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Not sure how to handle this

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MissM

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Mar 24, 2016
3
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I have a L5 kid that is an amazing kid, lots of fun, very talented, and hilarious. She's also disrespectful, rude, and bullies one of her teammates (just the one, the youngest on the team). All in all she's out of control.

I like this kid lot but it's quite obvious that she has no rules at home so when I hold her to my expectations at the gym it is met with mouthiness and, since I don't tolerate disrespect, she is sent to sit out for ten minutes a pop on a fairly regular basis. No more than two time outs in a practice, then off to do extra strength if it continues. My biggest concern is that whenever we are trying to work, she isn't- to the point of distraction for the rest of the team. If we're stretching, she's talking. If we're doing static position holds, she's laying around. When we are doing skill basics she's sneaking off to the trampolines (and doing dangerous things). If we're doing skill repetitions she's bouncing around and goofing off. If we're moving between stations she's sneaking back to trampolines again. When I try to rein her in its always met with an eye roll and some sort of rude comment. When I try to step it up a notch (time outs and extra strength) it's the same. The owner of the company has pulled her aside numerous times of his own volition to try to help get her on task. My co-coaches have all but given up on her. I have not yet. She is 11.

Fast forward to today. Owner got an email from her parents this morning. I am apparently a bad coach, I'm always "riding her a**"and if I don't like her kid I need to hide it better." I need to get MY additude in check (?!) because it's "not fair" that I "single her out every practice" whereas i don't get at the other kids nearly as much.

Um, yeah.

We are planning to have a meeting with parents and child as soon as possible but I feel like this is pointless. Kid seems to think she runs the roost because her sister is the top ranked female athlete at our gym at this time. Aunt is a coach too (doesn't coach her). It's like she thinks she's immune to rules and it doesn't help that parents are basically agreeing with that.

I'm not entirely certain how to handle this! I still feel strongly that we need to keep her on task and help her in that way but it's clear that the parents feel otherwise. Any advice would be appreciated- and thanks reading this in its entirety!
 
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coachp

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Apr 5, 2013
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She is starved for attention and the parents are idiots... They give the older sibling all the attention and let the younger one do whatever she wants, which is,,,,, do anything for attention. I am sure she makes a scene when she has to sit down in time out as well... This is a parental problem and right now they are a bunch a blamers. Your only hope is the parents, if they are siding with the child then move he out of the group to a lower level, or off team. If they don't like it then tough. And this may sound odd but does the older sister get on her at all?
 
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MissM

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Coach
Proud Parent
Former Gymnast
Mar 24, 2016
3
Country
USA
Big sister DOES get on little sis occasionally but I've actually asked her to remove herself from all of the mess as best she can. After all, she's not her sister's keeper and she has her own work to do. (But if I see her getting at sis I don't stop it either.)

We had a meeting a couple days agowith myself, owner, mom and the girl and I felt it went really well. As usual, mom wasn't getting the full story from her kid. :rolleyes: She knew she goofed off but didn't know to what extent and didn't realize just how bad it gets. The girl was quite upset at the meeting once she saw the direction the conversation was turning (understandably so). I'm hopeful that if we all continue to work together on this kid that things will turn out well. At the very least maybe the kid will good off a bit less. ;)
 

gymisforeveryone

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Nov 16, 2012
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It sounds like you are handling the situation very well! It's hard, I know! It's even harder when you have siblings like that. Obviously when the big sister really is the best gymnast of the gym, asking the little sister leave would not be the best decision. Most probably the big sister and the whole family would follow her to another gym. Maybe in this situation asking the parents to come and secretly watch the kid practice would be a good idea. They would actually see what is happening and believe your side of the story better. Good luck!
 
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