For Parents Was a little blown away. Okay..maybe alot.

Parents... Coaches... Judges... Gymnasts...
DON'T LURK... Join The Discussion!

Members See FEWER Ads!
Join for FREE!
Not open for further replies.


Moderator/Proud Parent
Proud Parent
Aug 3, 2009
In The Boondocks
Went to the parents meeting tonight (first one of the year). We were supposed to have a fundraising committee meeting afterwards..but the reg meeting ran so long (over 2 hrs) that we postponed it until the first part of June.
They talked about any new rules ect. that they have. They talked about if you have a problem with how things are ran come to them..not another parent. (I know of one instance where something like this happened..but they were not not sure who this directed at).
Anywho..then the HC said...For those of you who pay your children to do good at meets..if you could please ask you child to refrane from talking about how much money they are going to make from that particular meet during awards...that would be great.
I could not even wrap my poor pea-brain around her statement...let alone the idea that this is done.
Then, as all the parents are looking around the room with mouths hung open..eyes unblinking... One parents pipes up...Well its a great motivator for so and so..if I offer her 20 bucks for every 9 she gets.
If anyone practices this..i do not mean this offensivly. But if it ever got to the point where I had to pay my DD to do her best..then I would know it was time to sit down with her and discuss if this is really the sport for her anymore.
Yes, after every meet we go out to eat. (normaly because we are out of town..the meet happened during her dinner time...its after 9pm and we have at least an hour to drive home). But I dont base how she does on her reward. We just go out..get a bite to eat..and talk about what a wonderful job she did. You feel off beam..oh got back up didnt you? You didnt get all the way over on your hip circle..oh stuck with it till you got it around all by yourself..didnt you? I asked my dd what she liked best about this past comp season and she said. "I had fun, I did my best, and I made new friends".
Everyone has their way of doing things..i was just taken aback by this. The parent said it like it was no big we all do it. But this is the same parent that thinks we should for-go a certain meet this coming season because their DD doesnt like the domed top to the arena. :rolleyes:
Just had to share that one. Very few things leave me baffled..but this one I cant seem to stop thinking about. I really do feel for the DD. How is she going to handle being out in the real world?
  • Like
Reactions: 4 people
I have never and will never pay my daughter to do well. I don't bribe her with things or money for skills either. To each his own I guess.

I would have probably gasped out loud if I heard a parent say they paid $20 for each 9 their kid got. That is just insane. What are they teaching their kid?! And isn't gymnastics expensive enough without adding a possible $80 to each one? Just nuts.
I just don't understand that, although I think it is probably more common than any of us would like to know about. My take is if you have to pay your daughter to go to practice (yes, I did hear that one once) or do well in a meet, then my guess is that gymnastics is a whole lot more about the parent than the child and that is just sad. Those poor kids.
I know i have bribed my dd with a treat after and well even a leo if she got a skill but that was because she was having SOO much trouble and we wanted an incentive to get it!, even goofy things like I will do a cartwheel in front of the house etc!! but like I said it was cause she wanted it so bad tho that was the biggest incentive but I do think sometimes it cannot hurt but not meets etc! and not regularly! yikes
That's WAY over the top! No way I would pay for scores! My kids are competitive enough...I try to focus on fun. I offered ice cream after every meet no matter the outcome. It turned into supper because they really wanted food after the long meets...not sweets, but same principle. I wont bribe my kids to go to any gym function either. Hey if they dont want to be there...think of the money I would save!
Yeah, I agree. I just cant wrap my head around the thought process on that. And like I is this kid going to survive in the real world? Going to be in for a heck of a shock. We always go out to eat afterwards started as a product of cercumstance..but has turned into a tradition.
Im glad im not the only one that is shocked by it (other than the other parents who had the same monkey doing a math problem stare that I did). To this parent it seemed so natural and normal. I just dont get it. But I also know its not really mine to
Oh wow! Haven't seen this is gymnastics.... yet :O DS used to play in a soccer team where there were a couple of kids that were paid $5 per goal that they scored. I was totally gobsmacked by the practice, soccer is a sport... and a team sport at that, and we were talking about six and seven year old kids. We tend to go out for something to eat after a comp, but we do this because we are hungry and away from home and it is never dependent upon scores or how my gymnast's performed.
I even get painted as a baddy by my kids because the older ones said their friends were getting paid for exam grades at school - so much for an A, a B etc - I never have and never will pay for this type of thing - I tell them they should be trying their best anyway, and the achievement is the reward for hard work, not being paid for it!
I do give my DD rewards for things such as doing her best in a competition or finally getting a new skill she has been struggling with. I also usually get her a small treat after training. But these are rewards rather than bribes, there is a difference. I never give her money, and nothing is ever based on getting a certain score.

That said, I remember one year at school I desperately wanted a certain kind of new bike, and my parents said I could have it if I got straight A's in my exams. So I worked hard because I really wanted that bike. Rewards can be great motivators. It would be nice if everyone was motivated purely by the achievement itself, and I guess some kids are, but a lot kids are not like that. I was a lazy kid and probably wouldn't have worked hard at my schoolwork without the bike as an incentive. However, my DD always tries her hardest at competitions so it isn't the same. If I offered her rewards for 9s, I don't she would score any higher, and it would make her feel like a failure if she didn't get there.
Wow, yeah I would not do that.

