Anon Age groups at competition

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Anonymous (e5c8)

I’m fairly new to this world and I have a question. A “would you say something” situation. Or just a rant situation, I guess. My daughter competed yesterday. Her level was split into 5 groups. She is in the youngest group. There were two girls who completely dominated the group. Both from the same gym, medaled in every event and their all around scores were much higher than the next one (third place). My daughter also did well, scored higher than her last competition but placed lower.

I started to wonder if they were at our last competition so I pulled up the results. The last competition had 6 groups within their level and the two girls were two and three age groups higher than my daughter there. I know the cut off for groups can change from one competition to the next but I also know the ages of everyone on my daughter’s team. At both competitions, her team has been split between the youngest two age groups. Two girls in the second youngest and the rest in the youngest group. The two girls from the other gym were not in either of those groups at the last competition but jumped down to the youngest group this time. So it makes it look like they were older than everyone in our group at the last competition but are now younger than two of our girls. Doesn’t seem to make sense.

What would you do? It’s frustrating but I’m inclined to ignore. It doesn’t really make much difference in the compulsory levels does it? They did push my daughter out of the medals on two events and the all around but my daughter doesn’t really care. I should just let it go, right?
 
Eh, I’d just let it go. Sometimes you win the age group lottery, sometimes you lose. And usually it’s the younger ones scoring higher anyway.

Unless they mess up age groups for western/eastern/national qualifiers at level 9/10 it really doesn’t matter at all.
 
Are you competing USAG? If so, the athletes are all registered for meets by their USAG membership ID number which is attached to their date of birth. There's not a way to just change it around meet to meet. On rare occasions, a birth date will get entered wrong in the membership application and it can mess things up - I've seen it before. I've also seen people end up with weird names because they got entered wrong originally and now they're stuck being Jane Smith Smith at every meet. If it's not USAG, then I'm not sure how it works. There may have been some kind of error honestly.
 
What would you do? It’s frustrating but I’m inclined to ignore. It doesn’t really make much difference in the compulsory levels does it? They did push my daughter out of the medals on two events and the all around but my daughter doesn’t really care. I should just let it go, right?

Yes you ignore. Age groups are really interesting. Last year as a bronze my DD lucked out allot at jr A being on the older end of that bracket to her benefit. This year as a level 3 she usually is at Jr B and placing really well, if she was in Jr A she wouldn't see the podium.
 
It is possible that their birthdays were entered wrong in the system and then corrected (especially since it was two girls on the same team). Could be that they had to compete in a particular session (but then they should not have been eligible for awards, so that would be weird). Regardless, age usually does not make a huge difference in scores and placements within a a few age groups in general. It is more likely the result of their gym's training philosophy.

Best to let it go. It will not make a bit of difference in the long run. If your dd stays with gymnastics, she will have so many medals she won't know what to do with them. Scores and progressions/improvements matter much more than placements in terms of moving up the levels.
 
Are you competing USAG? If so, the athletes are all registered for meets by their USAG membership ID number which is attached to their date of birth. There's not a way to just change it around meet to meet. On rare occasions, a birth date will get entered wrong in the membership application and it can mess things up - I've seen it before. I've also seen people end up with weird names because they got entered wrong originally and now they're stuck being Jane Smith Smith at every meet. If it's not USAG, then I'm not sure how it works. There may have been some kind of error honestly.

We’re in Canada so no. I’m pretty sure the gym sends the information with each competition registration. I’m pretty sure of that because there was a mistake with one of our own girls at one competition. Her birthday was put in with the wrong year. She didn’t win a bunch of medals though so no one really cared.
 
I’m fairly new to this world and I have a question. A “would you say something” situation. Or just a rant situation, I guess. My daughter competed yesterday. Her level was split into 5 groups. She is in the youngest group. There were two girls who completely dominated the group. Both from the same gym, medaled in every event and their all around scores were much higher than the next one (third place). My daughter also did well, scored higher than her last competition but placed lower.

I started to wonder if they were at our last competition so I pulled up the results. The last competition had 6 groups within their level and the two girls were two and three age groups higher than my daughter there. I know the cut off for groups can change from one competition to the next but I also know the ages of everyone on my daughter’s team. At both competitions, her team has been split between the youngest two age groups. Two girls in the second youngest and the rest in the youngest group. The two girls from the other gym were not in either of those groups at the last competition but jumped down to the youngest group this time. So it makes it look like they were older than everyone in our group at the last competition but are now younger than two of our girls. Doesn’t seem to make sense.

What would you do? It’s frustrating but I’m inclined to ignore. It doesn’t really make much difference in the compulsory levels does it? They did push my daughter out of the medals on two events and the all around but my daughter doesn’t really care. I should just let it go, right?
Age groups are luck of the draw. My kid has been a State Champion twice because she was the only one in her age group. She also once missed placing on Vault at Regionals because she was placed in a younger age group and the next higher one had lower Vault scores. So it really goes both ways. The groups are just a way to ensure that more kids get medals.
 
Age groups are luck of the draw. My kid has been a State Champion twice because she was the only one in her age group.
I didn't realize states had pre-selected age groups like 9/10 nationals. I thought all states divided age groups evenly among the competitors. DD's state meets always had roughly the same number of girls in every age group between 15-25, depending on the level
 
What province are you in?

We’re in Ontario. Both my sons are gymnasts. Their age groupings for awards at qualifiers can be 20+ boys. Age groups quickly evolve into U13 (which for my boys means they’re 11 or under for the comps because of age cutoffs), and 13+ (one year my pre-pubescent 12 year old was competing against grown men who were 18). There are some boys who walk out with no medals / ribbons at all. In our MAG system, start values can range substantially between the boys based on the skills they compete. It’s not uncommon for an event winning score to be higher than most other boys’ start values. And when you’re, say, 15+, you can physically do much harder MAG skills than a 12 year old.

I’ve noticed that qualifiers for the WAG athletes tend to have much smaller groups for awards (usually 10 or fewer girls). Sometimes they group several birth years together, but I’ve never seen the span that we get in MAG. And of course, the start values are tightly bunched.

We (as parents) and our sons’ coach focus on execution scores rather than placement / awards. Sometimes the “win” is competing a new skill or sequence cleanly. Or it’s hitting 6/6 routines. Depends on the kid and their goal at that time.

All this to say, I’d let it go. Sometimes luck is on your side with age groups, and sometimes it isn’t. As kids get older, the medals and ribbons become less important to them than their personal progress. Honestly, that’s the only way to stay in this sport.
 
I didn't realize states had pre-selected age groups like 9/10 nationals. I thought all states divided age groups evenly among the competitors. DD's state meets always had roughly the same number of girls in every age group between 15-25, depending on the level
Ours does, I don't know about other states. We're a small state too, so sometimes it just happens...
 
Try to just ignore it, it depends on how many kids are in her session and how old they all are. In other competitions she might be in a higher age group. When It was my first year, I was always In the smaller age groups.
 
Also Canadian, and unlike the boys programs the WAG in our province gets to choose their age divisions each meet. So one time you may have five years together and the next it may be only one. And to echo the OP's later comment, yes, it isn't part of a national database, each coach submits their athletes' information, so errors are more likely I suppose.

What grinds my gears a bit though is when a meet switches a child from one group to another prior to the awards, where they had been listed in the program as being part of another group. This bumped my DD off of the podium, I don't normally care about that as much but she really could have used the moral boost that meet. I'm sure that it was a situation where the birthdate was recorded wrong, but it still was annoying.
 

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