For Parents Encouragement or pressure?

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Former Admin
Gold Membership
Former Gymnast
Feb 26, 2007
Oh I wouldn't worry too much. Coaches do say things on the spur of the moment, just like parents. I know our coach told BB that "she was so close to her kip that she has it!", of course here we are two weeks later and still no kip. It was said in a positive way and I don't think as pressure.

Don`t tell Bean, but if she hits her routine at Provincials she sure could win beam, but who knows eh.

Can`t wait to see that routine though.


Active Member
Proud Parent
Apr 14, 2009
Region 8
I think it dpends on the kid. I know my DD feels the pressure. Her coach is already telling her that she has a great shot at making L7 regionals. I think that she shouldn't even be talking regionals at this point. She doesn't even have her beam routine OR bar routine yet. How about getting those choreographed. LOL! Only the top 16 scorers at the state meet make regionals. This is all ages combined. I've already told her NOT to count on it so that way if/when she does't make it it won't be such a huge disappointment.


That sounds more like encouragement than pressure to me. He is telling her that she has the ability to win and giving her confidence. We all know that half the game is confidence in your abilities. It's the power of positive thinking!

My dd's coaches are not very good at doling out praise, I'm afraid. I think the most she gets is "good job, but next time try _______." Nothing ever seems quite perfect enough. It sounds like Bean has a great coach!


Midget's Dad

Sounds like encouragement to me. And it sounds like she took it that way. Some of that depends on the gymmie too.

Midget's coach tells us stuff like, "Midget is going to be my star" all the time but would never do that in front of her because with her it would be pressure. I remember her talking to a parent that was over-pressuring her gymmie to do well. She said, "At this age very few kids are feeling the pressures of competing unless their parents or coaches are putting it on them so stop. Either they get it later or they don't but right now they need to be having fun. I have 2 girls under 10 that do push themselves that way, Bella and Ashleigh, and we have to be even more careful with them."

And she is right, Midget is on herself so hard all the time that we are all very careful not to add to it.

Luckily for you it seems like Bean does not have that type of personality.


Hmmmm, that's a tough one - on the one hand I do see it as encouraging, but you're right, it does have the potential to backfire. IMHO, as I see my dd getting older, the stakes get a bit higher and there definitely seems to be more presssure - mostly in our case pressure she puts on her self, but pressure none the less....I have certainly complained in the past that I feel our coaches don't hand out enough praise/encouragement (although that is changing), but I can also see why they don't do it......and as a parent of another child who may be same age/level, I wouldn't want my athlete to be hearing a coach say that to one of my teammates (not to take anything away from Bean, she really is a talented gymnast, no doubt about it!).

It sounds like this was a comment that was said "in the moment" (and probably is truly how the coach feels :)) so I think unless it happens on a regular basis I would just let my dd feel happy and proud and pumped, and let it go at that!



Proud Parent
Proud Parent
Sep 25, 2007
I agree with Sparky, it could be seen as both. It depends on how Bean took it and what her expectations of herself are, etc. I don't think I would ever say that to my daughter even if I thought it, because I would hate for her to believe it and then for some reason have it not happen. Does Bean take things literally and believe everything the coaches say? If so, I would maybe talk to her about it and see how she took it. If not, then I wouldn't worry.

I do think that her beam rocks and can't wait to see her this season!


Active Member
Proud Parent
Mar 9, 2008
Another child may have found that comment stress inducing. But it sounds to me like Bean took it as encouragement & that's what really matters. I think it all depends on the relationship they have. From your other posts I gather that her & her coaches have a very good relationship, family like. Sounds like she hit some wonderful routines in practice & the coach was excited for Bean. I think even though Bean is young, she realizes there are no guarantees in this sport & just b/c the coach says it...doesn't mean the judges will. I think they all learn that at their 1st meet or so, LOL! But just having that vote of confidence, has got to feel great!! The coach just let her know that her beam routine is really that good & that goal is within her reach. Can't wait to see the vid!!!!:D


Active Member
May 27, 2009
Region 6 (Northeast)
It didn't sound like the coach was out of line as they are only human being proud of his/her "product". I think the effect all depends on the child and you know your child better than anyone of us. But, even with you, she may not display her true feelings or you may not be able to read it.

My daughter is definitely that way. She always acts like she doesn't care even when the same kind of reference is made to her about her performance. I think it's her way to shield herself from disappointment because she have had her share of crying whenever something went wrong when she was younger. For her, that works. It's her own way of handling "expect the worse and hope for the best".

So, coming back to your gymnast, no matter what was said to her and how it was meant, I think pressure can only come from within (unless she has the in-you-face type of coach). Yes, it was likely taken as an expectation from the coach and there must have been pressure as a result. Any logical kid would know the outcome will come down to the performance and how she is judged on that day. It's really up to her to figure out how to handle that pressure, if there is any. She is a few years younger than mine so it might take her a bit of time to get there.
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I agree that it depends on the person. From what I've read about Bean, she is a resilient, well-adjusted person with inner confidence. While this comment might put too much pressure on some, I would suspect that she may just take it as a matter of course. She is an excellent gymnast, after all, and, to excel in the area of one's talent takes not only talent, but that inner pressure/expectation that NotAMom was talking about.
Also, I think a lot depends on the exact phrasing of the comment. Phrases such as "You will/must win" or "I expect you to/will win" are different, IMO, than, "You have a chance to win" or "You could win." There may not be much difference, but I believe it's there. Bean must already know that she has a chance to do really well, and she's probably excited about that. Maybe the coach was just sharing in her excitement instead of trying to set expectations.
Perhaps you could talk gently to the coach about your concern. This is, after all, a totally legitimate one.


Active Member
Proud Parent
Mar 1, 2007
YIKES! have to post a quickie since I have all three to get out for school...but I think it would depend on HOW the coach said it. I mean, I am sure coaches grow attached to girls like a parent and are honestly proud of them. But being a coach and also knowing their potential I could see where the comment could have slipped, but more so in an encouraging gee you've been working so hard in that beam, you are doing so well, I can see you winning! Now, if coach kept saying THAT comment like "come on Bean, you can do better, I know you can win that beam...." and being all manipulative like that then I could see the negative in it. But all you've posted here, I am thinking it as more just a proud and encouraging coach. Bean doesn't seem like one to be stressed about it does she?


I'd take that as encouragement, but I know some kids would really feel pressured by it. Glad she's doing so well too!


Active Member
Jun 26, 2006
Ontario, Canada
Thanks for all the helpful insight!

Bean has her own goals, and looks quite a bit further than 1 competition at a time, so I don't think this will truly weigh her down. She does, however, really, really want to please her coach. Hopefully she'll be ables to use it as a simple motivator, and not see it as anything other than straight encouragement.

More often than not, it's mom doing the over-thinking:)

Sparky, I can see how that statement could cause friction if there was another child her age and level, fortunately, she's the only one. (though I wish that would change!)
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