Terrible coaching or not?

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You have gotten great advice....now somthing that may help her deal with the fear is learning to have a tight mind.

My DD is doing a online class with Doc Ali at headgames.com she has great articles for athlete and coach. She also does a great web-camp for all types of athletes. Her work is life skills not only gym related.


Sorry for the shameless plug but she is doing wonders for gymnasts.
 
Another good sport to try is diving :) I'm having luck with it so far. I also had a fear of back walkovers--my coaches weren't like this but they sometimes made me stay on beam a while... but they never ignored me; that's just scary! I hope she doesn't have to quit, but if the owners know what's going on, hopefully they'll whip the coach into shape!
 
It's not just bad coaching it is child abuse!
See what happens next time- see if they have taken your comments on board.If not i would put a compaint in writing.I am in a different country so I'm not sure whether clubs where you are need to have a Welfare Officer? If not write to the owner.
It is absolutely Not on and your child needs to see that bullying is not tolerated.this is why many women don't have the confidence to walk away from abusive relationships.
 
It's not just bad coaching it is child abuse!
See what happens next time- see if they have taken your comments on board.If not i would put a compaint in writing.I am in a different country so I'm not sure whether clubs where you are need to have a Welfare Officer? If not write to the owner.
It is absolutely Not on and your child needs to see that bullying is not tolerated.this is why many women don't have the confidence to walk away from abusive relationships.

I know what country you are in, just by what you say. Clubs in the US are not governed at all. NO health and safety inspections, no welfare officers no compulsory coach training, no necessary background checks etc etc. WHich is why this kind of thing happens a lot, the wrong kind of people get attracted to the sport and kids suffer. Also all coaches in the US are paid, volunteer coaches do not exist.

Parents get sucked into the gymnastics life and allow things to happen to their kids that are totally unacceptable. Kids sports attract some of the most awesome coaches, but sadly they attract some of the most heinous individuals too. It remains the parents job to watch what is going on.

Leaving is the only answer, bully's always bully. Unless of course the coach gets fired.
 
Bog, this type of behavior by an adult can be reported to social services or whatever agency investigates child abuse and it doesn't have to be done by the parent of the child. I do know about an instance in our area of social services being contacted because a parent slapped her child after a poor practice and the coach was yelling profanities(not gymnastics)----it wasn't the 1st time this had happened and a parent did report it and it was investigated.
 
Bog, this type of behavior by an adult can be reported to social services or whatever agency investigates child abuse and it doesn't have to be done by the parent of the child. I do know about an instance in our area of social services being contacted because a parent slapped her child after a poor practice and the coach was yelling profanities(not gymnastics)----it wasn't the 1st time this had happened and a parent did report it and it was investigated.


I think this is exactly what parents should do, before walking out of the door. At least social services have the power to call in law enforcement etc. Plus it would create a paper trail with the abusers name on.
 
First, Bog- I volunteer a lot. I volunteered before I got paid to coach, and I volunteer even after my regular working hours. We do exist, and we do it out of love for the sport and the success of those we coach.

Second - we are only getting one side of a story, and we also need to consider many other aspects of the story. I leave kids to work on things independently all the time. Sometimes, an hour is needed to feel out what they are doing, and put it all together. That little bit of push goes a long way. We also don't know how many other athletes are in the gym, or how many coaches. If I am all alone, and it was expected that someone do a skill - they are expected to do it. I teach progressions for a reason, and it's not because it's easier for me. She needs to take it upon herself to do the drills that helped her in the first place, and do them! 3 hours is plenty of time to figure it out.

I know I'm gonna get hated for this, and I know it may be percieved as a "bad reflection" on me, but here goes - your child is in a sport based solely on someone's aestetic and personal tastes. They are bombarded with people looking at them, judging them, telling them everything they do wrong instead of right... kids need to learn to take punches, especially in a sport like this. It is a life skill, if you ask me. If they can't do a skill they have been performing for a year, under a little pressure from their coach - how are they going to do it with a lot of pressure with thousands of eyes watching them? How will they overcome fear at their frist job interview and the interviewer makes them uncomfortable or asks questions that they felt unprepared for? I appreciate the straight forwardness of my coaches, and I appreciate how hard it was. I didn't mind being left alone or "ignored" because I got the chance to move myself forward, and I draw upon a lot of those skills now.

