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For Parents My 5-year old invited to pre-team! Now what?

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M

MasterPuppeteer

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So on Saturday, my 5 yo DD's rec coach took me aside before class and said she has spoken to the girls' pre-team coach and has cleared the way for DD to join, if we are interested that is. The pre-team class is once a week for 1.5 hours long on Wednesday nights.

Already DD goes to two hourlong rec classes, one on Thursday nights and the other on Saturday mornings. She enjoys going to both classes.

My question: cost and scheduling issues aside, should I take DD out of one of her rec classes and just put her in one rec and the pre-team class? Or is it okay (or better?) to leave her in her two rec classes and just add the pre-team class? I'm concerned about physical burnout/overuse at such a young age. I'd love to hear from more experienced parents.

Thanks for weighing in!
 

bogwoppit

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Congratualtions.....

If it were me I'd do the preteam class on Wed and keep the Saturday rec class as she loves it, that way you are adding only 30 minutes a week, but you are also putting her in a group that is preparing for team.

If that goes well I would consider reinstating the Thursday class if she is still begging for more. Slowly introducing increased hours would make sure that she is enjoying the class and not doing too many hours for her.
 

Blackie6

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My DD did Pre-team at age 5 only it was 4 hours/week (two 2 hr sessions) so she got her gym "fix' with that. You may want to keep one of the rec classes if she is having a good time and used to the time. That way she is in a prep class but also having fun!
 

mariposa

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I would probably drop one of the rec classes. She is used to going 2 times a week, so adding a half hour won't be a big deal. I would probably just go from there. Once she is on pre-team, they might have different levels in pre-team and soon she may be doing that 1.5 hour class 2 times a week, etc. Hope she loves the challenge of her new class! My DD had just turned 5 a few months before going to a pre-team class that was 2 times a week, 1.5 hours each time and she had no problems at all. She loved the challenge and learning new skills. :D
 

gym law mom

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See if she can try the pre-team class before signing up or dropping a rec class and see how she likes it and how it is structured. They may go all out for 90 minutes and be more intense than what she's used to. If she likes it and the coaches don't feel she would get confused by doing a rec class(different coaches teach skills in different ways) then you can always keep her in the Sat. rec class until she gets more time in the pre-team class.
 

Aussie_coach

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Congratulations to your DD, she must be doing very well and have quite a natural talent for gymnastics.

In most cases Pre team is the way to go. Your daughter may be enjoying her rec classes now but she will reach a point in her training where she can go no further with the rec program. The team program in most gyms is the best way to continue with their training to their full potential.

In my opinion once a week gymnastics is not enough for young developing gymnasts. Little kids have short memories and attention spans. You find when you teach them only once a week and they have 7 whole days until they train again a lot is forgotten. Twice a week is better for retention, so I would definatly do the pre team and at least 1 of the two rec classes. As for doing the third class, the classes are short and as long as she is enjoying herself then it is unlikely she will burn out by doing 3 a week, if she isnt enjoying the training then she will but if she comes home with a smile on her face and talks about when the next class is you are pretty safe.

However, your own burn out is an issue too. I have seen many parents nurn out faster than their kids. Are you prepared to take her three times a week, how will it effect your own scedule with work, your other children if you have any, household responsibilities and so on. Are you prepared to sit there throughout each class.

Her hours with team will increase as she goes through the levels and she will eventually need to drop the rec classes altogether but by the time this happens she will probably have fallen in love with team and made many friends there and be happy to make the transition.

You may also need to chat to the gym about their requirements. Some gyms will not allow their team kids to train in rec classes. Sometimes because of the coach/gymnast ratio. When a child is moved up they may prefer to then open up their space in the rec class for newer kids. Sometimes because the training may be counterproductive. Ofetn the team coaches are more experienced (not always but often) and would prefer to supervise all area's of a young gymnasts development to make sure they dont develop incorrectly at this crucial time, a bad habit that is trained up at 5 can cause serious problems at 10 and so on. Sometimes because their training programs are very carefully put together to develop muscle at an appropriate rate. So you need to make sure it is ok with your gym fr your daughter to do this.
 
M

MasterPuppeteer

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Thanks, folks! My first inclination was to keep the Saturday morning class and drop the Thursday night class, and I'm glad to know that some of you share my thoughts. I'm still waiting for a callback from the pre-team coach and we'll probably follow her recommendation (unless it's something extreme of course, like "add 2 more rec classes").

And yes, we have been invited to try out the pre-team class first to make sure it will be a good fit for DD. She'll be going on Jan. 5!
 

