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Child in DDs age group passed her out skill & performance wise, coach playing favorites

Gymmommy2524

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My DD is a very promising gymnast & is on the to youngest elite team in the gym. She was the best & had the best results in her age group, works so hard but another child has passed her out & the coach is spending much more time with this child...
My child is not a very natural gymnast & has had to work much harder than some of the others to get where she is. It's disheartening for her to see the coach ignore her little improvements & focus on the other child...
I guess my question is does this motivate or crush young kids? I know they are so young developmentally I guess my question is can my DD catch up with this child again & even surpass?
I know I sound like a demented crazy mommy so please be kind!
 

SMH

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I think you need to slow down. There are a lot of questions here that will change the way people respond.
How old is your child? What does ‘elite’ mean in your gym? Does your child feel ignored or are these your feelings?
In general- gymnasts will all develop at different speeds. Some rocket ahead to slow way down. Some are always slow and steady. Some are just always on top of things.
If there is a clear issue/sign of favoritism (not just perceived) you have to evaluate if the program your child is in is the right one for them.
Only you know your own child- some are motivated by ‘healthy competition’ within teammates, and others are stressed out by it. While they all are a ‘team’ gymnastics is ultimately an individual sport.
 

Gymmommy2524

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DD is 8, our club in the UK call our squads Elite 1, 2, 3 etc... No dd doesn't notice the favouritism but I sit in on practice & have noticed... The 2 girls are very different styles of gymnast, my DD is flexible & graceful & tall for her age, the other child is small & very powerful & flexible... She is also very good friends with my child in the gym & DD is showing no signs of jealousy thankfully... I think the favouritism I'm noticing is my DD gets one go or attempt at skill like the others while the other child gets 4 or 5... We have no where to move to & the coaches are not approachable
 

NutterButter

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Why does your DD need to catch up and surpass another child? Focus on your daughter's journey in the sport. You will find that the 'best' (in terms of scores) changes from year to year. Kids develop physically and emotionally at different rates and this impacts how they develop as gymnasts. Your child's accomplishments are not at all diminished because another child moved up more quickly.
 

Gymmommy2524

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It's me who's feeling it! My daughter always placed before this child at competitions on all apparatus but this child has improved so rapidly over the past couple of months. I sat in practice tonight & she has passed my daughter out & is also very consistent. She is a lovely child but I think my daughter is now viewed as second best in the coaches eyes & she doesn't seem to have the time or interest in her anymore...
 

Cmumgym

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If you want to succeed you never want to be the best in the gym. Or in anything. No one is the best at anything. There is always someone better at things in life in general. You want ur dd to be surrounded by amazing gymnasts to give her a healthy competition to continue to strive. No point in being the best in the gym when there’s no competition to push you to do more. As you dd is only 8 you will see this throughout the years. Winning isn’t the important thing it’s teaching your child the skills in life for a healthy competition and also to be humble. I would hope to think coaches don’t favortise the strongest kid of the month this could just be your view as you are seeing another child strive.
 

Gymmommy2524

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Thanks for the kind replies was afraid I'd get slated! I have no other experience of youth sports so I guess what I'm asking is once a child is overtaken, does she always lag behind or can she catch up again or overtake?
I guess the coach in question is full of praise for this child, my daughter in fairness hasn't complained but has been trying to get the coaches attention & praise in her own way but it's not noticed...
 

3cats

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If this child is bothering you so much by just succeeding than it is time for you to stop watching gym. Be happy with your own daughter and how much she has accomplished in her short time in the sport. Cheer your daughter and her teammates on at competitions. And keep it at that. Stay out of the gym for practice, your future sanity will thank me!!
 

