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For Parents Some words of advice

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MILgymFAM

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Feb 6, 2014
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About three years ago we moved across the country, and at that time my older daughter left three teams in California- artistic, t&t, and rhythmic. She wrote out a month’s worth of daily advice for her younger teammates in rhythmic and sent them a practice at a time. I came across her list tonight when cleaning for our next cross country move and they made me smile. They’re written with rhythmic in mind, but can be for any type of gymnastics (or anything really). They’re basic but sweet, so here goes:

Day 1:
Daily wisdom

If you're having a lot trouble with a certain skill, take a break from it for a few minutes and work on something else. When you come back to it you'll be a little more calm and less frustrated.
Day 2:
Daily wisdom

Try to find a key word or phrase that targets the problem with your skill. For example, if you're falling on your penche, think the word "squeeze" so you will be tight and not fall.
Day 3:
Daily wisdom

If you're having trouble on turns, try doing it on your bad leg for a little bit, then switch back to your good leg. It usually helps me with turns.
Day 4:
Daily wisdom

When you're doing your routine, if you start to drop it, don't give up! Fight to keep your tosses, and finish the routine as best as you can.
Day 5:
Daily wisdom

Don't put so much pressure on yourself. Remember all you can do is try your best. If you keep doing that, the skills will eventually come.
Day 6:
Daily wisdom

I know it's hard, but try to keep a positive attitude. It's easier to stay motivated and keep working if you're positive. Take each mistake as a place to learn.
Day 7:
Daily wisdom

Remember, even if you're having trouble with your elements, you love to dance. If you think your routine isn't going well, focus of making your dance the best possible.
Day 8:
Daily wisdom

"Comparison is the thief of joy". Don't compare yourself to others. Everyone has skills they'll get easily and be good at, and skills that will take them long to get. It's different for everyone, so just focus on your own skills.
Day 9:
Daily wisdom

Don't be afraid to try something because you think you'll mess up. Fear of messing up holds a lot of people back. Just try as hard as you can, and be happy that you're giving it your all, even if you mess up.
Day 10:
Daily wisdom

Change it up. Don't spend every hoop day working on just your turn, or every ball day working on just your penche. Work on other skills too. It will help you not get bored with your skills and add variety.
Day 11:
Daily wisdom

Gymnastics is an important part of our lives, but it's not the end all be all.
Don't feel bad about yourself if you're having trouble in gymnastics because there are other important parts of you and your life.
Day 12:
Daily wisdom

If you need a source of motivation, think of your gymnastics role model. I'm assuming they work hard, so try and model yourself after them and work hard.
Day 13:
Daily wisdom

Remember that ballet, stretching, conditioning and apparatus work are all important parts of gymnastics. Even though they suck sometimes, it's gonna make you better.
Day 14:
Daily wisdom

Try and be a role model for the younger kids. Be someone they can look at and model themselves after. This will help them and you !
Day 15:
Daily wisdom

Don't let anyone tell you how hard you are working. You're the only one who knows how hard you are working. If you know you're are trying your absolute best, no can tell you differently.
Day 16:
Daily wisdom

People remember how you act. You could be the best in the world in gymnastics but people will remember more how hard you worked and how you handled yourself.
Day 17:
Daily wisdom

Remember the things you love about gymnastics. Just because it isn't going the way you want right now doesn't mean it will stay that way forever. Just keep trying!
Day 18:
Daily wisdom

Think of how far you've come, and all the things you've accomplished. You work hard, and push through when things are tough. When you are struggling, remember that you can push through it.
Day 19:
Daily wisdom

I'm proud of you, and everything you've done! So many people are proud of you and you should be too! Don't forget it!
Day 20:
Daily wisdom

If your having trouble with a skill just remember that you've done it before and you can do it again.
Day 21:
Daily wisdom

Even if you're not feeling confident, pretend you are. Fake it til you make it. If you act confident, your body language will make you start to actually feel confident.
Day 22:
Daily wisdom

If you're feeling frustrated or upset, try to find something that will calm you down. Try counting to ten in your head, or take deep breathes.
Day 23:
Daily wisdom

Don't stop trying when you mess up. Keep going, it will make your gymnastics better. It will also make you stronger, mentally.
Day 24:
Daily wisdom

Try to pay attention to your body. If you can feel what is making you mess up, it will be easier to fix. So if you're messing up a skill, stop for a second and try to think of reasons that could be causing it. Then, go through the list trying to fix each thing. Example: you're dropping your toss. Think of what could cause it. You find three possible reasons. 1. Tossing too far. 2. Tossing sideways. 3. Jumping to the side.
Next, try doing the skill while focusing on fixing these reasons, one at a time. This could help with not getting frustrated and getting the skill.
 
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