Ingymmom

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Jul 12, 2007
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First off congratulations to your dd :D sounds like she is hooked, and having a great time... Everyone gave such great advice already - but I just wanted to add from a different perspective. My dd was 5 when she joined pre-team as well. She only had a 1 hour a week rec class prior to, and when they asked her to join pre-team it was going to be 6 hours a week - YIKES... I was very nervous, but we decided to try it out after weeks of begging :p. Some kids thrive on more gym time - and my dd was one of them. Now, 2 years later (and 16 hours a week) I literally have to drag her from the gym everyday - she is still going strong and still loving it. Now, in our case we needed to drop the rec class - as rec is so different than comp team, and our coaches would not have allowed it, but definately check with the pre-team coaches and get their advice - and follow your own little ones as well :D. She will give you tell tale signs if it is too much (or too little). Good luck to you guys, and as we all like to say - get that check book ready :p

This reminds me, my 2 year CB anniversary must be coming up LOL... because this must be around the time I joined - shortly after my dd joined pre-team :)... we have soooooo many new "faces" now. I remember there were only a few of us back then!
 
Last edited:
Jan 22, 2008
437
Congrats. I have to say you have gotten great advice. DD did pre-team last year at the age of 4. We did 4 hours a week and there wasn't any burn out plus we a did 2-3 hours of open gym. Follow your gymmies lead and see where it goes. I would talk to the pre-team coach about the req class. I would personally put that money into privates rather than the req classes, but that is just me.
 
Aug 7, 2008
118
Congrats to your dd! I agree that you have gotten some great advice so far! My dd is 4 and is on pre team - she loves it! I was a little nervous about moving her up as well , but she loved having the extra gym time. She would be there every single day if she could and its amazing how much they can learn in such a short period of time. Best of luck to your dd!
 
S

starmaker

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Congrats to your dd for making pre team!!:D I too have a young team gymmie. When she had just turned 4 years old they asked her to join preteam and was going 3 times a week for a total of 6 hours. She loved it! At 4.5 years old we switched to a more competitive gym and her hours increased to 9 hours a week. Now a year later at 5.5 years old she still goes 9 hours a week but on off school days joins the morning program and is there from 9am - 4pm. She perfers morning program to evening classes. She too does better with more gym hours. It seems the more she does, the more she loves it!! Last week since there was no school she went to team camp and did 18 hours. She hasn't been to gym for 3 days and is telling me she is ready for team camp again. I will probally send her mon. and tues. I usually let her lead the way! Sometimes though I have to draw the line, though. For instance she is asking to be homeschooled (so she can do morning program). I tell I will discuss that when she is 2nd grade and she tells me that kindergaten is boring and wants to do it now....:eek: It makes me feel better knowing she wants more. I too have worried about burn out but she is soooo happy now I try not to worry!
 

gym mom

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Sep 8, 2007
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florida
congrats to your little one!my dd was 6 1/2 when she started team 2 she had been doing a rec class for an hour a week and I was worried about her if she could handle going twice a week for a total of 4 hrs,every time that she moves up a level I worry she will be moving to l5 sometime this spring or summer and I am again worried if she can handle the 4nights a week and she will be 9 by then.I would talk to the coach about the rec class our rec classes are alot diff then the team and I do not think they would have aloud her to do both.
 

Mom2GymMonkey

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Dec 29, 2008
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Congratulations to your DD! What a great compliment from the coach. :)

My DD (7) is moving to pre-team also. She started a year ago with just one hour of gymnastics and 1.5 hours of cheer/tumbling per week at the same gym. When she moved to the next level, we dropped cheer and she was doing one class 2 hours and then did recreational (non-tumbling) cheer through a seperate program. With pre-team, she will be going 2 nights per week, 3 hours per night, so we have now cut out everything else because it is clear this is where her heart, mind and focus are!

She found out she would move to pre-team just before the holidays and has been practicing like crazy over the break! She got a beam and bar for her bday and a mat for Christmas so she has been doing daily workouts. LOL SHe has even been getting her brother down on the mat to workout and stretch every night.

I appreciate hearing everyone's advice and suggestions since we are in the same spot. I think that your DD will guide you. If she is practicing at home and working out on her own, then doing 2-3 nights a week will probably not be an issue for her, but I agree about parental burn out needing to be considered. I am a little concerned because DS has to be at basketball practice the same night as one of DD's pre-team practices. But, we will find a way to make it work. I obviously can't be in 2 places at once, but I think my brother will take DS to basketball. (At least I hope he will! LOL)

Good luck! I keep getting scared when I hear all the comments about cost, but I can't imagine a better way to spend the money than giving my daughter the self-confidence and skills that I believe she is building through gymnastics!
 
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