Not Ready for Competition Next Month (Level 3)

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My 5 year old daughter has her first meet at level 3 next month. She does not know her beam routine or her floor routine. In fact they haven't even heard the music.We have had some coaches leave for college so we are short on coaches but they do their best. Our gym is very low key on level 3. I really don't care how she scores at level 3 but I don't want her to be frustrated either. She has all of her skills but should I try to schedule a couple of privates so that she can learn her routines? I am sure some of the older level 3's will pick the routines up easily but she is so young that I feel she might need more time. I don't want her to go to a competition and feel like she was lost. What do you think? She is in the gym 5 hours a week now but they spend almost no time learning routines.
Does she HAVE to compete? If she was mine I think I would just decide that this first meet is not for her and take her to go and cheer the team on so she can see what it is all about.

I wouldn't bother with privates, save that money for down the road when gym starts to get really expensive.

I can guarantee that missing one meet will not affect her future in gym, but having a bad first meet is not a fun experience for anyone involved.
Don't worry. I would not have her skip the meet, nor would I pay for privates. Let her go and gain the experience and have fun. IMO fun is what level 3 is all about. It's not the olympic trials, your daughter is 5. Don't stress it and she won't either.
Have you expressed your concerns to anyone at her gym yet? I really think you need to just tell her HC exactly what you've told us. I wouldn't waste money on privates at this point. As Bog, said if she really is not prepared & it will traumatize her, maybe you should ask to skip it.

But on the other hand maybe she is more prepared then you realize. Maybe they are just working bits of the routines & just haven't put it all together yet. She may know all of the 'bits' perfectly. That's were talking to her HC comes in. Trying to remember that far back;), our gym started competeing at L4. I had NO clue what so ever if my DD had the skills she needed for that 1st meet. I was TOTALLY clueless!!!! I just trusted her coaches. Ahh, ignorance can be bliss:rolleyes:. DD did a fine job!!!! Not 1st AA...but if you ask her today she will still tell you that was one of her "funnest" meets & what got her "hooked":D! She loved finally performing in front of a crowd...even though she made up her own moves, LOL!!! It was adorable!!!! I hope every gymnasts & parent has such fond memories to look back on:D!

So find out if they think this meet will be a "good experience" for her. That's what really matters. As long as she has the right attitude (even if she forgets part of a routine or whatever) it can still all be good:D! Some of our best gymnastics memories come from meets like that:D! L3 should be FUN!!!!!
I agree to a certain point with GymGirlsMom and gymjourney. Our Level 3 starts off very low key. We aren't too concerned if we have to tell them what comes next in a routine, help them with a skill or two. It's about going out there and having fun and finding out what it's all about. She's five and more than likely if the coach and the parents are happy and enthusiastic she won't know the difference of whether she was spot on or not. She's just gonna be so hyped to show off what she can do, earn a medal or so, have people smiling and clapping, put on that team leo with super cute hair, etc. Our gym calls that "getting them hooked." Through this experience the understanding of what practice is all about usually seems to kick in quick too. "Ah, we work hard and the coach gets picky with us so we can do better at meets." I find practices become easier for girls to follow along with after they have their first meet.

Now, don't get me wrong, we do everything we can to make sure they are successful at a first meet, know the routines and even have a little mock meet within practice for first timers so they know about the saluting, the waiting, etc. In reality though, I usually have three or so that we have to coach along in the routines and we smile, clap and hug just the same.

She won't stress if you and the coaches don't stress.
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I also agree that she might know more of her routines that either you or her know. My DD is also competing level 3 (first meet in Nov) and appears to me to not know her beam and floor routines. The other day I put on the video clip form the USAG site with the Level 3 floor routine for her and she said they are practicing all of it in pieces- she hasn't done it to the floor music yet. It will be put together to music soon. The beam routine she also knows in pieces and as far as bars go her whole team is on perfecting the mill circle and dismount- again not connected yet. Hang in there and try to at least give the coaches the benefit of the doubt that it will all come together for the meet.
Hmmm. I wouldn't worry much about the beam routine - the L3 beam is pretty straightforward. It's basically skill, skill, skill.

Floor's a bit more complex obviously with having to go to the music. It's still not like the L5 routine or anything, or even as complex as L4 (which is pretty straightforward). If they start it like, right now, then I would guess they could probably get it down decently, but I wonder when they plan to start.

Honestly...these routines aren't that difficult. If you think your daughter would be bothered by not being prepared I would just show them to her on youtube now...just make sure it's a USAG competition, because AAU might have a change or two (maybe not to floor).
I agree that I wouldn't worry about it too much. The level 3 routines aren't very difficult. It's just a matter of putting the skills they are learning in the correct sequence.

If it helps any, the first year my dd's competed they were level 4 and the coach wasn't told when the first meet was until 2 weeks prior. The girls had been working on the skills but they hadn't run any rountines. The team started working on the routines but 2 weeks only meant 6 practices. They didn't even get to use the floor during 2 of those practices because the cheer team needed it. By the time the meet arrived they were excited and knew what to do. The first event began and nerves kicked in. The first girl on the beam forgot her routine and that created a domino effect and they all forgot it. Never fear, the coach helped them though it. The scores weren't great but the girls didn't really notice the scores. The rest of the meet got better and their routines weren't beautiful but the girls were all excited and most of them got at least 1 medal. They had a blast. By the end of the season, the team looked great and all of them made it to states.
I don't know if it'll be the same for yours, but ours were given the option on the floor of music or no music. That way if they are already comfortable doing the routine to the music it would go smoother and if not, it wouldn't be rushed if they need to be talked through it a little.

