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Is it better to go 1st or last in a competition?

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meesch7428

New Member
Aug 22, 2008
7
My DD was in the rough draft picked to go 1st in rotation for her gym....they changed it to make her go last....is that a good sign or a bad sign?

She is a rookie and she had finished
1st comp 4th overall
2nd, 3rd, 4th, 2nd overall and highest for her gym in comps

So this is States this weekend and they moved her to last and I am wondering if they are trying to tell us something making her go last....DH thinks that it has some meaning to it. He feels that they don't "appreciate" her like they do some other girls.

Thanks,
Mom to my favorite Rookie!
 

bogwoppit

Former Admin
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Feb 26, 2007
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We often save our best to last, the coach will place them as she expects them to score.
 

mariposa

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Sep 25, 2007
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Our better scoring gymmies usually go last as well. Sometimes either a strong girl starts off, or many times, the one that will score the lowest, which is many times my daughter. She doesn't mind going first except on beam. Lately though, she has been more towards the middle, so who knows. It sounds like in your DDs case, maybe they are expecting her to do well and sometimes scores DO go up as the meet/rotation goes on.
 

gymjourneymom

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Mar 9, 2008
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I agree with Bog & Mariposa, I think our coach has the ones he expects to score higest go last, as not to mentally psych-out their team mates. Not that they would be trying to do that on purpose. But the team mates might start thinking, "I'll never be able to do that well" type of thoughts.
 

gymch34

Member
Aug 2, 2008
322
east coast
It doesnt matter. There are lots of "strategies" as far as lineups go- but it REALLY doesnt matter at lower levels. In fact, many compulsory meets gymnasts compete in the order the computer puts them in, they wont let coaches change it. Judges 'rank' the routines, making sure the best one wins.

Sometimes, kids like to go 1st..... the only line up changes that I make at the lower levels are for vault or bar settings, or if I know a kid does better in a certain spot. I feel gymnasts should get used to competing anywhere in a line up- you never know when you are assigned to be 1st up, 1st flight on beam at states or regionals! Thats when you will be glad you have competed in that spot before.
 

lakshmi369

Member
Mar 4, 2008
97
Competition order

Everyone I think is right on. It depends on a number of factors including coaches phylosophy, who is judging, what the gym thinks they will see from meet to meet and sometimes just "gut" feeling from her coach.

I have seen basically two practices on who goes first:
1. Put your "steady Eddy" first to calm down any team jitters and get a solid lead off score.
2. Put your worst foot first with the thought that a judge will give higher scores to competitors after a possible low score from the gymnast going first.

First, last or anywhere in between I think every gymnast needs to be able to focus on their routines without regard to when they get to go. Long term you may see your DD go in every possible sequence you could dream of!:D
 
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flippersmom

Guest
DD coach is a judge and she really switched the order around at meets. Not sure why, I think she doesn't want the kids focusing on the order they are in. Vault she does put them in groups based on vault setting. I think she does try to put someone steady on the beam first. I think it's tough when you see the first couple of girls go up an maybe fall, it may play with the nerves. I think she wants them to be ready, no matter who is 1st. She is a very fair scorer when she judges, so I think she expect the same out of all the other judges.
 

meesch7428

New Member
Aug 22, 2008
7
My DD doesn't really care where she goes she actually never said a word about it LOL it was me and my hubby that were talking about it last night after we looked at the program online.
She actually just sits and chats with the girls and gets up when it is her turn and than goes back to talking to the girls like her performance is just a bleep on the radar....just the way I want it to be for her....no stress just having fun! :D
Thanks
 
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TeamDad

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At our gym, the coaches set the rotation order using the scores from the previous meet. Lower scores go first, higher scores go last on each event.
 

gym law mom

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Dec 23, 2006
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At many state meets, the order is set by a blind draw and the coaches have no say in who goes in what order. Also is like that at some of the big invitationals, so I wouldn't read too much into it.
 

gymdog

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Jul 5, 2007
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The conventional wisdom is you build to your strongest, but this is how we chose our order at the vast majority of meets I competed in: "I call third!" "I call fifth" "I call, um, um -" "I call second". I liked going first, because I don't like to wait.
 

gymjourneymom

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Mar 9, 2008
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The conventional wisdom is you build to your strongest, but this is how we chose our order at the vast majority of meets I competed in: "I call third!" "I call fifth" "I call, um, um -" "I call second". I liked going first, because I don't like to wait.
Yeah gymdog, my DD would agree with you! She'd rather just get it over with!:p
 

-CRAYOLA?

Member
Dec 4, 2008
100
Canada
In our gym we take the highest scores from each event at the last competition and the person with the lowest score goes first and the person with the highest score goes last. I wouldnt really read much into it . Seeing as how she is doing awesome !
And goodluck to her =]
 

pixie flips

Member
Sep 30, 2008
384
Region 3
It's funny that this topic came up.