Am I defending the coach? A little. I personally try to encourage growth through success. It's not always possible.

Some athletes, however, need some added pressure - that sense of "I NEED TO DO THIS!" In fact, I would argue that all serious gymnasts, who plan to compete over a long period of time, NEED this.

It's one thing if the coach put some mats on a beam, said "do a flip flop" for the first time, and just walked away. Im assuming there was development, drills, and lead up to this point. The coach is doing what they know how to do to mentally prepare the child. It may have been how they were taught, it may be the way they were raised - whatever it is, it is their method.

You have the right to leave if you don't agree with it. By all means, speak up and say something if you don't like it. But don't be suprised when nothing changes.

What it comes down to - if your child wants to continue, they will find a way to cope and succeed. If there is no physical abuse going on, I see nothing wrong with a little verbal assault (within reason - you didn't say how they were being insulted. If a string of foul words rang across the gym, it's one thing - but if it's "you expect to be level 6 AA champ not doing a BWO? I guess not..." *shrug*)

Life is full of hard knocks. Get back up.
 
My daughter has been doing backwalkovers while training for level 6 for a year or more. She has suddenly developed a fear. A big fear. The way her coaches are dealing with it is leaving her on the beam for hours, last night three hours, the whole practice. They would yell at her, humiliate her and when they were not doing that ignoring her. I am asking any coaches out there how they would handle this. Because their method is not working, if anything it has gotten worse. My daughter was the state AA champion last year at level 5. She has a great work ethic but her coaches have almost pushed her out of the gym. It is a shame really.

i thought it would be helpful to repost the original post...:)
 
Thanks Dunno, I was wondering if Ryan got so caught up in his post that he neglected to read exactly how long this very small child was being left alone on a high beam and yelled at. I just cannot find any okay on the post and I cannot come to the conclusion that "we only know one side of the story". The coach is an abusive *** and needs to be no longer coaching.

Ryan, I love that you volunteer, wonderful for the kids who benefit.
 
I will admit, I often write long posts like this past one and hit delete after because it differs wildly from the popular opinion. I try to see both sides and be diplomatic to the issue. In this instance, I felt I had to speak up. If you feel like you need to ignore me, that's fine. I said outright that the point of view would be looked down upon.

*shrug* I said my peace. Is it extreme? Yes. To the coach, however, it may be their way of valuation and seeing who is worth giving the attention to. When you're the only gym for 100 miles, it's not like you have to be picky.

Like I said - I support bringing up the issue with the coach. I do not think a single thing will change. I would be more inclined to look at injury rates in the gym than this tactic for "teaching." If the kids are safe and developmentally sound, then the coaches attitude by far comes second. At this point, it's the parent's responsibility to either teach thieir child to cope with different personalities, or remove them and shelter them from it.
 
Okay, let's just all take a breath here. I don't think Ryan is saying he would verbally abuse a kid. I think he's saying he's in favor of a little tough love. I'm not opposed to that, either, but I don't think that's what's happening in the poster's situation. I think her daughter's situation has escalated to something that is beyond "toughen up." If you go back and reread my post, I'm all about treating kids with respect and I believe that yelling = uneducated/frustrated coach. However, I see where Ryan is coming from. If I had a kid who wasn't taking responsibility for herself, I would have moved on with the group and asked the kid to pull herself together independently. However, this would have been a one-practice deal. If it had continued, there would have been a parent/athlete meeting to talk through the issue and make a plan. So I agree Ryan- kids need to take responsibility for themselves, and pushing them when it's uncomfortable will help them become mentally tougher. No one can argue that mental fortitude is the building block of this sport (and often life in general!).
However, I believe what is happening in the poster's gym (from her description), is poor, uneducated coaching.
So let's agree that verbal abuse and neglect aren't something we advocate or would allow in our own gyms, wish the poster and her daughter the best of luck, and move on to another day.
Happy coaching. :)
 
There is a fine line between what the OP posted (abuse) and trying to get a child to unblock. At dd's cheer gym if a child has shown they can do a pass 100 times and then all of a sudden stop...they will get a earful from a coach. One of dd's friend's had progressed to a ROBHS tuck...out of nowhere she stopped throwing everything, she would only do a roundoff. Every time she did her pass and rebounded out of the RO the coach would say "Thank you for wasting my time..." and would send her back to the line to go again. Another athlete did toe touches until she would throw her BHS. But like I said these were all kids that had thrown these skills a 100 times before. I have never witnessed anything to the extreme the OP posted...
 
