Top 7 tips for parents of gymnasts

Due to us having new team members join, we have compiled a few of our favorite articles into a Top 7 list to help our new parents, and a little helpful tool and reminder for our current parents, on how to help your child achieve the most out of this sport!

#1. Trust the coaches!

    • Leave the coaching to the coaches: We understand that you want the best for your child and you know the best for your child; that’s why you brought them here right?!  As a coach, we feel the same way.  When you start to coach your child in the lobby, or in the stands, all it does is confuse your child on who they need to listen to.  It’s just best to leave the coaching to the coaches!
    • Trust that your coaches know how to handle situations with your child: If your child is hurt, scared, being defiant, angry, etc. most of you will want to get up out of your chair and go protect them (which is completely normal!!).  The best way to handle any situation like that is to leave it to the coaches.  If the coaches need you, they will come get you, or come up to you after class to inform you on the situation.  It helps build a trust and relationship with the gymnast and coaches which will then, surprisingly enough, help them achieve much more in the sport.
    • Direct questions about practice to coaches:  There will be times in this sport where your child will come home frustrated, sad, tired, angry, etc. about a practice they had.  Just know these days will happen.  They will tell you all about it, and you most likely will be supportive parents and be on their side 100%.  Generally when this happens however, comes the blame game, and that is directed at the coaches.  Just know there are always two sides to every story.  To resolve this, if you are unhappy with how your child went home from practice, contact the coaches directly to see what happened rather than getting upset with them.  It all generally ends up with a misunderstanding or miscommunication and can be resolved immediately.

#2 Be on time!!!!

We can’t stress this one enough!  Believe it or not, what you see your child doing in practice is not random!  The coaches have spent countless hours going over lesson plans and structuring them a certain way.  So when your child is late, or they leave early, they are missing crucial parts of a warm-up, or conditioning which can then lead to injuries.  You will be amazed at what can be accomplished in 5 minutes.

#3 Be supportive!

  • Be their #1 fan: As a gymnast, you get critiqued quite a lot.  You are judged on your routine by the judges, and the coaches are constantly trying to make you better by giving you lots of corrections during practice.  The last thing they need is to go home and get critiqued in the sport by their family!  Your role for them during this sport is very crucial.  They work so hard during practice to show you what they have accomplished during competitions.  Please try and keep all of this in mind, and instead of saying “you should have kept your legs straight” or “if you only have stuck that landing” try just congratulating them on a job well done or say something like “you’ll get ’em next time”.  It will make a world of a difference in their lives!
  • Support even on the bad days: There will be bad days!  That is life, it will happen and it will help your little gymnasts grow and become stronger.  Do not worry when this happens.  We know, you will support them as much as you can, just try and encourage them to get through it.  Perseverance is a life lesson that every kid should learn early in their life.

#4 Nutrition is VERY important.

We know you are very busy parents.  And we also know that you like to treat your kids to yummy foods.  All of this is OK!  Here are some pointers from previous gymnasts, and coaches:

  • Protein, no matter what kind, is always good for building muscle which in turn will help your child progress in the sport.
  • Sports drinks are full of sugar!  The best thing you can have your child drink is water water water.
  • When coaches hear: “Miss Suzy, guess what I had before practice, Ice Cream!”  they cringe.  Having ice cream is great!  We all love it!  But having sweets before and during practice will not give them the correct energy they need to get through a rough 4-6 hour practice.  Healthy snacks and meals are the way to go!

#5 Gymnastics is safe

As a parent, constantly being at practice, is not necessary.  To be completely honest, kids perform better when their parent is not present vs. when they are watching all the time.  Checking in on your child’s progress is always great.  Being there every second, every practice has a strain on the child, and therefore a strain on the trust between the coaches and gymnasts.

#6 Comparing your child’s progress to others is a recipe for disaster: 

Gymnasts excel at different rates.  Something that is very common, is when parents compare their children who may not be doing as well, to kids that are winning every meet!  Sometimes it is frustrating to watch when all you want is your child to be up on the podium after every competition.  What us coaches want to stress is this could put a damper on your relationship with your child and will in turn put a damper on your child and the sport that they love. Some progress faster than others, it happens.  What you should try and do instead, is to one, see if they are happy.  If they love going to practice each and every single day, there isn’t much you should worry about!  Two, are they progressing.  Not necessarily how you want them to progress, but from where they started, have they gotten better.  As coaches, we understand some pick up skills and conditioning faster than others.  That DOES NOT mean they are better than the other.  We tend to have different goals depending on how each kid progresses.  You can do the same!

#7 This sport is so much more than just gymnastics:  

You brought your child into the greatest sport of all time! (this might be a little bias coming from a coach :)) Here are just a few, in no particular order, of the many ways gymnastics is much more than just flipping!