My daughter's last meet was our home meet. And when her gym hosts meets the parents have to sign up to "work the meet". I chose to do the music for L5. Though, there weren't enough parents signed up so there hadn't been anyone assigned to do the music for L6. I just stayed on since it was immediately following the L5's.

Well, during the break between the two levels a judge came to the table where I was set up at and was talking to the lady who runs our gym (she was sitting next to me). The judge started complaining about the order that a couple of the coaches had put their girls in. She said that there was no rhyme or reason to the orders and some had put better girls to go first which messes them (the judges) up because it doesn't leave room for them to score up if they start with a high score. She went on to say that if they would start with the weaker gymnasts they know to score them less and go higher as the better girls come up.

I was appalled! So, I made it a point to watch the girl's scores for the floor as I was doing the music. I would start the music and then watch the screen as the previous scores would flash and sure enough, for the most part, the scores started low then got higher.

I think the judges should judge the individual gymnast according to how they have learned to judge the event and not worry about what order the gymnasts are placed in!
 
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TeamDad

Guest
I think the judges should judge the individual gymnast according to how they have learned to judge the event and not worry about what order the gymnasts are placed in!

I think what you're missing is that the judges are trying to get the placements right. If you watch enough, you'll find judges are pretty consistent. Whether the scores are high or low, consistency is what I always look for.

In other words, the score really isn't as important as the placement. For example, dd has scored as low as 9.000 on bars and as high as 9.500. Each score yielded the same result in placement.
 

I-Heart-Beam

Active Member
Sep 9, 2007
964
Scotland
I hated having three good events before hitting vault and realising I actually didn't have a chance to medal... so vault for me.

We go alphabetical order in our gym, and then reversed the next meet. Didn't bother me though! It seemed mainly the parents who freaked out over what event and what place you were in to start!
 

pixie flips

Member
Sep 30, 2008
384
Region 3
I think what you're missing is that the judges are trying to get the placements right. If you watch enough, you'll find judges are pretty consistent. Whether the scores are high or low, consistency is what I always look for.

In other words, the score really isn't as important as the placement. For example, dd has scored as low as 9.000 on bars and as high as 9.500. Each score yielded the same result in placement.
Sorry, but I completely, 100%, disagree. Yes, consistency is important but I feel that the judges should not worry about placement. If they judge the routine according to the way they are supposed to, then placement will naturally fall in place and take care of itself.
 
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TeamDad

Guest
Sorry, but I completely, 100%, disagree. Yes, consistency is important but I feel that the judges should not worry about placement. If they judge the routine according to the way they are supposed to, then placement will naturally fall in place and take care of itself.

Completely understandable. If only everything could be black and white.

I'm sure if the judges were to take every single deduction by the book, we wouldn't see very many scores in the 9's and alot more in the 6's and 7's. Next time one of our dd's gets a score of 6.000, we should thank the judge for doing it the way it's supposed to be done:D

Point is, I don't think it's as easy as you make it sound. Things are flying by very fast. Can you say that a judge can or will 'see' everything? You should try it sometime, and I don't mean on video, I'm talking live. Try scoring 50 routines live in real time, then play them back on video and score them again. Them play them back a second time and score them a final time.

Now check to see if you scored each routine exactly the same every time. After you try this exercise, please let me know if you have a newer appreciation of what the judges do and/or are trying to do. At the end of the day, it's most important that the right girls are on the podium in the correct order. This of course can be speculative, but it's just the way one judge sees it. It might not be perfect, but what is? As long as there's consistency, it usually works out the way it should.

I'm not saying that everyone will always be happy, but I think it is fair and equatable.
 

gym law mom

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Dec 23, 2006
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To me the judges should not be worrying about placement---just giving an accurate score. At many meets, you can have girls from 1 team put in 3 or 4 different age groups, so a 9.0 for 1 girl might be a 7th in her age group and 3rd in another.

My gymmie has gone in 1st, last and in between. Her L6 season, the coach used her alot to "set up the team" on bars and that would mean putting her up 1st. Then he would put a few of the "weaker" bar workers up right after her and then build with the last 3 girls. At the Judge's Cup, she was told to be the "team setter" on bars and scored a 9.2. Nobody on her team beat that and she ended up winning bars in her age group----we then found out that 9.2 was the highest score on bars for the whole meet. That seemed to be more of a case of the judges giving out the score they felt the routine deserved and not going by the order of the girls.

I have seen parents go nuts when their precious dd isn't put up last. You would think the world had ended. I think there may be a little too much emphasis on rotation order especially at the lower levels.
 
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TeamDad

Guest
Hey GLM,

I stopped trying to figure the scoring out a long time ago. I've definitely seen some parents freak out at a lower than usual score. Really, it is what it is. In state, I pretty much know what to expect...it's those out of state meets that can be a real crap shoot...and of course every once in a while there is one of those meets where the home team seems to do unbelievably well.

Oh yeah, I just remembered that when dd was a L4, they used to line up and compete by height. Ah, the good old days. That was too cute for words.
 
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