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For Parents Coach favoring

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GymTwinsMom

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Hi, I was just wondering if any of your DDs are favored by the coaches. Or not and get really ticked off? Just out of curiosity. My girls don't have the nicest coach around but sometimes favor the better ones or the older ones. Confused!:confused:
 
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Billy

Guest
It does seem like sometimes coaches have their favorites. My DD is young enough that she doesn't notice... yet.
 

Scout's Mom

Member
Oct 2, 2007
89
Texas
I have (rarely) seen genuine cases of favoritism.

More often than not, the "favorites" are the girls who work the hardest and have the best attitudes.

Almost always, when I hear of favoritism at our gym, it comes from a mom of one of the girls who cheats on her conditioning or rolls her eyes or doesn't try her hardest--or all of these. It can't be fun to coach a child who isn't 100% dedicated and who disrespects you.

The mother is never aware of her daughter's behavior. Mom can't imagine that her little darling could be anything but perfect!

When your daughter comes home saying that the coach "picks on me" and "the coach doesn't like me," it could be that the coach sees lot of potential in your child and is getting really picky about the details so that she will score well. My daughter keeps that in perspective by saying to herself "When they ignore me and don't pick on me, that means they don't care."

If you really think there is a favoritism issue at your gym, you should address it with the head coach or owner.
 

Livinatthegym

Member
Feb 4, 2008
204
Region IV
Our optional coach had a clear favorite. She was one of the younger girls, a 12 yo lvl 9. Can we say no teen issues? She was one of those mediocre compulsories that shot to the top as an optional. Hard-worker. Nice kid.

We all knew she was the favorite, and we were pretty open about it when the parents were all talking together. I mean, it was pretty clear. Even the favorite's parents had to acknowlege that she was liked better than the other girls and got more attention.

Did it bother the other girls? Definitely, but there wasn't much to be done about it. The owner could talk to the coach, but the coach would certainly deny she played favorites. After all, all the girls were competing well.

Anyway, just one of those "life isn't fair" situations we had to learn to live with. Certain people click; certain others don't.
 

DynamicMom

New Member
Jun 5, 2008
45
Springfield, MO
This really hits home for us. We left our old gym because of a coach who just could not click with our dd. I am the mother of a very outspoken 4 year old! She will tell you just what she is thinking, it's a trait that we must work on fine tuning. However her coach clearly favored my best friends dd who was also int he class, and since there were only three kids in the class since they were 18 months old we all saw it! When dd and my friends dd would talk my dd would get yelled at but never the other kids. It got to the point where my dd and the other little girl were not learning anything new! When we confronted the coach, she said that dd was just to SOCIAL to be a gymnast.
That's when we decided this coach had nothing else to offer us, and made our move. All I can say is thank goodness we got that push to move along, it really made a difference!
At the new gym dd started with the owner and the two team coaches who also teach the preschool classes. Now that she is level one going onto preteam she is a little favored by the owner, I think only because she started in her class. You still can see a little favoritism with other kids, but as someone else posted, maybe it's because they work extra hard, who knows! It does not feel great, but this really is a life lesson that they will need to learn sooner or later.:)
 
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GymTwinsMom

Guest
DynamicMom- Oh thats horrible, right infront of your face too! My DDs are fine, they are not favored but not picked on either. Just curious to see if anyone felt the same way. Glad your DD is doing much better!:)
 

Monkeygirlsmom

Active Member
Proud Parent
Feb 10, 2007
764
I have not seen this much at our gym! the most in the wya of favoritsm I have seen to me is they know the kids better,
or the kids who have been on that level before they are the ones to show others but I dont feel they are favored just know what the thing is and is helping out!
no matter where anyone is at there will be some I feel if nothing else because they know the kids better and are used to them
hope that makes sense
 

mariposa

Proud Parent
Proud Parent
Sep 25, 2007
3,529
Country
USA
DynamicMom,

We had the same situation with our old gym. My DDs best friend is super talented and super cute. All the coaches love her and it was obvious. It was very hard for my DD. We didn't leave because of that though, her best friend was moved up to pre-team and then it wasn't a factor, but now that we are at another gym, it is better.

