easier schedule and having fun at it for a while. She can catch up w/ bars, beam etc. easily later on. After a while, she may decide she's ready to go back and try a full dose of competitive gym, especially if she see the L3 or L4 team practicing while she is at her tumbling class. The fact that she is still doing her beam routine in her room is a good indication that she still loves it!

Talk to the gyms you try first, and be very up front about what has gone on w/ her at the other gyms here. The gyms who are most supportive and sympathetic of her situation---go for those.

Good luck, and I'm so sorry she is having a rough time! I just know it will get better for you & her, so don't give up:)!
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Sep 8, 2007
How sad(((( big hugs))) to your dd.I think MSL529 has gave you very good advise.It sounds like you just have not been to the right gym .A break from gymnastics might be good and you could check out some gyms without taking her to get a feel on how they work what there requirements for team are.Nobody like to be told they are not good enough and I think my dd would have the same reacaction has yours.


Wow, that seems very harsh to me. I knew Texas was competitive, but aren't there a ton of gyms to choose from? I think MSL529 did give you some good advice. It's hard to believe that there aren't gyms near you that aren't so competitive and that wouldn't be thrilled to have your dd on team. I am sure that her attitude right now stems from all the difficulty she had in this latest gym. Definitely get her into a gym that does T&T or Cheer and also gymnastics. I am betting she will wind up wanting to do gym again as long as it's a supportive atmosphere. Best of luck to you and your dd.



Proud Parent
Proud Parent
Sep 25, 2007
Your post made me cry. I remember how excited she was about gymnastics when she got moved up and how much she loved it. I remember also having the possibility of moving to TX and I was actually excited about having more gyms to choose from, other leagues, etc. I am so glad I didn't. I can see the same thing happening/being told to my little 6 year old and no one wants to feel like they aren't good enough anymore.

We are dealing with that on some level at her own gym, which is why she wants to quit or find another gym if she has to do level 4 again there. She wasn't chosen for the special group and often sees them do fun things she wishes she could do, a friend is in it and I know she wishes sometimes I had kept my mouth shut and not asked any questions and just let her be in it. She is probably not being moved to level 5 and her best bud is. She is even saying she wants to do something else besides gym, which is something she has never said. She was even shocked when her best gym bud wanted to quit before (for same reasons) and now she is saying the same things. So, I feel your pain, just not to the extent you guys are feeling it.

I hope that some of these Texas mamas can help you find a gym for her that will see the amazing little girl you have and give her a chance. "Long term career"?????????? I hope they get over themselves. So many girls start later and do amazing and many 6 year olds aren't focused. I would definitely cross them off your list permanently and send them a nice letter telling them how rude they are. Then, when she does find a gym and is doing wonderfully, send them a video. LOL. Okay, so maybe not that far, but still.

Hugs to you and your DD. I would give her a little break, let her do that cheer class and then maybe start looking for more supportive gyms.


Moving is never easy, and changing states in the middle of a school year can be even harder. I think the most important thing is for her to settle in at school, make new friends and know that it will take a little time to acclimate to the ways of a foreign land. I'd focus on making sure she's acclimating in school and finding new friends first because it sounds like breaking through at one of these gyms is going to take some mental toughness.

She's going to need to take a step back, but it sounds as if she's going to receive a high level of coaching and in the long run it could make her a better gymnast if she's up to the challenge. I'm sure it's not easy, but maybe you could set some short term goals with rewards to help her get her confidence and focus back.

Starting at L1 at a gym that focuses on fundamentals could benefit her in the long run if she can just concentrate on the task at hand. Before you know it, this could all just be a little bump in the road and with some focus, determination and hard work she'll be back to where she was except stronger for rising to the challenge of a higher standard.

It shouldn't be long before she starts to consistently outperform the kids who are 2 to 3 years younger than she is and she could be back to L3/4 in no time at all, only stronger mentally and with better fundamentals. This could lay the foundation for a better things to come!!! Try and turn it into a positive if you can


Proud Parent
Proud Parent
Sep 25, 2007

I thought I was a positive person, but you just really brought out a lot of positive points from a really sad sounding situation. Bravo for you. No wonder your DD is so amazing! :D

I do think though that the experiences she had were WRONG. I wouldn't try those gyms again probably, unless I had no choice.


