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Age or level for grips

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gymmomntc2e6

Moderator/Proud Parent
Aug 25, 2007
2,842
North Carolina
Check with your coach. DD's gym ( and many others ) do not allow the girls to wear grips until they have their kip and are L5. This is because you need to learn the feel of the bar and how to regrip w/o them before you do it with them.
 
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cher062

Guest
Every gym has their own rules with regard to grips. In our gym L5 is the first level you can get them in but usually its only the older L5 girls who may also be training L6 while competing L5. All L6 have velcro ones and L7 and up get buckle ones. L7 can have the velcro(from L6) but when they out grow them they get the buckle ones.
 

bogwoppit

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Feb 26, 2007
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In our gym they can wear them whenever they want, but they are NOT allowed to mess around taking them on or off during the rotation. Very few girls do wear them.
 

gymfan4ever95

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Mar 29, 2009
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At my gym, you can get them whenever you want, but at level 5 you are required to have them usually. That is when i got mine. I don't really see what would be wrong with haveing them at L4, but i don't think you really need them until you do kips and are going up to the high bar, where you have the risk of peeling (slipping) off the bar. Hopes this helps!
 

Caligirlzz

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Jun 4, 2009
155
Chicago
So it seems L 5 is the winner, with a few exceptions. I believe our gym is the same way with L 5 being the start of grips. Thanks for all the replies
 

Aussie_coach

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It is a very individual desicion. There is probably no ideal age or level but there are a few things to consider.

Age is a big factor, grips to young can cause damage to the growth plates in the wrist which can lead to wrist pain later on and even early arthiritis. Grips are safer for teenagers froim about 12 and up. Younger than this a junior grips are preferable. For the very young ones (6 and 7's) is preferable not to use grips yet.

Body weight is another factor. A heavier kid will have more pressure on their hands and skin and they often rip more. So if a child is older or heavier we will allow the use of grips earlier.

We tend to consider skills too, it is often better to spend a bit of time training without grips first to allow a natural grip on the bar. So we usually wait until the child has competent straight arm kips. But prefer to get them into grips before doing skills like giants.

Each kid also has a different toughness level in their skin. some kids just have to swing on the bars and they rip while others can work out for hours without issue's.

The length of time the group spends on bars is yet another consideration. The longer their sessions the earlier they will need grips.

Soi basically there are so many other factors besides age and level.
 
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gymnut1

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Age is a big factor, grips to young can cause damage to the growth plates in the wrist which can lead to wrist pain later on and even early arthiritis. Grips are safer for teenagers froim about 12 and up. Younger than this a junior grips are preferable. For the very young ones (6 and 7's) is preferable not to use grips yet.

What is the scientific evidence for for this? Almost all children who are going to wear grips have them before they are 12. Surely that many children are not being put at risk. What are junior grips. I haven't heard of them. Why dont they have the same effect as grips. I am interested as all our club have grips as soon as their hands are big enough (about age 6 -7)
 

nicci1999

Active Member
Gymnast
Dec 21, 2008
799
NH
Our gym, the general rule is level six I believe. I don't know if prep op has different rules or not
 

gymluvr33

Active Member
Jul 31, 2008
580
New Hampshire, USA
At our gym, you must be able to connect the first half of the L5 bar routine. However, I competed for a year before I got grips, and most kids compete before they get grips also. So I guess at our gym it's a combination of experience and skill.
 

gym law mom

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Dec 23, 2006
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At the present gym, the girls get grips after the L5 season when they are working full time on the L6 bar skills. At our previous gym, they got them after the L6 season when they were working giants full time.
 

Blackie6

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Mar 1, 2007
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LOL, we are going thru the grip thing right now. Last year the girls moving up from L4 to L5 got them right around L4 states meet as they were going right into L5. My DD stayed back (she was only 6) and doing another yr. Her and the rest of the girls eagerly awaitted their turn to get them after their states. Then the coach changed her mond and told them they would wait until L6 since they all had small hands but tough hands. Well, along with working those new kips came rips. My DD's hands are fine and I stick w/coaches rule but since some of the new 5's are getting them it is created grip havoc on the team so she just OK'd for all of them to get them. However, if they do they will use them all the time! No going back and forth,LOL. She requires the dowel/buckel grips and we are all ordering either the Pixie grips or the Hot Shots. I think each gym is different. Some girls get rips more easily than others & may need them early on. I think most gyms get them around L5/L6 as the bar time/skills increase. I still don't think my DD needs them but it seems to be a rite of passage into real gymnastics! Good luck!
 

momof5

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Oct 26, 2007
375
Our girls get them the summer while they are training for L5. In the summer they have already been training level 5 bars for awhile.
 

MissBear

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May 4, 2009
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Our girls get them after Grade 13 (age 8-9) if they go down the grades route.
If they go down the elite levels route they get them anywhere from just after Compulsory 4 to just before Voluntary 3 i.e age 8 - 10. Compulsory 3 bars routine is Kip, giant, giant, backaway, so that is taken into account.
 

marie83

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Mar 23, 2009
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At our gym they have them as soon as they start in our development squad. Even if that means they are literally just wearing them for chin ups and tap swings.
I personally don't like it. I think they are totally unnecassary at this level BUT I kinda do see our club owner's perspective. She likes the gymnasts to have them for their first competition so getting them used to wearing them early is a bonus as they will be 100% used to them.

Grips are compulsory in our gym purely for the fact that we like to keep the bars chalky. As soon as someone goes on without grips all the chalk disappears! Even our once a week rec kids wear palm guards.
 

Caligirlzz

Member
Jun 4, 2009
155
Chicago
It's very intereting to hear about all of the different rules for gyms. My dd wants grips so bad but our gym wants them to get their hands hard enough to deal with rips.
 
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cher062

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It's very intereting to hear about all of the different rules for gyms. My dd wants grips so bad but our gym wants them to get their hands hard enough to deal with rips.

Thats our gym too but all L6 girls will have them. Usually if they come up through the ranks by then their hands are tough.
 

gymalex

Member
Jan 3, 2009
75
Dallas, TX
grips

I think that level 5 is perfect. They have done some bars work without grips to get used to the bar, so it's nice to have grips to train swinging. Our kiddos usually get them right after the level 4 season. At that point they have their kips and are ready. The buckle ones are preferable to the velcro grips....I've seen velcro grips come undone during routines- not good, and the kids also tend to play with the velcro part..... unwrap, rewrap, unwrap....the noise can be annoying! Plus the velcro loses its strength. Buckle all the way, and the smaller (narrower), softer grips are great for beginning users.
 
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