My daughter is an 8 year old xcel gold. She has struggled with scores all year. She scores in the 9’s on one event but other events are in the 8’s and 7’s. She seems to always be the youngest or one of the youngest at every meet, sometimes looking like a baby among the other competitors. She is the youngest on her team with the next oldest being 10. She is struggling with not medaling when her ten year old friends get all the medals in her age group. She has come in last, next to last and always in the lower half of the age group for all around. Her scores have ranged from 31-34. Where we live the majority of xcel gold girls are not young and are easily 10 and up. Her team has 12-13 year olds on it. Her states age group this year had ten year olds in it. I’m trying to explain to her that the girls that she is competing against have been in gymnastics longer than her and that for her age she is doing really well, but I don’t think I’m getting through to her. She loves the challenge of harder skills more than getting medals but it’s still hard to see her get down on herself during meets for not winning. How do you keep an 8 year olds self esteem high when she starts to feel that she can’t compare to her older teammates? She has the ability to do the skills but just needs to refine them more to keep up with her teammates. I know that her body awareness isn’t going to be as good as a ten year old but how do I explain that to her. She gets very defensive when I try to talk to her about this. Thanks!