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Discussion in 'Men's Artistic Gymnastics (MAG)' started by jenjean70, Aug 18, 2018.

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  1. So my son came home from gym the other day and told me that he made a diam but not to handstand and that the coach told him that if he made it to handstand before 2 of the gymnasts training level 10 that he would take him to the movies. I figured it would be weeks or months until he made it to handstand but it was the VERY NEXT DAY! Hopefully I can get a video of it soon because I haven't even seen him working on it so this is a total surprise!
    For those of you with boys who do diams- was it difficult to go from "getting" the skill to putting it in a routine? I am wondering if he will be able to compete it this season.
    lilmisssunshine, Tuppy and txgymfan like this.
  2. What a fantastic skill to get! I think the amount of time to get it into a routine varies from gymnast to gymnast. It seems to be one of those skills that can come and go on a whim lol.

    So....the movie thing though....team outing? Parents? Just seems odd to have that as a reward with safe sport and all....
    Flipfloppy, sce and profmom like this.
  3. Coach offering to take a kid to the movies as a reward sets of alarm bells. If he meant something like give him a movie voucher that is great. If he meant a private outing with the two of them, what is going on.
  4. Congrats to him on the skill! I know you probably didn't think going in, but the others are correct. The offer to take him to the movies sets off alarm bells. We may just be being paranoid(maybe the coach is young and just doesn't know better yet about proper boundaries), but it is possibly textbook grooming behavior. Please keep an eye on the situation and follow up.
    Flipfloppy and profmom like this.
  5. The coaches give those rewards often although usually 2 or 3 boys earn it. He is more of a family friend because I will babysit his kids and he will get my son to practice or bring him home if I have run out of options. Plus 2 of the coaches live in my neighborhood so the other coach would sometimes pick up my son and another boy if we didn't have enough people available to get them to practice. All of the coaches are more like family and I trust them completely. It's sad that the state of the world has put everything under a microscope. Almost 20 years ago when I coached middle school cheerleaders I would drive the girls in my personal vehicle if their parents couldn't get them to a game or home from practice....I couldn't even think about doing something like that now.
  6. i get that. However, our gym would never consider violating safe sport, even for family friends. And taking 1 kid with 1 coach is a violation. One of D's former teammates is a coach at his gym now, and D was not allowed to ride wtih him to camp....even though they have had sleep overs, and have traveled together. But now...coach/gymnast, it violates safe sport.

    Can't wait to see video of the new skill!!
    Flipfloppy, sce, acam1103 and 2 others like this.
  7. If anyone has not seen it yet, you can review USAG's Safe Sport policy at https://usagym.org/PDFs/About USA Gymnastics/safesportpolicy_062617.pdf. Part 1 section D creates strict boundaries intended to minimize opportunities for grooming. It's definitely been discussed and implemented at our gym. It was a real change particularly for our optionals who were coaching and often working out fairly independently -- they had to think hard about their relationship with the boys' team assistant coach to ensure that boundaries were respected appropriately.

    All of this change is significant for people who've grown up in another era, for sure, but having seen a groomer in action, I think it is very much for the better. The minor loss of intimacy between coaches and athletes is overwhelmingly overbalanced by preventing the damage that coercive, unhealthy relationships, whether sexual or not, will cause.
  8. Me either! I'm sure it is quite sloppy but I'm still impressed that he made it! As far as the reward....the coaches haven't been one on one with the boys since all of the "safe sport" rules came out. The rides and other movies happened before so I'm not sure what the logistics will be or even when it will happen. I wish that they could leave it up to the parents discretion- especially when taking kids to special camps and such but I think it is as much for the coaches protection as it is for the kids' protection.
    Jard.the.gymnast likes this.
  9. It is to protect both parties. Can you imagine a jealous teammate, or vindictive competitor? Gyms can lose their USAG sanctions for that!

    Also, it was left to discretion for years. Read some of these other threads. Predators groom parents too, with promises of Olympics, college scholarships, free instruction. That is why we need black and white rules around this, with no ambiguity and no gray areas. Yes, it stinks, but it is the best for the gymnast and the coaches!
    sce likes this.
  10. Yup. I get it. I just hate that we have to think that way. I heard of a teacher who had a student make false accusations because she was mad at the teacher and my mom had a group of 5th grade girls, when she was a librarian, who would get together every week and decide which outclass teacher they were going to harass that week. I don't like to see or even think about the ugly in people but it's there.
    sce and Jard.the.gymnast like this.
  11. I hear ya. But we have to, especially in our profession. And think in sports how easy it can happen. THink of the crazy you hear about in gym especially. It is the best for everyone :(

    Hopefully they figure out an appropriate way to reward him. Honestly, at our gym, our coaches won't even take small groups of gymnasts anywhere without parents. It is part of our contract. No rides, nothing. If we do something off campus, parents have to drive. It is hard, especially living an hour from the gym, but it is necessary.

    Funny part is, we had these rules in scouts and church long before gym came on board....
    sce and Jard.the.gymnast like this.
  12. The thing with parent discression is that the groomer sometimes grooms the family too. Parents have been tricked many times. Even think of the number of people that thought Nassar was such a great guy and defended him. It is sad that we have to be so careful, but overall it is necessary.
    Flipfloppy and skschlag like this.
  13. Yes to this. To me it’s not new and seemed odd that gyms did not have more boundaries in place already.
  14. My preacher used to pick me up for church on Sunday mornings and take me back home after church (I lived in another town and the couple that was driving me had moved away). It only went on for about 4 months during 6th grade until we found me another ride from my town, but nobody thought anything about it.
    sce likes this.
  15. I just know when my kids were little, in scouts and church, it was always 2 deep. No single adult alone with children ever.
    sce and raenndrops like this.
  16. About 20 years ago, my mother said your first two sentences. Spoiler: my coach was grooming both of us, and not long after I reached the age of consent in our state, he pushed the boundaries he'd been pushing even farther. He's currently under investigation for sexually abusing five athletes - that I know of - in that 20 year span. Every single one of them said, "He was like family." Every. Single. One.

    Most children who are abused are abused by family members and by people who "like family."
    sce, John and amiandjim like this.
  17. Congrats to your son! I don't even know what that skill is, but sounds impressive! I'll have to go look for a video. As for the movie, while your son's coach is most likely a great guy, it's better to keep everyone safe by following the rules. My 14yo DD is a camp counselor this summer for 4-6yos and she is not allowed to hug them or let them sit on her lap. It's obviously good policy, but it's been hard with kids that age who adore her and don't understand the rules. TBH, it was a sad convo explaining to her why the policy is meant to protect her as well.
    sce and Jard.the.gymnast like this.
  18. As a long-time coach, I have done all of the things above. Picked-up kids, dropped them off, etc. But, under the current SS policies, these are reportable offenses. The policies are currently being reviewed, but for now I would avoid any one-on-one interactions.

    To your original question; the Diam is a great skill and should be consistent in a few months. (Especially if it is on high rails) And make sure the legs are together! anyone on here who has missed one can explain why :)

    jenjean70 and Jard.the.gymnast like this.
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