I just deleted a chunk of this thread. Those of you invoilved know why, if not PM me and I will spell it out. The OP wanted help with her situation.
 
Sorry I'm joining this thread rather late. For some reason the computer won't let me quote Ryantroop:

"...I would be more inclined to look at injury rates in the gym than this tactic for "teaching." If the kids are safe and developmentally sound, then the coaches attitude by far comes second. At this point, it's the parent's responsibility to either teach thieir child to cope with different personalities, or remove them and shelter them from it...".

I was going to say to the OP that I'd be taking this advice and looking around to see if her DD is the only one experiencing an emotional/psychological injury. If she is, perhaps there's hope that meetings/discussions might 'work'? If not, and it's commonplace in this gym for girls to be harmed, I'm afraid I'd withdraw my child from the sport if it was the only way I could keep her safe. IMHO she needs to learn to reject/report this sort of behaviour - whether it comes from coaches, teachers, boyfriends, whoever.

That's a really awful situation to be in - your DD will feel punished either way which really isn't fair. I'm crossing fingers for you!!
 
There is a fine line between what the OP posted (abuse) and trying to get a child to unblock. At dd's cheer gym if a child has shown they can do a pass 100 times and then all of a sudden stop...they will get a earful from a coach. One of dd's friend's had progressed to a ROBHS tuck...out of nowhere she stopped throwing everything, she would only do a roundoff. Every time she did her pass and rebounded out of the RO the coach would say "Thank you for wasting my time..." and would send her back to the line to go again. Another athlete did toe touches until she would throw her BHS. But like I said these were all kids that had thrown these skills a 100 times before. I have never witnessed anything to the extreme the OP posted...

Actually I don't think this is really quality or constructive coaching either (I realize it's just a snapshot and there are shades of gray). But what frustrates me is that I feel like the bar is so low for adults who are getting paid to do a job. And it really really bothers me that we can't expect a little more. I see so many rolled eyes and other nonsense from coaches. I'm sorry, but if you don't like your job and don't want to deal with stuff, then you're the adult in the situation, deal with it. I'm so sick of everyday being constant negativity about certain kids. And it's not over anything other than them not being able to do a gymnastics skill. I'm sorry but that is not grounds for treating the child with disrespect. If the child can't do it there is often a reason and this kind of thing just leads to quitting down the line when they can't face the constant negativity about everything. And when it's kids who aren't even in high school yet, don't even get me started. I could rage.

More coaches need to use common sense and realize that if a child fails to do something correctly two times in a row, they are not prepared to do it. And don't even tell me that you did drills before, because some kids are going to need more time and more ownership in the process. I've seen coaches turn their back on kids who are doing something 100 times DANGEROUSLY or WRONG. That is completely unacceptable and these adults should be ashamed of their lazy effort into their job. Even if the child isn't doing it wrong, the emotional damage can effect their performance by taking their mind away from a focused effort and even has physiological effects (like releasing stress hormones) that can make the athlete more prone to injury. Oftentimes if you back off for awhile on a skill you will see progress later. Having a kid stand on a beam and NOT GO is the worst thing you can do, because every second is another mental blow for her confidence in doing the skill. She needs to do what she CAN do until she can get up and go. I tell my kids to never even get on a high beam unless they KNOW they will perform whatever they are setting out to do. Otherwise is dangerous and poor practice. It's not just a random choice controlled by destiny of whether you go or not, you need to be planning and executing what you plan. This is an important life skill. I will always understand if they need more practice (and they may not like the practice exercises I assign and it may be physically harder than just performing the skill on the high beam) but I don't want to see people crying on the beam and not going, it serves no purpose.
 

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