For Coaches How do you handle gymnasts that...

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gymmom14

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May 21, 2008
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do well (9 and up) on three events, but struggles on one(highest score is an 8.0)

Any ideas to help her catch up? She is training level 6. Is it better to repeat 5 to try and catch up on bars or watch her struggle through level 6 bars and do well in the other 3 events? Her coaches have never mentioned repeating 5, but when does she catch up?
 
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cftmoonlight

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Jan 31, 2008
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do well (9 and up) on three events, but struggles on one(highest score is an 8.0)

Any ideas to help her catch up? She is training level 6. Is it better to repeat 5 to try and catch up on bars or watch her struggle through level 6 bars and do well in the other 3 events? Her coaches have never mentioned repeating 5, but when does she catch up?
If I was in charge she would do level 5 again. Bars especially is so hard and level 6 is tough. Doing more level 5 bars would help her strengthen her kips and casting, as well as her swing.
 

gymdog

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It's really hard to say what I would do. If she was ready on three events then it would generally seem appropriate to me to give her the summer to train L6 and evaluate where she is after that. As well, I think she should be aware of the concrete things she needs to achieve on bars in order to compete L6 (i.e. these skills to this degree, correcting these problems) and exercises she can work on in order to gain strength and flexibility.

My highest L5 bar score was an 8.0 and I'm pretty sure I got through my entire level 6 season without ever even getting an 8 on bars...my L6 bars were interesting to say the least, it would probably take a lot of time to go into all the specific problems. :) Did not repeat L5 or L6 as I showed enough improvement on bars (clean cast HS, free hip HS, giant - although I ended up competing free hip HS flyaway that year because the giant wasn't that great - and a good layout flyway). I got a 9 something on bars at L7 state and third place. The next year in L8 I averaged a 9.3 and scored as high as 9.65 (1st place) at L8 state. So I'm not that down on it but my problems were admittedly a little more unusual maybe than the ones most people struggle with on bars. Since I went to kind of a rec gym until I was a L6, I never officially learned a tap swing until I moved to L7, and my wonderful, beloved 7 and 8 coach taught me everything in a relatively short time period :) Those other two years we had kind of shuffled through a few coaches and I think they all figured I'd been taught a tap swing and was just unfortunate, I don't know. Most of my group who had always been on a team track had good bar basics, so I think I just looked like someone who wasn't catching on or something, lol.

My other events were pretty advanced for a L5 because the coaching at the rec gym was good, we just lacked bars equipment and did not work on it a lot. I also struggled with the connections because I hadn't really ever worked on connecting kip-cast exactly, since we didn't really work on routines like that. I got moved up probably basically because I was already a L6 on everything but bars in L4 since I had just been learning skills the years before and had BWO on beam, had worked BHSs, had BT, FT, and aerials on floor. I was older because I hadn't come through a pre team track and very driven to move up. I guess it would come down to a lot of things, like age, the specific problems (lack of strength vs lack of basic technique), how the gymnast feels about it/personality (perhaps because of the weakness, moving up would be a lot of pressure and the gymnast would rather address the weakness at L5 where she will also see success on other events), like any move up there are very individual circumstances that need to be addressed.
 
A

awposey1

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Bars tends to be a critical event and one of the ones that a lot of kids struggle on. In optional there are certain things you really need and the basics help a lot. Your coaches may be able to give you the best advice about if another year doing level 5 would help. My DD did 2 years of level 5 and did much better the second year and I think that really helped her in optional (she is level 10 now).
 

lannamavity

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Sep 13, 2007
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way out West
Bars tends to be a critical event and one of the ones that a lot of kids struggle on. In optional there are certain things you really need and the basics help a lot. Your coaches may be able to give you the best advice about if another year doing level 5 would help. My DD did 2 years of level 5 and did much better the second year and I think that really helped her in optional (she is level 10 now).
Without a doubt, I would never move up an athlete who can't at least break an 8.5 on every event. I don't care if they score 9.5's on every other event. The minimum requirements on each event are what determines a move up. An athlete who can't break an 8.5 has something significantly wrong with their routine, and the problem will be amplified when that athlete tries to do a more difficult routine.

Parents of Level 10 athletes can be a wealth of knowledge when it comes to repeating levels...they have hindsight that no compulsory parent (no matter how well-read/researched) can have.


Another year of 5 would be a good chance to catch up.
 
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Aussie_coach

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It is fairly common for a gymnast to struggle on one apparatus, while doing firn on the other three. Unfortunatly the gymnast can get a bit of a mental block about that apparatus and start to think to themselves "I'm just no good at bars", "I'll never get it". This nagative thinking can be very damaging to their success. So it is very important to recognise their successes on that apparatus and their achievements and improvements.

Repeating level 5 will depend on quite a lot of factors. First of all just how good is she on the other three, if she is outstanding o those three apparatus it can often lift her all around score enough to still score well. It may also mean she gets bored repeating for just one apparatus. But that will depend, during comp season do your girls mainly just train their own comp skills or do they train the harder skills aswell. If they dont train up she may get bored which can make the bars even worse.

When you say bad, how bad?
 

JBS

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It depends on the structure of your gym. In the gym I'm at now, I would move here up. Normally they can catch up some once that start working out with the Level 6 team.

Our Level 6 bars workout is 100 times more intense than our Level 5 bar workout. My girls really like bars even though it is there hardest event. While 45 minutes seems to be plenty on most events, we regularly run 75+ minutes on bars with the girls still not wanting to stop.
 
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