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kristilyn73

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Jan 17, 2008
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My DD is competing her second year of Level 7 this year. Her coach has asked her to go to level 8 twice, but she made the decision to stay in 7. She wanted to have a year where she did well in meets and got good scores.

The problem we are having this year, is that DD is putting so much pressure on herself for high scores. We try to teach DD that it is not about the scores or medals. But it doesnt seem to be working. For instance, Yesterday:

Yesterday we had our 3rd meet of the season She scored her first ever 9! YIPPEE! 9.025 on Floor and placed 8th. That is fantastic! She will thrilled but that excitement didnt last

Vault was fine. She always struggles on vault. She got a 8.25, this is a .2 increase from last week. A postive. Then she went to bars. she didnt get credit for her cast being 45Degrees above horizontal from one judge. So her start value was a 9.5. You could tell that she was disappointed.

Finally on to Beam - typically her best event. She had struggled with back handsprings for weeks. She stuck her BHS it was so in our mind it should be a sucessful meet. Then she fell on her roundoff. Bobbled on her full turn and took a step on her dismount. She saluted the judges, walked over to her team and started crying.

Over and over we tell her it is not about the scores or medals. It is about doing your best and having a good time. But it seems we leave most meets with crying.

I am not sure how to handle this. I know part of the problem is that she is 12 and learning how to handle new emotions.

DD wants to go to State this year as a 7. She made it to state last year. But the qualifing score was changed from a 33 to a 35 this year. DD might not do it Her highest AA is a high 33. We explained that had she not fallen and had she gotten credit for her Cast she would have had a mid 34. And she has 6 meets left before state! She had pleanty of time. each week she is working hard in the gym and making the right adjustments. And we have to take the little sucesses. a 9 on Floor! A 8th place finish! A BHS without a 20 second pause before it?

How do I explain that to her? How do I stop the tears? It breaks me up inside, I would rather she not do the sport than be so hard on herself!
 

bogwoppit

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I know that this is very tough on you and her. My dd really has had similar experiences. Goes back to training just before a comp, has high hopes and then things don't go according to her plan. She doesn't cry, she has learned to put on her game face, but it really upsets her.

I told her that she is doing her best and that is all she can do, every girl who is competing wants the medals, no one sets out that day hoping to be 10th or 25th or last, they all want to be the best. That is just life. I always remind my daughter to look around her to see how many other girls are sitting on the floor with no ribbons or medals.

It does suck, but it is life and no body ever said life would be fair. Sadly.:(

My DD will not make Provincials, there are 276 in her level and only the first 32 can go regardless of scores, this is very tough, but a reality. Remind your DD that she has many chances to make the score, but that nothing will change if she doesn't make it. Girls who get to States/provincials do not wake up better people because of it. Reality is tough, but these are life skills that will help her deal with challenge and adversity as an adult.

My DD was also supposed to go up a level, but instead she is watching her team mates who have just come up to her level beat her on everything as she hasn't trained properly for so long.

It is very hard on them, all you can do is be supportive as long as she wants to compete. Try not to fall into the what if trap, there is nothing she can do about a fall or a wobble, it is not constructive for her to look back, better would be her visualising a perfect routine.

Parenting is never easy......
 

hunde2

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Nov 5, 2007
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Sounds like your DD made the right decision.My daughter along with 2 other teammates is trying out for Level 8 and it seems like the girls are under alot of pressure right now.There have also been alot of tears.Although when I asked my DD if she just wanted do stay at Level 7 for the rest of the season she told me that she really wanted to do Level 8.She knows her scores will not be that good.But she will be stronger next year.Her best events are floor and vault which she competed her Level 8 routines at their mockmeet and scored 9.2 on both events.
It also makes me feel bad when I see my DD cry.That's why I ask her if she really wanted to compete Level 8 or not.I also told her to stop being so hard on herself.Aslong she knows she tried her hardest.Not evey meet will be good.
 

gym law mom

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Believe me, I know what you're going through. Its so tough when they're all hyped up for a meet and then it just doesn't go the way they would like. My gymie always has to have a really quirky 1st meet of the season and then seems to settle in. This year, she is the baby on the team(L7) and at their 1st meet, she didn't get 1 medal(they only went out 5 places)---all the other girls on the team did. She didn't cry at the meet or at home---she just doesn't do that. She was rather droopy around the house the next day and I know she was upset at herself.

Before the next meet, her "little sister" gave her a great gift. She gave her a cute little journal that she could decorate and keep meet notes in etc. My gymie filled 1/2 page for that next meet and I've noticed she's written down about as much for her meet on Fri. She puts in nothing about scores---just things she wants to remember to do on each event. Their coach had a long talk with them after the 1st meet about doing good performances---don't even look at the numbers. 2nd meet, she was much more relaxed and consistent and her AA score came up by over a point. She didn't even know she got a 9.3 on vault---said she just didn't even bother to look at the score when it went up and was stretching out for bars. While we had some major issues with her previous coach at her 1st gym, he did have good advice, "don't look back at those scores because there is absolutely nothing you can do to change it---just focus on the next event."

I know that 35AA is just playing games in her head. That is an incredibly high state qualifying score. Ours is 33 and drops to 32 for L8-10. Tell her just to concentrate on the routine and do the best she can----if she can put the numbers out of her head, they will improve. Wouldn't be at all suprised to see your state lower that score as the season goes on. I'm sure she's not the only one who hasn't qualified yet.