Cmumgym

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Thanks for the kind replies was afraid I'd get slated! I have no other experience of youth sports so I guess what I'm asking is once a child is overtaken, does she always lag behind or can she catch up again or overtake?
I guess the coach in question is full of praise for this child, my daughter in fairness hasn't complained but has been trying to get the coaches attention & praise in her own way but it's not noticed...
I would never want to consciously want my child to overtake another. Yes she will gain skills and may excel more at times rather than others. I would just be focused on your child and you give her praise. The coaches should be praising all children and you shouldn’t be worrying about ur child not getting praise when another child does. You won’t last long as a parent in this sport if you keep watching and having these feelings whilst watching. It will drive you insane.
 

Gymmommy2524

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Thanks 3cats &CMum I was actually wondering the same earlier, it might be best if I skipped the practice... The other child's mum stays too & to be honest the crazy gym mum side of me feels she'll know more than me regarding corrections & skills I know I sound like a complete lunatic!
I've found myself comparing my child to the other child & I don't like what I'm turning into... Please don't flame me I'm just trying to post honestly
 

NutterButter

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You are using words such as overtaken and lagging behind to describe an 8 year old! These words are associated with disappointment and failure. Step back a moment and ponder if that feels right to you to be describing your DD this way?

Your child's successes to this point are not diminished just because another child may be better at skills or competing or whatever the comparison may be.

It doesn't matter if your DD is at the top or bottom or middle if she's happy and in a safe and nurturing environment.
 

Gymmommy2524

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Thanks for replying, I guess since she was 5 she (& me I guess) was used to being the top in her age group, first to get new skills & coaching time. Now this little girl has surpassed her who I know is more naturally talented than my DD I just wondering what way things are likely to pan out... Can any more experienced mom's offer advice or throw some light on what they have seen over the years?
 

Jazzjerz

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I think it would bother me if the other girls were getting less coaching time and attention at the expense of my daughter. It’s hard to understand wanting that to happen. Can you put yourself in the shoes of the girls and the other parents who haven’t ever been the “favorite”?

Maybe instead of trying to finagle your daughter back into that spot, you could work on what you CAN control, which is changing the self admitted path you are headed down to Crazy Gym Mom territory.
 
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2G1B

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These kids go back and forth on who is the best. Some kids are just naturals AND have good work habits and those kids will advance faster. But for most of the kids, it is back and forth. There are kids ahead of my DD now who years ago were behind her. There are other kids who were way ahead of her and they have quit. It just isn't worth worrying about.
 

OrchidZ

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This is a tough one. I had a coach friend say that coaches do like to spend a little extra time with a child when they are "on a roll." The idea is that, just like a growth spurt, sometimes a kid hits a stride. They want to take advantage of that time and make as much progress as they can, knowing full well that it may come around and others will hit times of "flow". But I've also observed teams (higher levels) where one or two consistently get more attention (sending the rest of the team to work basics for many hours a week so that they can focus on one or two) over the course of a year or more. And of course, those kids advance quickly and score very well.

There's really nothing to be done about it. This is the way the sport is. Gyms and coaches want to nurture the kids who have the ability and talent to go further and do better, yes even if that means your kid will get less attention. Is it fair? They would say yes. Why should they hold back that quick learner for others? But is it?

I've been there, done that. For me, it was not ok for them to be in the same group. Of course, basics are important. Self reliance is important. But I want my kid's training time to be focused and well used. Otherwise, we have other things (school! family time! rest/healing time!) that REALLY need doing. We thankfully have a choice and have chosen a gym where Golden Girls have their own high performance group that trains separately. My girl now gets more done in fewer hours and is extremely happy. Don't get me wrong. My girl is talented. She was a "favorite" at one time. She wants to do more and be more. But this is what it is. Where she is right now.. maybe always. But she's learning, challenged, happy, and it's ok whatever or however it turns out. ME demonstrating that sentiment (that it's all ok) really helps her stay positive and moving forward.

If you don't have another gym option, you are just going to have to learn to deal with this positively for your daughter's sake. She may not notice right now, but eventually she will. If you feel negatively about this, she will probably pick up on it, and it will affect her and her interactions in the gym. Kids need to KNOW that they are enough, whatever they are.. and that starts with the adults around them.
 

