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Doing Privates for a girl from another gym

Flicfliclay

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Hey everyone! It's been a little quiet lately so i thought i would ask a question that i was thinking about. So there is a girl that comes in from another gym several times a month and does privates with coaches at my daughters gym. What do you guys think about that? I personally think it is odd and kinda crosses the line for both the gymnast and the coach. Of course i wouldn't get involved in this, but i am genuinely curious at what others think about this.
 

ausnat83

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Doesn't seem terribly odd or inappropriate to me. I guess if the gymnast's usual gym & coaches don't know about it, there might be a problem there. But not for you or other parents/gymnasts at your gym - that's between the gymnast, her parents, and her coaches. And perhaps a professional courtesy issue between the various coaches involved.

There are a lot of factors that go into gym selection besides the coaching, and a lot of reasons I can think of that doing a few privates with a specific coach each month is feasible or desirable but switching gyms entirely isn't. They might live a long way away, or have siblings whose gym or other activity schedules conflict with attending your gym. Perhaps their gym has a great environment overall but a coach at your gym has a specific strength that is lacking at their gym. Maybe the overall fit of your gym's coaching or culture isn't great for that gymnast, but the one specific coach's is. Maybe her gym doesn't have coaches offering privates right now. Who knows.

What bothers you about it specifically?
 

kendo348

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Our gym doesn’t allow it, and I think the knee-jerk reaction against it as a parent - at least for me - would come from feeling a bit like it’s fraternizing with/helping the enemy haha, if it’s a gym we would regularly compete against. But when you look at it logically, the points mentioned above are good points and also when you back up and see the big picture, the end goal is really helping kids to learn and love gymnastics. There are no “enemies” and getting help from whoever and in whatever way works for you is great! As long as all parties involved are in the know and in agreement.
 

Flicfliclay

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Doesn't seem terribly odd or inappropriate to me. I guess if the gymnast's usual gym & coaches don't know about it, there might be a problem there. But not for you or other parents/gymnasts at your gym - that's between the gymnast, her parents, and her coaches. And perhaps a professional courtesy issue between the various coaches involved.

There are a lot of factors that go into gym selection besides the coaching, and a lot of reasons I can think of that doing a few privates with a specific coach each month is feasible or desirable but switching gyms entirely isn't. They might live a long way away, or have siblings whose gym or other activity schedules conflict with attending your gym. Perhaps their gym has a great environment overall but a coach at your gym has a specific strength that is lacking at their gym. Maybe the overall fit of your gym's coaching or culture isn't great for that gymnast, but the one specific coach's is. Maybe her gym doesn't have coaches offering privates right now. Who knows.

What bothers you about it specifically?
Honestly I’m not sure it bothers me really. I just think it’s a bit of a contradiction for one of our team coaches coaching another gyms gymnast. I personally don’t care I just thought it was a good conversation to have. I don’t know of many gyms that would allow this.
 

Flicfliclay

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Our gym doesn’t allow it, and I think the knee-jerk reaction against it as a parent - at least for me - would come from feeling a bit like it’s fraternizing with/helping the enemy haha, if it’s a gym we would regularly compete against. But when you look at it logically, the points mentioned above are good points and also when you back up and see the big picture, the end goal is really helping kids to learn and love gymnastics. There are no “enemies” and getting help from whoever and in whatever way works for you is great! As long as all parties involved are in the know and in agreement.
I too think the reasons mentioned above are logically good reasons. It’s no sweat off my back because it’s not affecting us in any way. I just see people say quite often what a big no-no it is.
 

l.c.o

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You know, a couple of years ago I would have probably thought this was completely taboo. But my DD switched sports a bit ago, and during the high school season it isn't uncommon for my DD to go practice with the coach from another high school, so I don't see it the same way anymore. It's not even a private lesson, really - more like she just joins another team/group for a day, and it's totally coordinated by the coaches. Granted it's a different sport with a different overall.... atmosphere. Competition is a little friendlier in general. But sometimes kids just need a different voice, or different equipment. And these are all high-quality club coaches who happen to also coach for area high schools.

