My dd was always really tall for her age. I wonder if gymnastics does actually slow that down though. Before she did so much gymnastics she was literally off the growth chart for height - now she is in the 67th percentile (still tall but closer to average) and her weight is the 50th percentile.
My child has been consistently just below the 25th percentile curve on the CDC growth charts during her eight years in gymnastics, and I suppose she's fairly typical for her team. (Her smallest and most talented teammate quit the sport to play basketball.)
For those who might happen to be interested:
Collegiate and elite gymnasts certainly tend to be small, but they may not be as tiny as you'd think:
The two NCAA teams near my home feature gymnasts who range in height from 4-11 to 5-10; these gymnasts average around 5 feet 3 inches.
Elite gymnasts (or perhaps those on top NCAA teams--often former elites) might tend to be smaller than that group of collegiate gymnasts, but it's also true that the many of the elites haven't reached adult height; in particular, whether it's due to actual selection for small stature or due to rigorous training, female gymnasts who train long hours may have both a reduction in growth potential and be rather late in achieving full adult height (their skeletal age tends to be a couple of years behind their chronological age). They may experience catch-up growth after they retire. (For example, if you see Carly Patterson listed as 5-0, that was her height when she last competed, not her adult height.)
It takes a lot of training to produce much of a growth effect: Adolescents who train 15 or fewer hours per week don't typically show menstrual disturbances or delays in entering puberty, but 18 hours of athletic training each week is capable of attenuating growth.
Good references include:
Georgopoulos, NA, et al. 2004. Growth and skeletal maturation in male and female artistic gymnasts. J Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism 89(9):4377-4382
Theodoropoulos A, et al. 2005. Delayed but normally progressed puberty is more pronounced in artistic compared with rhythmic elite gymnasts due to the intensity of training. J Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism 90(11):6022-6027
Thanks for all the good info rbw. I know lots of college gymnasts who are on the taller side. I thought I had read somewhere that the average height of an Olympic gymnast was about 4'10". I don't worry about the growth thing. My pediatrician said my dd will most likely be about 5'8" - so even if it did stunt it a little she would still be tall enough, lol. My dd never had any elite aspirations so her height never was a factor - aside from her long legs making certain things harder to do.
I don't know much about the average height of Olympic gymnasts, but I happen to have found the listed heights of 80% of the female gymnasts at the 2004 games; they averaged 60 inches tall. That is pretty small: roughly the 5th percentile for growth.
Remember, though, that many of those gymnasts were young (40% of girls with listed heights were 16 or 17 years old), so many of them would continue to grow a bit--especially since elite female gymnasts show significant growth delays. The CDC growth charts indicate that height normally continues to increase until at least 20 years of age, where the chart ends. Who knows, on average that group may have reached, say, 5-1 at full growth (!)
BTW, the range I found was from 54 inches all the way up to 67 inches--almost as tall as your daughter will be. The tallest athlete listed, Isabelle Severino, clearly demonstrated that you don't have to be tiny to succeed in women's AG: She medaled at several European and World Championships, and she likely would have returned to compete in her third Olympics had she not torn her Achilles last month.
I did the ht predictor and Little Monkey will be 5'4" while big DD will "only" be 5'6" which I find interesting considering that she's always been on the tall side. Same predictor says my son (Little Monkey's twin brother) will be 6'
your child is 41 pounds, and that is at the 20th percentile for weight. your child is 42 inches, and that is at less than the 3rd percentile for height.
The height predictor said she would be 4'11.
I don't know how accurate it is because I had to make a guess for her birth parent's height (she's Chinese).
My boys all got into the height predictor. I have one son (he's 17), who is already 6'6, so it predicted he would remain at 6'6 (thank goodness!). The other boys were 5'11, 6'1, and 5'11. The 2 predicted at 5'11 were not happy! They want to be like their big brother. I guess time will tell how accurate this height predictor chart is! I was told by the pediatrician when my oldest was 2 years old that he would be 6'7---he almost nailed it, and who knows, he might grow one more inch.
My muscular, leggy, 11 year old gymnast comes out at 10th percentile for weight (69.5 pounds) and 12th percentile for height (55 inches).
Her Physio said that she would be likely to grow quite quickly now that she has dropped her hours so much.
Here is another website http://doigrowwell.com which is interesting as you can put in earlier dates and weights/heights and see what they look like on the graph. My DD's are exactly where they should be on the curve of the graph so I wonder if her Physio is right about the additional exercise having delayed her growth - surely this would be evident on the graph?
Bigger baby bog is 11 years and 9 months, weighs 90 pounds and is 60 inches tall (5 feet) She is on the 50% for both height and weight. Square as our pediatrician calls it!
She was always the little on in the gym until this year, she is growing as we watch. Glad it's summer or I'd be buying her new jeans every month!
Little Baby Bog is 9 years and 2 months, weighs 65 pounds and is 48 inches tall (4 feet) is on the 50% for weight and the 3rd for height (weird she's not a midget in her class)
She is very solid, tons of muscle on her and she loves to eat like a newborn, every hour on the hour!