  • Fitness– The most obvious choice is how fit and healthy these young athletes become!  At a young age they are put through tough strength training teaching them about physical fitness.  They soon realize that doing gymnastics (being active) is fun!  What better way to show kids that being active is actually fun and not a chore.  This in turn will help them choose to play outside and be active vs. choosing to be on the couch when its nice outside etc.  T
  • Social Skills-  This helps in every aspect of life!  In gymnastics, they learn to become part of a team.  They build friendships and relationships with their coaches.  They learn how to communicate (something we work on ALL the time in our gym) when something is bothering them, hurting them, or frustrating them, or just makes them happy!
  • Work Ethic-  This is a big one!  In our gym, gymnasts are given assignments that they must finish or there will be consequences.  They are taught time management with these assignments.  You get your assignment finished, you get to work other things!  Even learning their routines, and coming to practice every day, they go to those competitions and have something to show for their hard work.  So seeing how hard you have to work, and have something awesome to show for, will in turn help them out at a possible job later down the road, or even something simple as finishing their chores around the house!  They also are in the gym several hours per week which means they need to learn how to juggle something they love with school work!  It is a tough one, but those who now how to get through it will be very successful down the road.
  • Discipline- Learning how to stand in line, wait for your turn, sharing with others are all a part of gymnastics.  They are also taught how to listen to their coaches and fix the corrections they give them.  They are taught proper etiquette while being in the gym, not running across the floor when girls are tumbling, or at a competition, don’t run in front of the judges, be respectful of others.

As you can see the list can go on and on!  Gymnastics is a great sport and we hope, with your help parents, we can show everyone we cross paths with just how amazing it truly is!

 

 

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Circle of Stars Invitational

Our second meet we traveled to Indianapolis, IN for the Circle of Stars Invitational!

Our level 8’s were up first:

level 8s-Circle #2

These girls had a great 2nd meet!  There are some things they took from this meet that they need to get better on, but overall they crushed it!  Danielle, Tayte, and Gabby all received first place all-around and Kelsie and Sienna received 2nd place all-around!  Tayte also made it on the list for Gymnasts on 2018 America’s Top 100 for her 9.750 floor routine!  Wow!  Not only did they individually compete well, they won 1st place as a team with a 112.375!!  Great job girls!

level 8s-Circle

It gets even better!  The girls not only received first place as a team; out of all 39 teams, 6 sessions of level 8s, these girls had the highest all-around!  What a great accomplishment ladies!  There was also a prize for this:

jeanette, livy, and check

Way to go Performance!

Up next were our level 6’slevel 6s-Circle #2

Now, these kids started off the competition a little rough.  We will just say it wasn’t their best meet.  But that didn’t stop them from finishing off the competition strong.  Chase and Teresa received first place all-around, Aliyah received 3rd place all-around, and Bella received 1st place on floor!  Now, these kids also managed to squeeze into first place by .025!  Woah!  Teresa also made it on the Gymnasts on 2018 America’s Top 100 for her wonderful 9.6 bar routine!  Way to go girls!  We are very proud of you.  You girls finished the competition off strong and continued with good attitudes!

The next day started off  and ended with our level 4’s:

Level 4s-Circle

These girls did a great job and we couldn’t be more proud!  Lily and Faith received first all-around and Bella received 1st on vault and bars!  The team received 2nd place with a 112.425!  That is 2 points higher than their last meet!  Great way to continuously improve ladies!  They lost 1st place by .150.  SO close!  Great job girls and we can’t wait for the next competition.

The next day our level 3’s started us off bright and early and obviously ready:

Level 3s-Circle #2

These girls had a fabulous meet.  Even had some making the judges crack up!  I mean look how cute they are!  Miranda and Savannah received 1st place all-around, Blaire received 2nd, Reagan received 3rd, and Makiah received 1st on floor.  Great job ladies!

We had two girls join the Gymnasts on 2018 America’s Top 100.  And that is Makiah with her 9.65 on bars and Miranda with a 9.725 on bars.  Wow!

They also received 3rd place as a team with a 111.40!  They worked hard to fix some things from the last competition and accomplished those!  We still have lots to work on but we couldn’t be more proud!

Following the 3’s were our level 7’s

Level 7s-Circle

Libby was feeling much better so she was able to compete!! YAY!!

Since there were three of them at this competition they were able to receive an all-around as a team!  They received 8th place with a 109.825.  And Evy and Alana received second place all-around!  There is always room for improvement.  Let’s keep working hard and get better from here!  Great job ladies!

Last but not least was our wonderful level 9 Ava

level 9-circle

She has such an awesome cheering group that comes with her.  We love how much you guys support each other, it is awesome!

Since there is only one, there is no team score.  Individually she received 4th place all-around with a 35.275.  We are so proud of you Ava!

 

We are so proud of all of you girls and continue to be amazed.  We love you girls and can’ wait for our busy competition schedule coming up!  Stay tuned to see how the xcels competed at their last meet!

 

Battle of Champions Competition

It was our first competition up in Toledo, Ohio and some of our girls first competition ever!  We are so thrilled with how well everyone competed!  First up were our Level 6’s and Xcel Platinums!