My other kid is still a gymnast, and I don't think it would bother me anymore if, say, someone from a different gym came in for a private with coach. Good on them for trying to improve?
 

raenndrops

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When we do privates, it is at another gym ... and our coach is fine with it.
We don't have all of the "bonus" equipment that this other gym has and our adult coaches all have "real" jobs and don't have time for privates.
 

ldw4mlo

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I don’t think it’s odd. And what line is crossed? Unless the gymnast is taking time away from a kid at the coaches gym there is no line.

Sometimes a different perspective is helpful.
 
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LJL07

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Given where we live, where all of the coaches in the entire state equals coaching staff at a big gym in Texas or California, I think it is ok to do this. In fact, in our area, I think it would be wonderful if more coaches were willing to help out all of the kids. I do know of girls who have gone to other gyms for additional bars or vault work.
 

GymParent

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I don't have any issues with it in many situations. My daughter trains at a fairly small gym and coaches aren't always available for lessons outside of normal practice times (family, multiple jobs, etc). There is a gym down the road training national team members and some of our girls will go over there to do private lessons here and there. Their tuition is MUCH higher than at my daughter's gym and it would be quite a long daily commute so the elite gym isn't a feasible option for us and most of my daughter's teammates.
 

John

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I am ok with it and actually think it is a good thing. A new voice or a new correction can be just what it takes to open a gymnast's eyes to something that has been missed from her normal familiar coaching staff.

DD's has a coach, bars and choreography, who does all her gyms beam and floor routines. This coach also does much of the choreography for surrounding gyms as well. It felt funny at first, like why help another team, but every gymnast deserves to have a beautiful routine she can call her own. When coaches are in the sport for the right reason they want every athlete to be successful no matter what club trains them or what club the athlete competes for. I actually wish the girls would treat competition more like the upper-level boys do.

My 2 Cents.
 

MuggleMom

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I feel like as long as both gyms knew about the situation and were ok with it its fine. I would only think it odd or worrisome if they were doing it behind their main gyms back--only because that could be a very drama filled situation but even then dont see how the drama would effect me only them. So I would just sit back and see how it unfolded lol.
 

Flicfliclay

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First off, WOW I loved every single response to this! Now only if the world would behave this way! Everyone had wonderful reasoning and i certainly can see benefits for girls doing this! I just thought it to be an interesting topic. I do not know if the girl that does the privates gym knows she is doing this and really i don't care. Thank you all for such a civil conversation!
 

twinmomma

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It's interesting, because in T&T and Acro, cross-coaching happens all the time. When DD did T&T, there were plenty of times coaches helped each other and helped other athletes. I think it's the mentality of being there for the kids vs. being there for the competition. Acro often has choreography done from coaches/athletes at other gyms. My DD's upcoming choreography is with elite athletes from another gym.

My son plays baseball and privates with a coach from another team that might specialize in catching or pitching is extremely common. Again, I think that we all have to acknowledge that we are here for the benefit of the kids and maybe then we can stop all the cross-gym negativity.
 

ausnat83

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I do get the knee-jerk reaction - it can seem atypical in artistic gymnastics. It is an interesting discussion.

Big picture though, I think it may actually be a good thing for the sport. I grew up in gymnastics but had a sibling who played "mainstream" sports in and out of school - soccer, baseball, basketball, football. Similarly, I have one gymmie and one baseball/soccer/pee-wee football player now. I look at the latter - they play in different leagues (and school teams), have different coaches and teammates each season, attend clinics and camps with all sorts of instructors and athletes from other leagues, have private sessions with specialists... the exposure is just much more broad. Different coaching styles, different knowledge and skill sets, opportunities to play different roles in teams with different makeups, different atmospheres... In artistic gymnastics on the other hand, coaches and gyms have traditionally "owned" the process for a given gymnast to an extent. One coach (especially if they're a head coach or gym owner) can utterly dominate the entire experience in the sport for a gymnast for their entire career, and a difficult situation at a single gym has resulted in more than one parent here watching their young athlete leave the sport entirely. Maybe moving away from that tradition could be a good thing? The skill progressions, technique, and specialist knowledge required for gymnastics mean it will (and should) never be exactly like a sport such as youth baseball, but perhaps pulling in some of those aspects will be beneficial.
 

twinmomma

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I do get the knee-jerk reaction - it can seem atypical in artistic gymnastics. It is an interesting discussion.

