For Coaches I crowed, now to be realistic...

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emacmommy

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For my daughter's sake (MoJo) I was so happy to see her place well, but to be quite honest she's a second year L4 and many of my L4 squad competed 1/2 a season last year (large mid season move up is unusual) so we didn't have many true first timer 4's this year. We have a winter state meet for compulsories and then compete invitationals through the spring so we can fairly easily manage a mid season move. We usually only do it for a handful amongst all levels, but our last year 3's had such the learning curve last year we had to let the momentum carry. So far it is working in our favor as we have a fairly confident L4 team and both my two truly newbies placed in the top four on at least two events each. Both myself and my co-head coach are very pleased with the start of the year.

I still have huge concerns for my own MoJo. I just don't see drive, motivation and a sense of caring about how she does. She obviously is fairly talented amongst her peers. Focus has always been a HUGE issue. She can go through the motions cleanly, but that's it, she just goes through the motions, especially on beam. Once again she wins, but if you could picture an athlete looking off in the distance glancing here and there, NOT FOCUSING ON THE BEAM, that's my Mo (Moira is her real name if you were wondering).

She is often just going through the motions in practice, just enough to finish assignments with no real care to finesse, hardly ever making the corrections we repeatedly say over and over again, barely finishing to extension, the same amount of effort each turn, next to no change. It's become a frustration for girls who work so hard and struggle with improvement. I had Mo in a group that ended up working independently on RO BHS on Trak, when my co-coach had to step away for a family emergency at the end of practice and I was working with the Optional girls. In order for those girls to be dismissed they had to show me their work with perfect form. I made the first two repeat their turn because I knew they could do better, Mo went and it was great and I dismissed her, a few others I dismissed too. One of the girls struggling with her form approached me and said she felt it wasn't fair Mo got excused because she hardly took any turns and was sitting down while the girls were working independently. At the time I didn't know this as my back was to that group most of the time, while I was spotting BHS on beam. I didn't exactly know what to tell her. I reprimanded Mo afterwards for not working, but she did jump through the immediate hoop of showing my perfect form for that one turn. Then BLAH! on tumbling form this meet... just going through the motions.

We've had a lot of talks about "wanting" to improve and not just "being". I've asked if she really "LOVES" gymnastics, that she shouldn't just do it because I want to. I believe her answers to be genuine when she says this is what she loves to do. I can see the panic in her eyes and hear it in her voice when I have her think of life without and what she would do. I did put her in ballet for this winter session and she really loves that (surprisingly) and she loves to sing, but is shy about her voice. Her father and I have been encouraging her efforts in those departments as well, putting our parental feelers out to make sure she is in her own niche, however I still have the gym issue.

She was quite content, hardly disappointed, when we put our foot down and said no kips... no L5. That attitude disappointed me that she didn't seem to care. She IS having a lot of fun, very true, and that is why she "LOVES" gymnastics. She's part of my performance squad which gives her a total out of the box gymnastics experience too. We have a lot of fun with girls who don't have as much to carry them through competitive gymnastics but love it none-the-less. A lot of trampoline, mini tramp, and basic acro.

Hey this is starting to read like a book and has some aspects of parent input too, so I think I'll post this in the Parent Formum as well.

Any insight would be great!
 
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