For Parents Would you force your kid to miss part of practice?

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ReluctantGymMom

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May 11, 2020
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Okay so hear me out:

Her gym is very flexible with time, because most of optionals is still in elementary and can’t get early release. Everyone tries to get there as close to on time as possible.

Her school offers many after school clubs that she obviously can’t attend. BUT there’s a pottery and sculpting studio coming to do a 5 week session, on wednesdays - an early release day for us, and a day with a super weird schedule at the gym so it wouldn’t be an issue if she arrived late. It’s 5 practices total, she’d be an hour and 15 min late.

She LOVES pottery and sculpting. She absolutely loves art. At first she said she’d think about it, and then when I asked her again she said no, she isn’t interested.

At what point do you force your child to do some kind of life besides gymnastics, especially if it’s something you know they love??? I know it probably sounds crazy but she’s seriously not experiencing anything besides 20 hours a week at the gym plus a crap ton of homework
 

MuggleMom

Proud Parent
Dec 22, 2016
809
Virginia
Thats a tough one....you want to have her some agency in her decisions here but I do think forcing some other opportunities is sometimes needed. If it were during meet season I would prob let her make the call if its off season I would probably have her do the pottery class.

Also maybe ask her/the coach what part of practice she is missing, is it conditioning or an event she is strong on? Missing would be easier. Is it an event she is struggling with an needs the extra practice? Maybe going would be better. I would also talk to her about why the answer for her is "no" is there something she is worried about missing in gym? Did they talk about the class at school and after hearing more about it its not what she thought it would be and is not as interested? Is there anything you/the coach can do to help her feel better about missing?

Good luck its a tough call.
 

PreciousJ

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Feb 16, 2021
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Could her response be because she's worried about disappointing her teammates or coach by missing part of practice? Or is she thinking you'd be disappointed with her missing practice, especially because she already misses some time?

This sounds like such a fun and awesome opportunity for her, though! Is this something she could explore further during down time/summer?
 

ReluctantGymMom

Proud Parent
May 11, 2020
323
32
Could her response be because she's worried about disappointing her teammates or coach by missing part of practice? Or is she thinking you'd be disappointed with her missing practice, especially because she already misses some time?

This sounds like such a fun and awesome opportunity for her, though! Is this something she could explore further during down time/summer?
I work at the front desk half the week and she’s there earlier than about a 1/3rd of her level, so she knows I feel she has wiggle room - I’d def just work out with her coach to let her stay an extra hour on Wednesday with the upper optionals (not unusual if you run super late) and since it’s literally just FIVE practices total, and it’s not even missing the whole practice I’m like cooooome on.

Last summer it didn’t work out with her gym schedule, but she normally does a ton of art camps, because that’s her thing :(

It is meet season, but there’s not many left. I just don’t want her to say no to things when really she wants to do them
 

rlm's mom

Proud Parent
Aug 21, 2021
308
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She needs some activites outside of gymnastics. I would strongly recommend her to take on this activity. It helps that it's only temporary - 5 weeks. You can find out what she would be missing in the gym and she can try to make it up another time if she wants.
 

Carly

Proud Parent
Jan 3, 2016
292
I wouldn't force my kid to do it but I would very strongly encourage it. What harm is it for a few missed practices? My dd almost quit gymnastics a few years ago but found a much better fit in Xcel at a new gym. I am so glad that we took those longer vacations in the summer even and let her miss practices for certain activities when she was in JO doing high hours because you can never get that time back.
 
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PreciousJ

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Feb 16, 2021
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I work at the front desk half the week and she’s there earlier than about a 1/3rd of her level, so she knows I feel she has wiggle room - I’d def just work out with her coach to let her stay an extra hour on Wednesday with the upper optionals (not unusual if you run super late) and since it’s literally just FIVE practices total, and it’s not even missing the whole practice I’m like cooooome on.

Last summer it didn’t work out with her gym schedule, but she normally does a ton of art camps, because that’s her thing :(

It is meet season, but there’s not many left. I just don’t want her to say no to things when really she wants to do them
Thank you for the clarification - IMO she should totally do it, then! My DD is also into art so I get it. Heck, I also did sculpture and ceramics in school and college and honestly loved it. Encourage her to have a little non-gym fun time. Frame it as a way for her to make some memories outside of the gym. :)
 

ReluctantGymMom

Proud Parent
May 11, 2020
323
32
I wouldn't force my kid to do it but I would very strongly encourage it. What harm is it for a few missed practices? My dd almost quit gymnastics a few years ago but found a much better fit in Xcel at a new gym. I am so glad that we took those longer vacations in the summer even and let her miss practices for certain activities when she was in JO doing high hours because you can never get that time back.
That’s where I’m struggling - I don’t want to “force” her, because forcing anything is still forcing, whether I think she’ll like it or not. But it’s like I KNOW she would want to do this!
 

gymgal

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Aug 22, 2008
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I forget her age from previous posts. If she's under 9, I would likely sign her up and tell her she's going. That 9-13 range, I would try to figure out why she doesn't want to go and help move those obstacles if possible but ultimately let her decide. Obstacles - The thought of 3 activities in one day, even if it is just for 5 weeks, but in the middle of season; not really interested in it as much as she has been in the past, cost to the family, etc. If she is 14+, I would let her decide fully
 

Pirouette

Proud Parent
Oct 16, 2014
222
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Art is creative, right? Doing art allows us to express and strengthen our creative, artistic skills. Creative, artistic gymnasts are more expressive on floor and beam, right? Maybe spin it that way and remind her that she will not be hurting herself as a gymnast, but in fact, may actually be helping herself. :)
 
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