I think it has to be hard sometimes on the favorites because it can create resentment from the other girls. But it is life, as others have said.
 
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flippymonkeysmom

Guest
We have only been at one gym where that was a problem - the gym dd competed at before the one she is at now. Since the team was so large (approx 100 girls) - the favorites in the comp's were the ones with the ideal body type, etc. It was almost as if they didn't want to bother with the ones who weren't as natural and wouldn't be as easy to coach. The sad thing is a few of the ones who were picked as favorites were horrendous little beasts. The nastiness, attitude, etc. They were the ones rolling their eyes and not listening - but still got favored. I can't tell you how happy I was when we switched gyms and my dd beat every single one of them at states last year. Petty, I know, but it still felt good. Now at her gym she is one of the favorites because she listens, never cops an attitude (at the gym anyway), works hard and tries her best.
 

momof5

Member
Proud Parent
Oct 26, 2007
375
This is the biggest issue I have with our gym. 2 of the 4 team coaches play obvious favorites. I see two types of favorites. The first is the super talented athlete. The other type I see is someone in the gym is related to someone they are friends with or work with and their dd becomes a favorite. This one has been a big problem for us. There is a little girl who is not being held to the same standard for move ups as everybody else. It can be very frustrating to see.
 

midwestgymmom

Active Member
Aug 27, 2006
661
midwest
My dd doesnt mind others getting more attention or being favorites as long as she gets a " hey, good try" or positive feedback for what she did do right frequently. But if someone is getting lots of kudos and she gets no feedback whatever or just the "stay tight" comment then resentment tends to build. It seems like the coaches tend to love the girls who will just do a new skill with no fear for their safety and it drives the other girls strugging to get that skill crazy when a coach gushes over the fearless one thats. when Ive seen problems.
 

kristilyn73

Active Member
Jan 17, 2008
1,326
Minnesota
I agree with Scout's Mom... Most of the time what is percieved as favoritism in our gym is actually the coaches working with the girls that want to be coached.

Does my daughter cop an attitude sometimes? Yes. Has she talked back? Yes. but most days she is there focused and happy to be there, so she is given attention when someone who might be talking behind others backs will not be given attention...
 

ellabella

Member
May 26, 2008
176
I'm going to speak from the perspective of a coach's wife and what I have heard from my husband.

He had favorites for sure. Most of the time the reasons were obvious ones. Kid A does what she is asked with no complaints, whining, excuses etc. Kid B does not.

He sometimes didn't like kids because of their parents. He was not a fan of parents that sat in the gym everyday and watched every single move that was made and read into every decision as if it had some meaning. For example they would make rotation groups and there were certain parents who would take note of which group their child was put in and read into this. Level 5-10 trained at the same time. To even the groups sometimes kids were mixed up a bit. Sometimes the groups were meant to keep 2 talkers away from each other. Sometimes they were made on a whim. Parents would freak if one of the Level 7's got to be with the Level 10's that day. They would actually question him after practice. Why did so and so get to work with the higher levels today. Does that mean they are moving up and my child is not?

Other parents would sit to watch and their child would constantly be looking at their parent for instructions. The gym is small and there isn't a great distance between parents and kids. There isn't glass or anything. I know you've all met parents like this. They are shouting "Point your toes" across the gym floor.

His favorite is parents who complain that their child isn't being coached on something. Often kids who won't do flyaways, tumble backward, etc and after months of begging and pleading he got to a point where he felt like it was better to stop pressing the issue. Sometimes kids get things better without pressure. The parents then complain that their child is being neglected. Or he works and works to no avail and the week before the meet the parent wants a private. Too late at the point. There was once a parent who wanted a private the morning of the meet because her daughter wasn't letting go on her flyaway. She had an evening session at a local meet and wanted my husband to come to the gym and give her a private that day. LOL

So he favored kids who worked hard, had some natural ability and had parents who were caring and concerned, but weren't crazy. They didn't need to second guess every small thing that was said or done and attribute some higher meaning to it.