We were certainly nervous at our first level 3 meet as well, but it turned out just fine. Maybe your gym will do a mock meet beforehand just to get the girls acclimated with it? That sure helped our girls.

Good luck! :D
honestly last year, pretty much the entire meet season we had girls go out and compete not knowing or more like not remembering their routines, many of these girls had never competed and they knew them in practice but nerves hit and guess what. I talked many a kid through their entire floor routine, the kids who got talked through the routine even if the skills were done correctly scored in the 7's. it is a big deduction, but I looked at the other teams and we were not the only ones having that issue and they way our awards go it is placed out 50% plus 1 and 100% get an all around medal, which I do not like for the older ones, but kids just starting it is a confidence booster. The scores flash for a fraction of a second and the kids are busy watching their teammates so they don't even catch it all they know is they got a medal and Mom/Dad/Coach is proud. I guess this would be a big issue if your dd is really sensitive and realizes she didn't do great or if your awards are harsher and she gets nothing. I'd say let her do it, it is only the first meet of the season the only place to go from here is up and she can get the feel of competing and hopefully it will bring with it something positive even if it is her realizing she needs to work harder at practice. Good luck and enjoy the ride!
I am sure she knows bits and pieces of the floor and beam routine but they haven't worked on putting it together or to music. She has known her bar routine for quite some time so she should be comfortable with that. It seems like our gym is more concerned with doing every skill perfectly than worried about routines or scores. (For example, my dd has to hold her level 3 handstand at vertical and then come down instead of just tapping at 3/4.)I was just wondering if this is common. I guess I will just trust the process for now and talk to her coach about it next practice.
The L3 floor and beam routines are quite short and should not be difficult for the girls to learn. If you're concerned, just ask her coach how she thinks dd is doing regarding learning her floor and beam routines.

Honestly at this level I would be happy to see they are asking the girls to do more than is required. Learning to hold the handstand won't get any extra bonus at L3, but will set the groundwork nicely for L5.
I remember DD's first competition, she was six, driving to the gym she announces that she "doesn't know what is in the beam routine" and then asks if I do? I had absolutely no idea. It worked out okay though, the routines are short, she asked an older team mate who rattled off the skills in order. The practice run through first helps. Honestly she was just so excited to be actually competing, she either didn't realise or didn't focus on what she forgot or skills she didn't quite get.

Sometimes even when the routines have been learned perfectly and practiced for months, nerves kick in and they are still forgotten. DS who is 10 did beautifully on the high bar at his last comp, probably the best I have ever seen him do, but unfortunately he only did HALF of the routine, just totally omitted a bit in the middle and didn't even realise till the next gymnast hopped up. Didn't really bother him much, sometimes things just go wrong in a comp.

Some gymnasts compete better than they do in training, I know there have been times when I have wondered if ds or dd was really ready for a comp and on the day it all comes together and they do much better than I was expecting.
If you are concerned I would have an informal chat to her coach and then just enjoy the ride. Really the first meet is all about the leo and the glitter.
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I am sure she knows bits and pieces of the floor and beam routine but they haven't worked on putting it together or to music. She has known her bar routine for quite some time so she should be comfortable with that. It seems like our gym is more concerned with doing every skill perfectly than worried about routines or scores. (For example, my dd has to hold her level 3 handstand at vertical and then come down instead of just tapping at 3/4.)I was just wondering if this is common. I guess I will just trust the process for now and talk to her coach about it next practice.
I think this sounds like they are a gym that believes it learning the basics properly to start with...which I think is a GOOD thing(you can refer to any one of the recent threads for more on this topic;))! Like other posters stated, I think she'll probably take her ques from you & her coaches. If you are happy & excited & tell her she did a "GREAT JOB", I think she'll be proud of her performance no matter what. And that is how it should be in L3 at 5yrs old, IMHO. Just going out there in front of a crowd of people & doing anything IS genuinely something to be proud of:D!

Have a chat with her coaches & see if they are planning a mock meet. I think THAT might ease your stess a bit. And it would familarize her with the meet process & hopefully make her more comfortable too.

Ask the coach if they have any concerns about her competeing & let us know what they tell you. I really think her 1st L3 meet at 5yrs old should be all about showing off her leo, her hair & her SMILE:D! If she hits some good routines that's just icing on the cake! But I wouldn't stress her or yourself about it. They only have one 1st meet experience, so soak it ALL in! This is only the beginning of a long & winding road! ENJOY!!!!:D
My DD prefers the glitter from Claire's- it's a powder you can sprinkle on them-- OUTSIDE!!! And then YOU take a shower- haha.

Also, a lot of kids use the spray on kind- I think you can get it at Claire's too- our gym even sells it :)

DD prefers the powder stuff- she thinks it's more sparkly

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