Hi mariposamama,

I would be very happy if there was a gym near us that had such high standards....AND...was very open and honest about their expectations. Saying that the gym is not the right fit is one thing, but I wouldn't fault them for stating exactly what they are and what they expect.

Personally, we did not allow DD to start competitive gymnastics until she was 8 years old, so at the age of 6 or 7 it wouldn't be the right fit for us either....but at the age of 11, I know that DD would thrive in such a situation and wouldn't care what level she was starting in if the trade-off was getting a very high level of coaching. Unfortunately, we do not have such an option.

I would keep looking. That gym sounds like it's NOT the place for her -- or any "outsider" for that matter. It's amazingly to me that some owners and coaches would think someone at level 3 would accept being put back to L1. Too me, that's like moving to a new area only to have your 3th grader be put back into kindergarden, just because. That's beyond stupid. Why don't they just challenge her with their idea of what a L3 requires. I'm sure your DD would rise to the challenge. And if not, she say's at L3 until she does. Win-Win.

If she's not happy -- leave. There is no point to being there if she's bored or literally in tears, much less paying good money for it.

I know where your coming from though. When we moved from TX to MO, my then 14 yr old son was a 2nd degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do. After we moved, and looked around for a new school for him -- everyone in our area said that he'd have to start out as a beginner "White belt" again and move up. There were no exceptions, no acknologments of his previous accomplishments, or 5 years of training. The ONLY school that would accept his previous training was an hour and a half away. So he just picked a local school to try it out. He lasted about 5 months. ( To his credit, I wouldnt have lasted more then two) He was bored stiff and when we asked if he could "test out", the owner flat out said no, and we had to wait the "mandatory" 6 months between test cycles. DS was upset, I was PO'd. He gave it up completely and never went back. A short time later, he found competitve swimming and he was happy all over again.

My heart goes out to you and DD.
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gym law mom

Proud Parent
Dec 23, 2006
So sorry to hear this move has been tough on the family. Take a step back and pull dd out of the equation. With all you know about the current gym, does it seem to have a good program or does the whole team structure seem very "hard core?" If this gym isn't good for her now(maybe in the future as Team Dad mentioned) then let her do some cheerleading and look around at other gyms/programs. She might like T/T or the rec league they have in TX. You may have to bite the bullet and realize that if dd stays USAG at a TX gym, she'll have to make up some ground.

I do think many gyms have the "hold the new kid back" philosophy. A girl came to our gym from out of state after competing L7. Parents were very honest that it was a "weak" year of L7 and they weren't upset at all in having her repeat it. She worked her butt off and ended up finishing 7th in her age group at states last spring. Unfortunately dad is in the military and once again---another move. Now at a gym in the LA area and was told her form was lacking and no way were they going to let her compete L8. She and her parents did think about hanging it all up, but she is doing her 3rd year at L7 to see if she can get the "form" this gym wants and be able to compete L8 next year.

Take some time with dd. Let her try some other things right now(its not worth the tears at every practice) and you do some research on other gyms/programs that might be a better fit.


Proud Parent
Aug 16, 2008
Wow. That is very intense, and very sad. It is hard enough to move to a new state...and now this, I am sure you and she are both very upset.

I think you've been given some excellent advice. I know my dd would have major problems with being moved "down" 2 levels, so I'd tend to agree with the folks who say try to find a different gym.

I am making a mental note never to move to Texas!;) (just kidding, I am actually hoping to never move ANYWHERE ever again...we did the cross country move 3 yrs ago and I am just now getting used to living in a different part of the counrty).

Good luck to you. I'm so sorry this happened! I hope it works out for the better, somehow!
Jan 18, 2009
Oh, that sounds awful, I am so sorry. I will remember to not move to TX if that is how they feel about their gymmies. She probably is just frustrated with the boredom. Hopefully you can find a good gym. Good Luck
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