The gym owner certainly favored a particular child with a horrible attitude and the worst stage parents in the world because she was the star of the gym. The gym was new with no reputation and she was really good. She won a few events at Westerns and they needed her to promote the gym. Husband was told to tolerate her and bend to her needs to keep her happy and her mother happy. What a dumb decision. She ended up leaving anyway because you could never please her parents. She never competed again.
 

gymnomore

Member
Aug 3, 2007
208
What a popular topic! The above post is full of some excellent insight from a coach's perpective, or should I say coach's wife! Though I agree that she has made some good points, I also think that some favoritism at other gyms comes from coaches for reasons not so valid. At our last gym, I saw a lot of favoritism toward kids whose families were the "in crowd". Every gym has a few. And of course there is the added attention toward the coach's daughter, if that is the case at a gym. Fortunately, my dd was in the middle so it didn't affect her too much, but I saw it happening and felt badly for those that obviously were not favorites. Fast forward- now my dd is at another gym and she IS a favorite, for all the right reasons. It's nice to that she is favored, as she is finally getting the coaching she deserves, but it was difficult for her in that some of the girls obviously didn't like her being there. But they are gone now so things are nice and the other girls like and respect her for what she brings to the program.
 

mariposa

Proud Parent
Proud Parent
Sep 25, 2007
3,529
Country
USA
Loved the view from what a coach might think. Makes perfect sense. One of DDs friends from gymnastics is really talented, but is always goofing off and gets sulky when she doesn't get her way. I think some of the coaches get irritated with the behavior, though she is only 6 1/2, so some of it is just her age. I can see how it would suck to be putting tons of effort into a kid that doesn't seem to be paying attention.

I think that having favorites sometimes is natural and that it is probably more irritating when the child being favored is not a really nice kid and is just being favored for being so talented. That doesn't stop it from being hard when YOUR kid notices though and is upset about it. My DD has never complained of it at her new gym.
 
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GymTwinsMom

Guest
I'm going to speak from the perspective of a coach's wife and what I have heard from my husband.

He had favorites for sure. Most of the time the reasons were obvious ones. Kid A does what she is asked with no complaints, whining, excuses etc. Kid B does not.

He sometimes didn't like kids because of their parents. He was not a fan of parents that sat in the gym everyday and watched every single move that was made and read into every decision as if it had some meaning. For example they would make rotation groups and there were certain parents who would take note of which group their child was put in and read into this. Level 5-10 trained at the same time. To even the groups sometimes kids were mixed up a bit. Sometimes the groups were meant to keep 2 talkers away from each other. Sometimes they were made on a whim. Parents would freak if one of the Level 7's got to be with the Level 10's that day. They would actually question him after practice. Why did so and so get to work with the higher levels today. Does that mean they are moving up and my child is not?

Other parents would sit to watch and their child would constantly be looking at their parent for instructions. The gym is small and there isn't a great distance between parents and kids. There isn't glass or anything. I know you've all met parents like this. They are shouting "Point your toes" across the gym floor.

His favorite is parents who complain that their child isn't being coached on something. Often kids who won't do flyaways, tumble backward, etc and after months of begging and pleading he got to a point where he felt like it was better to stop pressing the issue. Sometimes kids get things better without pressure. The parents then complain that their child is being neglected. Or he works and works to no avail and the week before the meet the parent wants a private. Too late at the point. There was once a parent who wanted a private the morning of the meet because her daughter wasn't letting go on her flyaway. She had an evening session at a local meet and wanted my husband to come to the gym and give her a private that day. LOL

So he favored kids who worked hard, had some natural ability and had parents who were caring and concerned, but weren't crazy. They didn't need to second guess every small thing that was said or done and attribute some higher meaning to it.

