For Parents Were your kids on a REC program b4 team?

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Classes are recreational, aren't they ???

At our old gym, they had classes (Junior Gym 3, Junior Gym 4, Kindergym, etc) and then they had the rec program, which was divided into "teams" by level and by teacher (ie. Sally's Level 2, Donna's Level 3, etc). They competed in in-house meets (ex. Sally's L2- 1st place; Donna's L2- 2nd place, etc). There were four levels on the rec league. This gym also had a regular competitive team program.
aaahhh - I get it. We've never been at a gym like that. It was either rec classes or team - no in between.
Shawnee was invited to start right on the team after one trial class/evaluation with the team kids. But she had 2 + years of cheerleading experience and strong tumbling skills.

There definitely is a disadvantage though, the other girls already know things and everything is new for her (other than the tumbling) But she catches on quick and it seems to be great incentive for her. She wants to do these things just as well.

Which by the way, she started learning the level 4 routines....she was SO excited. The plan, is hopefully, compete once or twice at level 4 and 5 (getting the needed scores, i guess?) Then start training for level 6.

Had to share.... thanks :)
I have one in rec and one doing L3. Most kids start in a rec class and go from there, but I've seen some come in, do a few classes, and be moved to a L3 or L4 team. My oldest did rec for 3 mos before moving to the L3 team; her sister continues to do rec as she doesn't want to compete.

I would say they definitely advance quicker in a team program as they are usually with girls working at the same skill level. Over in the rec program, my younger dd tends to slack off and goof around and often has kids who have never set foot in a gym before in her group. And the coaches change frequently with the rec program at our gym (all competent and I have no probs with that, just something to note) whereas the team coaches remain the same. This can present "situations" just because the coach doesn't know what the child is capable of and may not expect them to work up to their ability. For example - my 5yo rec gymnast has her pullover and hip circle on bars, yet acted like she could barely hold the bar last night. The coach hasn't been with the group very long and just assumed this was what she was capable of, and treated her like she couldn't do anything. ;) (I ratted her out though, hahahaha)
I think there's probably a big variety of ways gyms are structured. While the majority do have rec classes that feed into the team program, there are some where they're completely different streams. One of the gyms we competed against in our old state had their team program start at level one. So from the day someone walks in the door they're asked to choose whether they want to be on the competitive track or recreational. They also have to be evaluated to join the team track.

The gym my kids started at was small and informal. Team was the natural progression from rec. Almost everyone would outgrow the rec program within a year to two. My dd started in rec when she was 6 and moved to level 4 team 6 months later.

In our new gym, I'm not even sure how it works because both my kids went straight onto team. I know there are invitation only developmental classes. There are try outs for team, and I think the kids need to be invited to try out. There are various developmental and advanced rec classes that can be invited to try out though I think.
Our gym is unique, I think, most kids start in the toddler groups and then either progress into team or rec. The lowest levels before team are part of the toddler division. For example, my girls (who were L2) were in the 4 year old group last year. Right now, they are in L3 which is the first team or rec level. Very few kids start in one track and switch to the other, but that is more because of the small size of both programs, I think. Our coach is very strict with keeping to the age limits, only moving kids up when they are really ready, and, since classes are so small, the kids get tons of individualized instruction. I doubt our gym will ever produce an olympic gold medalist, but I think the instruction is very good and keeps the kids interested.
DD has only gone to one gym, she started at 3 in a preschool program but then wanted to do competitive cheer with her big sister. She did 2 years of Tiny Level 1 & 2 divisions (3-5yo). She had a problem with the standing around and got bored fast, most of the time she would spend climbing the mats. She wanted to go back to gymnastics so we went back to the gym she went to for preschool class in March (?) of this year.
Did level 1 for 16 weeks, moved to level 2 for 8 weeks and then was put on "developmental preteam", they start to learn the level 4 routines but are there less hours. They have talked to me about possibly moving her to "big girl preteam" (that's what I call it, its the girls that will compete level 4 in January) and letting her compete Level 4, she would be 7 for her 1st meet.

I have seen her progress much faster in the team track then the rec program, they spend more time on strength and flexability.

my girls were rec first I love the preteam more than anything is the "team" atmosphere for them, they are striving socially and self esteem. I see the way
they have formed such great friendships etc.
My dd started i beleive around 3 did mommy and me,preschool,rec 1,2,3and was asked to join the L2 team 6 1/2 she is now 8 L4 defintly huge difference between rec and knew nothing about team prior had no idea they started at such a basic level for team I was going to wait til she was 9 or so before put her in team .But glad I did not I think 8years old at L 4 is a very appropiate age
My DD started in the rec program at age 3, went to pre-team at age 5 and onto the team at age 6. While most of our girls came from our rec programs, some came from other gyms (and maybe rec programs), and one older girls came over from another sport, tried JOGA and was so good she was recomended to the USAG team instead. I think some coaches can just "spot" them. But most gyms use the rec programs to build their team. Some start at age 3 like my DD and some start rec a little older (age 7, 8 or 9) and still manage to get onto the team. I think it depends on the child.
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