I tried doing ice cream for a couple of times, like as a pp said, if they were really struggling with a skill and seemed to need a push. Well, not DS but DD. But it didn't work out very well. If they don't want the skill, don't do the skill. If they don't want to be their best, get off the gymnastics team.
That is the funniest thing I have ever heard, parenting FAIL! We got ice cream after every meet, good or bad, that is it. If my kids do well they get to be proud of that. Funny though there are parents who reward good grades at school, oldest DD has a 95% average and once asked why I wouldn't and I said her reward was feeling proud that she did it for herself and her future not for financial benefit, as the rewarded kids are growing up they seem to care less about their grades and the money and are slowly slacking off, so the rewards are growing!

Also not every kid is capable of straight A's, or 9's in gym, rewarding effort is truly the only kind way to do things if you feel you must bribe.
  • Like
Reactions: 4 people
Aren't the kids in this because they WANT to be in it? Maybe giving monetary incentives would be different if you're trying to encourage a child to do well in school because they HAVE to do that (luckily, both my girls have done great in school so far so we've been able to save our money!). But if they do gymnastics for fun, you shouldn't have to bribe them, right?

I suppose it's a slippery slope though... I've given Kathy pins and bears and such for big skills (she has a "got my kip" bear, for example), and at the beginning of the season this year I bought a 9.0 pin for each event... she only earned the floor and the beam pins this year. I'm guessing that I'll be holding on to the bar pin for quite a while (maybe forever). AND (a little embarassed by this one) Kathy really wants a snake. She asked "If I get a 33, can I get a snake? A 34? A 35? A 36?" so finally I said yes, if she got a 36, she could have a snake. This was at a meet early in the season when she was scoring 31's and 32's, so I thought I was pretty safe with a 36. It was mostly in jest, but of course, she told her coaches and I was pretty embarassed. And no, she did not get a 36 (if she had, I would wonder about her dedication to the sport, I think... if it took a bribe like that for her to do her best).
Yeah, I slept on this and still cant get my brain around it. I would never pay my children to do their best at anything either. Esp to set a standard on that best. Because sometimes your best is a 7 and sometimes a 9. So the day you get a 7 and did your best isnt as good as the day you did your best and got a 9? Where would you even draw the line with something like that? Not only is it teaching this poor girl bad habits..or thought processes. (im not going to do my best unless I get something out of it)..but in its own sense its demeaning the parents who dont do this. At least to the children who dont fully understand why so and so, who got 2 9s and walked away with 40bucks and they got 4 9s and walked away with nothing (persay). I think that was more the HCs point in saying it. This was being talked about on the comp floor during awards..and some of the younger ones (who just arent old enough to understand...that the money deal isnt really about the child..but the parent) were feeling like their parents didnt care.
We were all just dumbfounded. I almost thought she was jokeing at first (because after she said the little ones feel like their parents dont love them as much..she did joke and im tired of hearing how they are making more at the meets than I do as a coach (then she laughed..trying to make her point her point..but make light at the same time). Then that one parent pipped up and said they paid their DD for every 9 she got..that it was how they motivated her to do her best. It just blew me away. Im kinda glad I was struck stupid at that point...because Lord knows what smart-alec comment I would have made. And a parent who was so flippant at it as that..i was liable to have been WW3.
I knew that they couldnt have been the first parent to ever do this...but it was a first for me to hear about.
I have heard of parents paying their children for good grades. And although I was not paid as a child (parents didnt have the money to do it),and I will not do it as an adult. (at least im pretty I do get it with the grades. Souly is something they HAVE to do. They dont always CHOOSE to go to school. And how they do in school directly affects their future. A sport does least not in most cases..and those it does..its not because the parent paid them to do their best, its because they loved the sport so much they gave it their all and the cards fell into place for them.
I have a pretty open mind..and even though I may not practice a certain something myself, or even believe in it, normaly I can see the reason behind it. But this, I just dont see how the child benifits.
Its really none of my business what other parents do with their kids (within reason of course..abuse is another story)...but that one just really got me and was eating at me. I just had to share my WTH
  • Like
Reactions: 2 people
I bribe my kid sometimes for various reasons and I'm not afraid to admit it, but I would never bribe her for scores. She can't control those and that would lead to a sure disappointment.

Her very first meet she was terrified and I was afraid that she wouldn't get out there at all. I told her that if she went out there and did her best, no matter what happenned, she could get a toy of her choosing afterwards. It wasn't performance related in any way. It was just something to give her some courage to actually go out there and try, which she didn't want to do. That was for the first meet only and I never had to do it again because she loved competing after that. I had to bribe her for her first dance recital too after she stood on the stage and cried during the dress rehearsal. She's often afraid to try new things and it gives her something to focus on. Usually once she tries something, she's fine.