BTW---Bog has some wonderful sage parenting advice. Life just isn't fair and its really hard to see your child have to learn it at such a young age.
 

gym monkeys mom

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Oct 3, 2007
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I also have a daughter competing level 7 this year. I also believe the State score of 35 this year is unreal!! I was told the number of Level 7 girls at State last year was way too many so they are trying to control number better.. However they may have to lower the score to get enough girls this year. My gymnast is struggling on her bars and we have begun to set small term goals for each event before each meet. I encourage her to do this with on each event but no score goals. I beleive scores are not something you can control. Judges do there very best but, they are only human so they could judge the exact routine a bunch of times and get different scores. I beleive that is just human nature for this reason setting goals that are skill based help girls measure how you are doing realisticly. Lets face it there will always be someone better we need our kids to enjoy the sport and do the best they can each meet. Having said that keeping encouraging your daughter being a teenage gymnast is hard thing. Remember to believe in yourself Being amom is not easy work. best of luck to your daughter!
 

catesmom

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Nov 9, 2007
220
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:D Wow- what great posts and heartfelt feelings! I love this site because it helps to share the anguish that we feel for our dd's, with others that feel our pain. Cate's such a perfectionist that she gets down on herself for the smallist things. She has been really struggling on bars all year, the level 6 routine is so tough for her. Watching videos on you tube, I so wish that our gym did the pre-op program. This is her second year of level 6 and her scores on the other events are great, it's just the bars that hold her back.

Thankfully her other scores have been high enough this year to at least allow her to place in AA. She placed 4th last week. That was with a 7.450 on bars. It is so hard to watch the girls work so hard and not be rewarded with medals. I know the medals are not the reason that they compete, but they are just little girls, and my dd's attitude is so much better after a high scoring meet. There are a few girls on the team that seldom receive medals and I kknow the whole team feels bad for them, it's a very closeknit team and they are all concerned about each other.

I hope the rest of the year of the year goes well for everyone!
 

Livinatthegym

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Feb 4, 2008
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These kids can be their own worst enemies. My dd1 beats herself up over every single error, even when she scores/places high. She's 14, built like an hourglass (as opposed to a cone) and is fast approaching the limits of what her body can do. She consistently hit 35-36+ last year as a level 7, but isn't doing nearly so well as an 8. She can't "get" a twisting or release bar skill. She can't get the tuck around on the vault and lands on her knees. Like your dd, mine is too hard on herself. This year, she has been suffering from stomach problems and headaches, probably related to stress (at least, no doctor can find a physical cause).

I made the decision to pull her from the sport rather than watch her continue to kill herself emotionally. Dd1's not happy with me. I've told the gym owner that we're definitely out by season's end, if not before. The only reason we're not done right now is because dd2 still competes (lvl 7) and dd1 would have to travel to all the meets anyway. I couldn't decide which would be harder on her, 2 more months of gymnastics or 2 months of not competing herself, but watching little sis. I've heard rumors that the girls will need a 36.5 to qualify for regionals this year. That won't happen, so at least that's one less decision to make.

Wish I could give you the "secret" that would stop your dd's tears, but I couldn't find it myself. You have my empathy, however.
 

mariposa

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i have no words of wisdom. just hugs for you and your DD. it is hard. i worry about this with my DD. i know she says she understands that it isn't about medals/trophies, but it has to be hard.

anyone get their daughters a trophy at the end of the season. i was thinking of doing this for my DD after her first season. getting one that just says her name, level 4 2008-2009 Awesome gymnast. or something similar.
 
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gymgramma

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We get our gymmie the "Cub Club Bear" that corresponds to the level she just got moved up to. We also get her the "Cub Club Bear" for each difficult skill once she has mastered it - such as the back handspring, kips, giants.

The team moms always get the girls on each team something to carry in with them @ march in at the state meet. it has usually been a stuffed animal for the compulsory teams and fresh flowers for the optional girls.
 

mariposa

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We get our gymmie the "Cub Club Bear" that corresponds to the level she just got moved up to. We also get her the "Cub Club Bear" for each difficult skill once she has mastered it - such as the back handspring, kips, giants.

The team moms always get the girls on each team something to carry in with them @ march in at the state meet. it has usually been a stuffed animal for the compulsory teams and fresh flowers for the optional girls.
i just googled them and they are great! will need a shelf for them though, or the toddler will get them and make them dirty. LOL.

i might get DD one of those when she officially moves to team/L4. it was supposed to be march, but who knows. i won't be sad if it isn't till summer. :eek: :D
 

kristilyn73

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Jan 17, 2008
1,326
Minnesota
Update! Another meet today. About the same as last week but no tears!! YIPPEE.

She had the same rotation as last week. First was Floor. It was a decent floor routine probably not quite as clean as last time but still pretty darn nice. 8.85.

Then on to vault - we really need some vaulting help. She is getting block. But she is breaking at the shoulders a bit. Vault score 7.8.

Bars - one of DD's meet goals was to get her cast requirement. I thought she did it but the judge saw something I didnt (that is why they are judges right?) as a matter of fact, none of her team got their cast requirement and I would have said 2 or 3 of them did for sure.

Finally beam yea! A stuck beam routine. A couple minor wobbles. but a satisfactory score of 8.55

She had the highest beam, floor and AA score of her Level 7 team. Didnt place on anything. But we didnt leave in tears. whew.

still dont think we are going to crack that 35 to make it to state this year.
But she is working hard and having fun - that is more important right?

Thanks for all your kind words!
 

bogwoppit

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Good for her, amazing how things slowly improve. Great to hear she had some personal "bests", that always helps.
 
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