Anybody competing hearing impaired gymnasts?

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E

emacmommy

We have the potential to start competing a little compulsory developmental level gymnast who is hearing impaired. Does anybody know the leeway given as to being able to keep rhythm/tempo with music or how to communicate warning and time on beam.

She isn't competing yet, but if we have to jump through any special hoops to get her to do the routines kinda with the music then we would like to start preparing her now with 8-counts and such. Problem with our lovely compulsory musics is they don't keep a consistent tempo through the entire routine.

Any hints/tips appreciated!
 
There are MANY different levels of hearing impairment from profoundly deaf to mild hearing loss. So it really depends on this child's hearing ablilty as to what help she may need. But we do have an AMAZING gymnast that used to post here on CB. She is deaf(severely hearing impaired if I remember correctly) & I believe a L10 or maybe in college by now. Does anyone remember that member's name? She posted her whole, VERY insprational story once. If someone can remember her name maybe you could PM her. She would be a WONDERFUL resource & inspiration for you & your gymnast. Good luck to the child in your program!!!
 
Bribri514! Check her posts. You may also want to try doing a search here on CB, for the word "deaf" in all threads or posts. I know this topic has come up before & I've seen very insprational stories & videos posted on here.
 
I would Look up info on Aimee Walker-Pond. She was completly deaf, and blind in one eye. She played herself in the movie Little girls in pretty boxes. She competed in level 10/college.
 
YouTube - Deaf gymnast Aimee Walker Pond

You can get accomodations for disabilities. In this case at a lower level, I might not worry about something like warning time for beam. I would think trying to figure out a way to do a further signal could probably end up throwing her off more than the relatively small overtime deduction, if she is looking around or something. It depends on the child of course, but in general I'd keep things simple.

I'd echo that it depends on her hearing loss, and also her ability to follow music. Some deaf people can actually follow music really well by feeling the beat essentially. But I agree the compulsory music, it would be pretty hard to establish that. On floor I would think you could do something with signals. Maybe like a "how many seconds pause" count by holding up fingers (and taking them down) and a "go" motion. You may even be able to get permission to touch her lightly, say before the RO BHS.

I've seen a deaf dance performance group called the Wild Zappers. There are some videos on youtube.
 
I remember a girl competing at a worlds in the late 80s who had barely any hearing - I think she was on the German team?? They turned her music up loud enough for her to 'feel' the beat. She was really good.
PS: Good luck to your DD.
 
I know in high school gymnastics they can hold up a flag to signal warning and overtime on beam for hearing impaired gymnast. I assume USAG would make such modifications, although I don't think there is anything in the code about it.

I might contact your state director with specific questions.
 
She competed at BYU in Utah and did amazing. People would hold out there hands as a way to show her they were clapping for her!
 
Thank you all.

I guess I could have been more specific with how much hearing loss. She uses a cochlear implant device, but needs to wear a "fanny pack" when in use. She takes it off for bars and it's cumbersome for rolls and bridge work on floor. When she doesn't use the implant device she is 100% deaf, to my knowledge, and we rely on eye to eye contact so she can read our lips for her corrections.

We do teach our girls to ignore warning on beam unless they are to the quality where one tenth is making the difference between first and third. I have a few there at each level. It was more a curiosity as to what is allowed.

Again, thank you for your answers.
 
Thank you all.

I guess I could have been more specific with how much hearing loss. She uses a cochlear implant device, but needs to wear a "fanny pack" when in use. She takes it off for bars and it's cumbersome for rolls and bridge work on floor. When she doesn't use the implant device she is 100% deaf, to my knowledge, and we rely on eye to eye contact so she can read our lips for her corrections.

We do teach our girls to ignore warning on beam unless they are to the quality where one tenth is making the difference between first and third. I have a few there at each level. It was more a curiosity as to what is allowed.

Again, thank you for your answers.
hi emacmommy! i'm bri (the poster that was mentioned earlier). sorry i've been mia, i'm a freshman in college now and it takes up a lot more time than i thought!

i've been profoundly deaf since i was born and use asl to communicate. i've never had a CI but i've had hearing aids on and off. i remove them for gym b/c the chalk and sweat and landing for them is bad. does the gymnast sign? or just read lips.

for special arrangements instead of a buzzer i get a flag. i also get a physical signal to when my floor music starts. i train with it very loud, simple beat music, but it's not as loud at meets and i can't feel it so i just have to train a lot of floor. (luckily i'm a little more into tumbling than graceful dance for floor)

maybe this will help? www.qld.deafbasketball.org.au/_uploads/res/545_40006.doc

if you have any more questions at !!! i'd love to chat more!!

(and everyone else, i'm glad to be back!!! i've missed you!!)
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Hey Bri great to see you here. Thanks for coming in on this one. Hope school is going well.

I removed your email addy from your post as the spam bots pick them up off our site and send all sorts of horrible spam that you can never get rid of. I will pm your addy to the OP. She is a long time member.
 
Hello Bri!!! I knew you'd be able to help this poster out with great advice & insight! So glad you found this thread! :D Good to have you posting again! How is college going???
 
We had a girl who was on my daughter's level 4 team who was hearing impaired. She didn't receive any special accomodations that I know of. I do know that she struggled a lot on beam, and hence was never allowed to compete on that event.

She also did gymnastics with the special olympics outside of our club, and was successful with that.
 
I think Bri can probably provide the best advice, being an expert on the topic and all :)

One thing I will say is that (assuming you are in the USA) I think they have to at least try to compensate for the hearing impairment by making "reasonable accommodations", if you ask for them. That is a Federal requirement under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Asking someone to re-write all the rules isn't reasonable accommodation, but requesting a flag instead of a buzzer should be.

The post above mine kind of makes me sad, because I would hope some sort of accommodation could be worked out so that the girl could compete.
 

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