And I will occasionally bribe her at practice for something she's having trouble with. Her coach had been working hard with her to really get her legs straighter on her BHS so I told her she could have her snack from the snack machine instead of eating the snack she brought that day if she kept her legs straight. It worked.

I don't think these are really big deals though some parents might disagree. And they are used very infrequently.

A parent at our gym told her DD she coud have a puppy if she got all 9's. That was a disaster. The girl went first on bars and got an 8.8 which was like a point higher than any score she'd ever had on bars. The girl was crying though because she had already lost her puppy. Then she went and fell on beam because she was already upset. I told her mom at the start of the meet that those kinds of bribes are bad. You can't control scores. Some meets score really tight, others really loose. You can't even rely on scores to say they did better or worse.
  • Like
Reactions: 2 people
I will not be paying my daughter for her performances for any gymnastics. If after a meet she wants to go out to eat and celebrate for doing her best then we will go grab something to eat. I couldn't pay her to do good. She needs to learn to put all her effort in for herself and team without the justification of getting paid to do it.
Top this - video equipment, pets, etc...

Yes, it happens and I say, what idiots those parents are. It's one thing to offer encouragement in the way of a treat, entirely another to "motivate" your child with bribes.

There are parents who do the same to "incent" their kids to do well in school for good grades.

Our coaches always say, the motivation has to come from inside. If you don't have it, you don't succeed in the end.
I totally agree. I will never pay my DD to do well in a meet, ever. I am already stressing about how to budget for comp season & summer gym camp, let alone pay the kid to do well in gymnastics, which I am already paying for! Helloooo!

DD LOVES gym. She left practice last night & asked me if she could stay there forever. She has a field trip next week & they don't get back until 4 p.m., which is also a practice night that starts at the same time. She asked if she could wear her leo to school so that when I pick her up, we can go straight to the gym. Her passion & love for the sport is the only thing I want her to use as motivation. She will be competing for the first time this coming season & had looked at me the other day with these big eyes and said, "What if I come in last place, Mommy?" I told her that it doesn't matter what place she gets, I will be SO proud of her & that we will celebrate her courage, determination & progress no matter what...with dinner or ice cream :)

I had heard around at our old gym, that parents were promising kids iPod Touch's, big screen t.v.'s, iPhone's, etc. for placing well at meets. That, to me, is just awful and poor parenting. If it comes to that, it's time to find a new sport, because it's not for the child anymore, it's for the parents bragging rights or unfulfilled personal dreams. Get a therapist!
Luckily my child is one of those kids who turns it out when the eyes are on her, so there's no need for such incentives at meets. I see people on here saying kids should always work hard just for the satisfaction and that's just not always reality. My child is very motivated by competition, which is in a lot of ways a lot like being motivated by a reward. I'd love it if she were motivated to do her best all the time, but she just isn't. She's the kid who will fall off the beam on her cartwheel 50 times, but make everyone stop and watch her and she'll do it perfect. She needs little incentives like contests, 5 minutes on the tramp, extra snack time from her coaches. She's 6. I don't find this unusal.
LOL. Sign of the times I guess since this is not the only area it happens in. Hopefully enough of us will buck the system and turn the tide. (actually sounds like there are a lot of us here). This is why I enjoy the CB :)
NGL, niether do I. I do not see anything wrong with it. Goes back to me saying doing their best and getting a 7 at one meet and doing their best and getting a 9 at the next. Kadee is the same way. Kadee is also young (5 will be 6 in Aug). And sometimes gets side tracked or gets her mind locked on one thing..and the rest is out the widow. But i do honestly believe its the best she can do that day. For her little 5 yr old brain...some days she can lock it in and be focused strictly on the task at hand (gymnastics or other) for hours..and sometimes..she can not focus more than little short burst at a time on anything. But I still believe even on those days she is doing her best. I know as an adult, I do this also. Somedays I can go through my day just as smooth a silk. Clean EVERYTHING..have dinner ready, kids bahted, clothes picked out for the next day, lunches packed..ect and have time to watch my favorite reality show. And then there are days that no matter how hard I try to get my crud together, dinner is late, I forget to have the kids pick out their clothes for tomorrow, forgot to pack lunches..ect. I tried just as hard, but for whatever reason, that day I just couldnt keep my mind on what I was doing.
Kadee too seems to thrive on the whole comp ordeal. She loves everyone watching her. So she turns it And she is very young she is very much in that tryng to please everyone stage of life. So for her at this point..just a pat on the back, high five, hug and kiss all she wants. We also go out to dinner afterwards. Like I said it started out because we really needed to (late ending during normal dinner time..long trip home) and turned into something fun we do now..because we want to. We do this regaurdless of her results. It has nothing to to with how she did score or placement wise. Its more about the falls, wobbles and bobbles..and getting back up there on that beam 5 yrs old and showing herself (more so than anyone else) that she can do it.
And I dont see anything wrong with offering a little something for finally trying something they have been afraid of...or finally making a 9 on that dreaded nemesis of theirs (Kadee's is you ladies are talking about icecream and buttons or teddy bears..not 20 dollars for each 9 at a meet. (possibly making 80bucks a meet). There is a big difference. At least in my eyes.
Not open for further replies.