The gym owner certainly favored a particular child with a horrible attitude and the worst stage parents in the world because she was the star of the gym. The gym was new with no reputation and she was really good. She won a few events at Westerns and they needed her to promote the gym. Husband was told to tolerate her and bend to her needs to keep her happy and her mother happy. What a dumb decision. She ended up leaving anyway because you could never please her parents. She never competed again.


ellabella- All I can say is... Oh. My. Gosh. That was a great post and helped me alot. I love the parts about the parents! There are actually a few at the gym who scream " GET YOUR LEGS TOGETHER"..."THAT WAS YUCKY!" Yeesh!:rolleyes:
 

gymmomntc2e6

Moderator/Proud Parent
Aug 25, 2007
2,842
North Carolina
EllaBella,

I think your post was great. I must plead guilty to watching almost every practice. :rolleyes:.

But... I try not to read anything into anything. To be honest, I just love the sport and I love watching DD have fun. I do my very best to refrain from any type of coaching other than some high 5's. But, I have likely failed at that multiple times :eek:. We do have glass and a door, I don't go into the gym, sometimes when she comes out for a drink I might tell her she needs to pay better attention or something.

I don't see a whole lot of favoritism at our gym. One of DD's L3 teammates has been w/ the gym since it opened and she was barely 3. I think she may be a fave, but I understand that as well.
 

ellabella

Member
May 26, 2008
176
I don't think hubby minded parents who watched. Just the parents that were causing trouble and constantly ready to place the blame on anyone but their daughter. It's the same parents who blame the teacher if their kid gets in trouble at school.

Sometime it is even more of a problem with the parents that were never at the gym. They show up to a meet and the kid doesn't perform well. They get angry, but really if they had been in the gym they would have seen that their kid wasn't working. They were goofing off and just passing time.

I think it makes it difficult to work with a child when you feel like you are being judged and judged unfairly. I can't speak for other coaches, but I know my husband never wanted anyone to fail. He would try to treat everyone the same, but it's natural to want to put more into someone if you feel like it is worth the effort. Sometime it can just be a personality thing. Not everyone is going to mesh.
 

kaenhu

New Member
Jun 5, 2008
41
Thank you Ellabella for posting--that was really quite informative.

I have a question about something you said though.

He sometimes didn't like kids because of their parents.

But this really isn't the kid's fault. They didn't pick their parents and they can't help how their parents behave.

I really feel sorry for these kids. I occasionally watch my dd's practice and there are 2 parents who watch every practice. They are the ones yelling to their kids, and their poor kids look up at them constantly during practice to brace themselves for the comment from the peanut gallery. I frequently hear the said parents berating their kid in the parking lot or after a meet. Like the kid doesn't feel bad enough already if they didn't do well at a meet.

And I am new to this whole thing but I am wondering. If the kids are coping a bad attitude, rolling eyes, not listening to coach, etc., should they be in the gym? Are they really interested in it?

I don't know if my dd is a favorite or not. Her coaches treat her well, but they treat the other girls well too. My dd is interested in doing gymnastics, having fun, and getting better. Therefore, she does what coach says. She might cry because the conditioning hurts, but she doesn't get mad at coach or cop an attitude. She does it, tears and all, and she is happy the day when she can do the work without hurting.

Great thread--so interesting to listen to others' experiences.
 

ellabella

Member
May 26, 2008
176
I guess I shouldn't say that he didn't "like" kids because of their parents actions, but more that they weren't his favorite. It makes it difficult to work with a child when their parents are difficult to deal with. Any time they are asked to do something they don't like or don't feel like doing they run to their parents. These kids are harder to coach. I'll use an example of a very talented kid that he really had a hard time with. He would give her a schedule of how many of each tumbling pass to do. She would do half if he was lucky. He wouldn't let her rotate until she did what he asked. So she would inevitably cry and go the bathroom and then her mother would get upset with him. This was a constant cycle. This was a 14 year old high level gymnast. This kid acted like this because she knew if she ran to her mother she would place the blame on the coach instead of just saying to her kid, "Well why don't you do what he asks you do to?".

With parents that are involved and supportive and have their feet firmly planted on the ground, he would be able to go to that parent and talk openly about problems he was having with their child. With certain parents you could never say anything negative about their kid. Nothing was ever their fault.
 
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