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CoachLin

New Member
Jun 29, 2007
41
Canada
Anyone have any Ideas?
I have an athlete who I have coached for several years now and happens to be the most advanced athtlete in her group. The problem is, that this year the group she is in is a group of new girls who will be competing at a beginner level and she has got it stuck in her head she doesn't want to/have to work her regular skills because the other girls "don't have to do those things".

The athlete is young, 7 years old and is also my daughter. I have coached her since she was 2 yrs old and no problems. Our club is small and I am the only competitive coach there, so not coaching her is not an option.

Any ideas on how i can get her back into training what she was working on before she got stuck in a group of newbies?? ( it was really not my idea, but i don't get to decide...)

Thanks!!
 
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nevertooold

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Can you use the skills that your daughter is working on as a reward for any of the other girls so that she sees it as something that she GETS to do instead of HAS to do?
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I also coach my own 2 daughters. You have to be able to separate what YOU want for them, from what THEY want for themselves. They have to own it. That can be hard at 7. Does she have another option if she didn't want to do gymnastics? Can she stay home when you are at the gym or play in another area of the gym if she didn't want to do class? That gives you the option of letting her know, this is your workout program if you want to stay on team, and if you do not to comply with your workout plans then you can stay home, play in the break room, take a rec class, etc. Then you have to be willing to live with her choice if she doesnt' want to do the workout you set for her.

The other option at 7, is to just let her do the easier skills that the other girls are doing, she will probably tire of that pretty quickly, esp. if she sees any of them improving and has a competitive streak. If she doesn't have a competitive streak, what's the harm in letting her do the easier skills and just enjoy herself?
 

CoachLin

New Member
Jun 29, 2007
41
Canada
Thanks,
The other girls are in no way able to do the program my daughter is doing...she is working on preping for PNN for next season (novice pre-national). The other girls barlely level 3. So she is basically training on her own, which is a REAL BUMMER when you are such a young age....I do have special rewards I give to all the girls for jobs well done, new skills learned/masterd, etc....

I do agree with you though that after a while of doing some of the lower level skills, she will probably tire of it, and want to get back into the swing of things. There is a huge difference from doing handstand front rolls to training BHS tucks.

And yes if she doesn't want to follow program, she can always go to Grandma's house for a few hours untill I am done at the gym. It is just a little frustrating as I have never had to deal with this before....
 
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nevertooold

Guest
I do understand the frustration, esp. if you know she is capable. It is challenging to coach your own children and I know many people do not think it is a good idea, but despite the challenges it can be a wonderful way to share something you both love. Hang in there, if she really loves the sport she will come around, she is young.

Another idea would be (and sorry don't know if your girls are reading well yet) to do the things that they all do together, stretching, conditioning, basics and then have paper lists for each girl of her "specials" and how many of each she needs to complete. If you are able at all to differentiate in the other girls, like are there a couple that could work a slightly harder skill than the others, then your dd may get the idea that they ALL have special things to work on instead of her being the only one.

Another idea would be to give her choices but only from a group of skills that you want her to work. It might help to give all the girls choices so that she feels like she is getting the same treatment.

Just curious, are there other girls in the gym at her level but she is not allowed to work out with them?
 

bogwoppit

Former Admin
Gold Membership
Former Gymnast
Feb 26, 2007
16,709
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Canada
I am not sure where you live in Canada, but I do understand the huge gap in skills that you are dealing with.

Is it possible to find a gym where a couple of times a month you could take your DD to train with girls more her level. You could use it as a reward for hard work in the gym. I know that big gyms in Montreal (not that you are here) allow that as it really helps develop young atheletes from smaller clubs.

To motivate such a young child to do the harder skills whilst she sees her peers doing the easy stuff is a challenge, perhaps with a little carrot she might be more motivated.
 

MissBear

Coach
Coach
Gymnast
May 4, 2009
176
I agree with differentiated training - even if all the other girls are of similar skill level (to each other) they must each be stronger of different events. With our younger team groups there is a vast range of ability also. One thing that is very helpful on beam is after the complex each gymnast has to come to you to find their assignment e.g. 10 stuck BWO on middle beam. Once this is done they must show you one, and they you give the next assignment. You could give your daughter her skills, and the other girls could work on different things e.g. one could have her dance skills first. another could have her acro first, another could have mounts and dismounts.
The only problem with this is that if they are a large group a shy gymnast who isn't getting a skill could spend a long time on one skill - but if you make sure you keep an eye on everyone it's pretty good. It can also get boring if you only use this technique all the time.
 

CoachLin

New Member
Jun 29, 2007
41
Canada
Thanks again everyone!
Over the past few weeks I have just let my daughter go at her own pace and see what would happen and she has gotton REALLY bored working at the other kids level....I did however show her some VIDEOS of training from the summer when she was still working on her more difficult skills ( giants on bars, her high bar sequence, and vault timers) and it really sparked a fire in her.

It was really great to go into training yesterday (saturday) and have HER ask me " can I work on tsuks today" and " I WANT to do my giants" and to see a big smile on her face after and hear her say " That was fun."

She is still having a bit of an issue with beam, but i'm sure we'll get through it, beam is also her least favorite event. Vault and bars are the favorite....
I did give her a two week break from training, one because she was sick and the other to see what she really wanted to do. I think it made a big difference.
 
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