Big picture though, I think it may actually be a good thing for the sport. I grew up in gymnastics but had a sibling who played "mainstream" sports in and out of school - soccer, baseball, basketball, football. Similarly, I have one gymmie and one baseball/soccer/pee-wee football player now. I look at the latter - they play in different leagues (and school teams), have different coaches and teammates each season, attend clinics and camps with all sorts of instructors and athletes from other leagues, have private sessions with specialists... the exposure is just much more broad. Different coaching styles, different knowledge and skill sets, opportunities to play different roles in teams with different makeups, different atmospheres... In artistic gymnastics on the other hand, coaches and gyms have traditionally "owned" the process for a given gymnast to an extent. One coach (especially if they're a head coach or gym owner) can utterly dominate the entire experience in the sport for a gymnast for their entire career, and a difficult situation at a single gym has resulted in more than one parent here watching their young athlete leave the sport entirely. Maybe moving away from that tradition could be a good thing? The skill progressions, technique, and specialist knowledge required for gymnastics mean it will (and should) never be exactly like a sport such as youth baseball, but perhaps pulling in some of those aspects will be beneficial.

Exactly. I also think it helps eliminate some of the secrecy and insular nature that fosters some of the abusive situations. If there's always new eyes on a gymnast, if a gymnast's family is exposed to alternate ways of doing things, it may highlight when things are out of sorts.
 

MILgymFAM

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My daughter did have a coach once who forbid girls from working with anyone else- he and only he was allowed to coach “his” girls. My daughter asked if he could make an exception- due to our insane commute she missed a day of practice each week, and she had access to a willing (and free) tumbling-only coach. At the time tumbling was a big issue for her. He flat out refused. When she let the would-be tumbling coach know he had refused, he asked her “Why do you think? Is he afraid you’ll want to leave?” It was a joke at the time, but she did eventually leave and ended up training with the other coach (for T&T). He cared not an ounce who else she worked with, and she did work with two other programs while with him. The original coach is actually now on the permanently banned list, so the problems were deeper than we knew, but yeah..maybe his need for total control wasn’t healthy.
 
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kendo348

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My daughter did have a coach once who forbid girls from working with anyone else- he and only he was allowed to coach “his” girls. My daughter asked if he could make an exception- due to our insane commute she missed a day of practice each week, and she had access to a willing (and free) tumbling-only coach. At the time tumbling was a big issue for her. He flat out refused. When she let the would-be tumbling coach know he had refused, he asked her “Why do you think? Is he afraid you’ll want to leave?” It was a joke at the time, but she did eventually leave and ended up training with the other coach (for T&T). He cared not an ounce who else she worked with, and she did work with two other programs while with him. The original coach is actually now on the permanently banned list, so the problems were deeper than we knew, but yeah..maybe his need for total control wasn’t healthy.
Yes. Gyms justify this rule by saying they don’t want the athlete picking up bad habits or being trained unsafely or in ways counter-productive to their coach’s training plan, they want to keep a pulse on training hours for kids with CGMs who would otherwise hop around for constant privates to gain advantage until they burned out, and let’s be honest financial reasons as well... and I can accept all of those reasons to an extent but in a situation like you describe, the gym is viewing the athlete as property and the rule loses its minor usefulness and becomes harmful. In her situation it seems so irrational that he refused!
 

MuggleMom

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I will say though while there is the ability to train and do some things with other coaches in other sports its still a very jealous atmosphere. I have a good friend and her son does travel baseball when they left thier team there was drama! They had to secretly try out for the new team etc. The training part depending on the circumstances is maybe more common place but thats because there are facilities for training that arent neccisarily trying to get your "player" for their "team" where there isnt a facility for training for gymanstics like that (think batting cages or a pitching coach who likely doesnt coach a whole team he could "steal" you too) I think alot of gyms are fine with kids going to camps because camps dont have local teams that will "steal" you away. I think a lot of the drama around privates at another gym is the will you leave us worry. All sports should be about the kids but honestly looking around today its very much about parents and money--its sad and scary and I try not to go down that slippery slope and just do whats best for my kiddo.
 

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