OrchidZ

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As for the actual questions asked..

You said:
It's disheartening for her to see the coach ignore her little improvements & focus on the other child...
But you also said:
No dd doesn't notice the favouritism
Does it bother her or not?

I guess my question is does this motivate or crush young kids?
It depends on the kid. For some, they work harder. Some get frustrated with their own pace and eventually quit or leave (or due to other issues). Some are accept it and do what they do. We can't predict this for any given child.

can my DD catch up with this child again & even surpass?
I'm going to answer this honestly and directly, as asked. If the other girl stays super teachable, can handle the stress, and doesn't get seriously injured (hope not).. at the current rate, probably not. If the other girl has been tapped for great things but your girl has not and nothing else changes, expect this to continue. But who can see the future? But does it really matter? If it's not this girl, it could be another girl who transfers in. Other girls from other gyms who do better or move faster. This is why it's better to just focus on your girl and her own path. You can't predict or second guess any of this. All you can do that is of any benefit is love and support your girl in her own path.
 
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Tmacs

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My dd just turned 9 and was one of the two top gymnasts in her group last year. The other girl definitely has more natural talent but their scores were very similar. Both were slated to skip a level this year. The other girl did and my dd didn’t... partially because of my choice to skip most of summer training for a family trip. Will my dd ever catch up with her old teammate... probably not. Do I care? No... but I will admit having a few thoughts of where she could be had she not missed. However, she’s happy, loves gym, and we successfully put our family first. I don’t think she’ll do this for the long haul so I’m trying to just enjoy each season... the friendships with other moms etc. Luckily, we are at a very healthy gym though so it might be harder if I thought the coaches were really spending unbalanced time.
 

Gymmommy2524

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Thanks, I really appreciate the replies. I hate myself for comparing, it's a very expensive sport & we want DD to be the best she can...
I'm afraid to skip practice as the other child's mother sits through full sessions every & takes notes on her daughter when she needs to. Im afraid if I don't stay I won't know my daughter's weaknesses & she'll slip further away... Also I'm a bit disappointed that the coach has a new favorite & I want to ensure my daughter is still getting a little time... I know I sound crazy but I just want to be honest
 
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Tmacs

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Thanks, I really appreciate the replies. I hate myself for comparing, it's a very expensive sport & we want DD to be the best she can...
I'm afraid to skip practice as the other child's mother sits through full sessions every & takes notes on her daughter when she needs to. Im afraid if I don't stay I won't know my daughter's weaknesses & she'll slip further away... Also I'm a bit disappointed that the coach has a new favorite & I want to ensure my daughter is still getting a little time... I know I sound crazy but I just want to be honest
I highly recommend skipping practices and doing something for yourself. Your relationship with you daughter is the most important thing and I guarantee if you start taking notes and coaching and making comments, she will eventually sense disappointment or failure and it WILL destroy your relationship. Not at 8 but down the road...I’ve seen moms/dads post their regret when their daughter leaves the sport and they have no relationship with her because conversations, activities etc. were all focused around gym. Let the other mom be crazy and take notes and you take the high road and get back to your own personal care and interests. Find other activities you enjoy with your daughter and don’t talk about gym unless she brings it up.
Also, our kids are going to experience all kinds of unfairness in life starting now. Let them! They’ll become so resilient. My dad was an Olympian in the sport I did. Even though I competed in college, I wasn’t ever that good and I wasn’t ever a coach favourite by any means. Yet I never felt pressure at all from my parents to achieve- yes, do my best, work hard, and follow through on commitments but never beat a certain teammate or reach a certain level. And I love them for it. They helped me navigate life and interests but mostly stayed out of it and our relationship thrived. Gym will end some day... but you will always be mom- choose to be loving and supportive one far from the gym .
 

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