he number one rule to deal with it is NOT to become the gymnast's friend...and don't make life in the gym about anything more than gymnastics.
I dont know if this is so true..Personally i feel that you have to be friends with the gymnast, but you have to be a professional friend when at the gym. You and the gymnast are there to both do a job. The first and foremost responsibility of the coach is to teach i believe, but to do this the gymnast must trust you, and respect you. If they don't respect you then really its all in vain... and i think as a result most coaches turn to intimidation. The scare tactics are much easier, anyone can yell and scream and scare kids into doing what you want them to do, then to earn their respect and attention.
Have you ever seen a realllllly mean coach with adult gymnasts? i know i haven't, but i know for a fact many of the best gymnasts and coaches create strong ties with each other. Kyle Schewfelt is very close to his first coach for example (check out his blog if you want..very cool), so are the Hamm Twins, and many of Russian Gymnasts with Arkaev.
The "harsh" coach went back to Europe after the year she met my daughter. She had been with us for several years before this. She is now back in the USA at another gym and is doing quite well. Unfortunately it is for one of our main competitors!
It was the loss of this coach, our head coach at the time, which tossed our gym into turmoil for two years. She was a great coach and was sorely missed by the optional girls and their families. Many of these optional gymnasts left at this time. My daughter had only recently started gymnastics when she first encountered this coach during Tops training . She was nine and in level five. Had dd been a bit more mature at the time, she would have had a better appreciation of how good this coach was and still is. My only criticism is that I wish she would have been able to take into account my daughter's age and recent start in gymnastics by tempering her stern style a little bit, to coach with the child's age and maturity in mind.
Valentin puts it nicely when he says that when it comes time to practice, the gymnasts must put on their 'game faces'. The girls need to be serious and focused when they practice, even if they're having fun. They must have a certain degree of maturity to be able to do this. Fortunately, my daughter has matured a lot since those early days. She practices as though she were competing and competes as though practicing, always with focus and intensity, even when doing conditioning. That's why I mentioned that my daughter had earned her coaches respect, because she had demonstrated a serious and focused nature.
We've had a new co-head coach for only the last 3 months. My daughter has nevertheless established a good working relationship with him. I believe he is much like coach Valentin. He does not yell. But my daughter tells me that his tone of voice or even silence conveys a great deal of meaning. He is a very serious guy, but now that my daughter is much more mature, they work well together even after only a few months.
was referring to more to maintaining leadership of the group, and finding strategies to use the group's dynamics to enhance training, instead of becoming a member of the group, socially and emotionally. Many coaches fall into this trap. It's usually the ones who participate in lots of social activities with some kids outside of the gym, which is just weird
I don't know of any coaches like that, and persoanly i don't want to know any. It is weird and that is definitely crossing the gymnast coach boundary. Unless both parties are adults.