Platinums and 6s

It was so fun to have both teams going at the same time so close together!  No matter what team these girls are on they always cheer for each other!  Great team spirit and we love it!

Our Xcel platinums had several individual goals that they wanted to achieve: Samantha received her highest bar score since last year, and Emma received 2nd place!  We had some ups and some downs but what better way to start a year knowing we can only get better from here!  The team placed 6th with a score of 108.00.  Good start girls!

Our Level 6’s competed new and improved routines from last year!  Some of these girls received scores that made it to Gymnasts on America’s 2018 Top 100 List!  These girls are: Bella with a 9.65 on Beam and Floor; Chase with a 9.775 on Beam, 9.7 on Floor, and a 37.7 AA; and Teresa with a 9.525 on Bars!  Way to go ladies!  Not only did these ladies crush their competition (with some things they still need to work on)  they received 1st place as a team with a total of 112.825.  Keep up the great work!

Next up were our lovely level 8s!

Level 8s #2

They blew everyone out of the water!  There were some miss-haps, but they pulled it together with a win!  We are so unbelievably proud of how well they competed.  Some of them also made it to Gymnasts on America’s 2018 Top 100 List!  Those girls are:  Danielle with a 9.6 on Bars, 9.625 on Beam, and a 37.95 All-around; Tayte with a 9.525 on Beam, 9.60 on Floor, and a 37.625 All-Around; and Sienna with a 9.50 on Vault!  Way to go girls!  Their team total was a 112.675.

Our day was only 1/2 way over!  Next up were the Xcel Golds!

xcel gold

Our Xcel Golds started off beam strong with two 9.5s!  Great job girls!  They had new and improved floor routines that they got to show off and landed them a team score of 108.27.  Most of these girls were xcel silvers last year so they had lots of new routines to compete!  They worked hard, and are ready to work even harder for their next competition!

For the last session of the first day, it was our xcel silvers turn to rock the floor!

xcel silver

All of these girls are brand new to this team!  It was their first year ever competing!  Wow!  We even had one girl make it on the Gymnasts on America’s 2018 Top 100 List!  That girl is Alli with a 9.7 on Beam!  Way to go!  These girls found out what a competition is like and landed them a team score of 110.40!  That is a great start ladies!!  They are so excited for the next competition, and to continue progressing.  We can’t wait!

The next day our level 7’s were up!

Level 7s #2

Our 3rd level 7 was unfortunately sick so they weren’t able to place as a team.  On the other hand, these two rocked it!  Evelyn placed 1st with a 37.300 All-around, and Alana placed 2nd with a 36.925!  We are so proud ladies!

Our cutie level 3’s were the next session!

level 3s

This was most of these girls first competition!!  They were amazing!  We had one of our girls make it on the Gymnasts on America’s 2018 Top 100 List.  And that was our wonderful Blaire with a 9.725 on Bars.  These little girls had a tough competition for their first one ever and they wound up in 3rd place with a team score of 112.125.  We have lots of work to do but so happy with this great start!

Our wonderful level 9 was our last session for the day!

Wavy

She had a great squad to help cheer her on!  She conquered several fears that have been weighing down on her for so long and we are SO proud of her!  She also competed new and improved routines which helped her accomplish all of her goals for this first competition.  She wound up in 5th place all-around with a 1st place on floor!  Congratulations Ava!

Day 3 started and ended with our level 4s!

level 4s

It was most of these girls first competition as a level 4, and they competed very well!  Coming out of this first competition we have some things we do need to work on, but overall we couldn’t be happier with their first competition!  Our superstar Lily made it on the Gymnasts on America’s 2018 Top 100 List for: Bars with a 9.65, Beam with a 9.7, Floor with a 9.6, and the All-around with a 37.825.  These girls received first place as a team with a 110.00!

We are so thrilled with every single group and how they competed.  Whether there were falls, or mistakes, or not placing where they wanted to, that is all a part of the learning experience!  The important thing is, is that you try your hardest, and you get back up!  Go PGA!

Stay tuned to find out how they did at their next competition!

Mock meet

We had our annual Mock Meet on Sunday December 17th!  It was a blast!! First up to compete were our xcels!  It was our silvers first competition ever and they did a fabulous job!  Our gold and platinums also rocked it!!

We do something a little extra special with our optionals and made it an inter-squad competition.  We split up into three groups: team blue, team red, and team pink!

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We came up with some pretty awesome themes this year!!  We had so much fun and we are so proud of how well the girls competed!

The winners of the mock meet receive bragging rights for a year and some delicious gourmet cupcakes from: Cake Hope Love!

The winners of this year AND last year are…. Team Pink!!!  Blue or red will get them next year!

Last but not least were our level 4s and level 3s!!  We were very impressed with how well they competed and we are so excited for our first competition in January!  Aren’t they the cutest!

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Stay tuned to find out how they do!!