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The "scoop" on Level 7?

Discussion in 'Men's Artistic Gymnastics (MAG)' started by Pigeon, Jun 18, 2018.

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  1. Our gym will be competing level 7 for the first time in many years (they used to just go from 6 to 8).

    So what's the deal with 7? Base skills? What bonuses to boys tend to compete? What are the tough skills to get? Scoring differences from 5/6?

  2. 7, imo, is a tough one! It was before this quad, and still is to some degree.

    There are still base routines and bonuses. Not sure what they all are exactly. RIght now most of our boys are skipping 7, like your gym used to, so I am unsure about all of the skills :) I can send you the original routines though (the ones that came out initially. All changes are on usagym.org)

    I would think moving to the pommel horse could be one of the hardest things to do...
    sce likes this.
  3. My son skipped level 6 and went to level 7 when he was 9. I'm not completely sure of the rational for doing that but I guessed that it was because he was going to start doing Future Stars and the level 7 routines were close to the Future Stars routines. I know he had his giant's on p-bars and I think level 7 is where you first compete p-bar giants.

    When he was competing level 7, we didn't have many level 7's in Michigan so he was often the only level 7 at a meet. When he went to Regionals, there were many level 7's and those in his age group seemed to be all Future Star kids. He got his butt kicked at Regionals.
  4. S just competed 7. He's only 11, so it was either L7 or try to compete L8 as a JE and he just wasn't ready for that. He had a great season -- State Champ! -- before an nagging injury (that he's still getting over, sigh) held him back at Regionals. It was an interesting season in that there was a wide variety of skills. L7 has more bonus options than 4-6, so for example, you might see some boys traveling on pommel, while others did fairly basic routines similar to L6 mushroom.

    High bar was S's biggest jump skill-wise. To give you an idea, he didn't even have all the base skills at his first meet in December and scratched high bar, but ended up winning that event at States and placed pretty high at Regionals (I can't remember honestly, maybe 6th or 7th?). So that was a huge leap. P-bars was another event where I saw tons of variations on the routines. S's was very basic with just one bonus. But like with all levels, basic and clean often beat routines with lots of bonuses.

    Judging at L7 was TOUGH, at least in our region. I saw a huge change in scoring from L6. Very few 10+ scores; almost no 11s. In L6, S was generally scoring in the 10s, but anything 10 or higher was big at L7. I think he got one 11 all season. We were lucky to have a decent number of 7s in our state and region (region 7), so he usually had pretty good competition.

    I am glad he wasn't pushed to move to L8. There's no way he would have been ready -- honestly, even though he had such a strong L7 season, I think competing L8 as a 12-year-old is going to be a big challenge b/c he'll be up against all the awesome boys who did 8 as 11-year-olds and have to repeat due to age.

    Good luck to your DS!
    Cheryl likes this.
  5. Our gym has 2 boys who are Level 7. Their routines seem fairly similar to 6 but with a different vault and giants on the High Bar. None of our 7's are Division 1. Since we had a lot of 6's that got trapped in the age group change last year and weren't ready for Level 8, our gym put them all in JD, so they could start learning the Level 8 skills and putting them in their routines as they got them. The boys who did 7 were the younger boys (9 and 10). If you were a Level 6, 10 or older, and going to be competing as at least an 11, you did JD. They also put some kids in JD2, who didn't have any bonuses in Level 6. It didn't seem like many boys were Level 7 at the meets. From what I have heard, a Level 7 routine with all the bonuses in pretty similar to a Level 8 routine, but I don't know. Our gym is also big on trying to get them into optionals and has a large JD program, which they then use to feed into Levels 9 and 10. - We have only a handful of 8's as well. As for practice, the 8's and JD's practice together for the same hours, and work on getting the same skills. The 7's and 6's practice together with the JD2's. The biggest difference I saw was that all JD's no matter the age compete with the handles on PH, which I think is great practice for the upper levels.

    Anecdotally, there was one boy my son's age in Level 6, who was a little better than my kid on certain events, but not as good on others, but he was an amazing tumbler. The coach decided to put him in Level 8, and he ended up having a pretty bad season, finishing in the bottom tier every meet. We left that gym, and at evaluation our new coach said my son didn't yet have Level 8 skills. I agreed, so we decided to JD him and by the end of the year, he has solid Level 8 skills. A much kinder approach than putting a kid in above his level, who is used to winning and then end up being close to the bottom of every meet. The only downside for my son in JD, was that he often finished behind kids who were doing much easier routines. So, our mantra for this year was SKILLS, SKILLS, SKILLS, rather than places. I think we got lucky joining a gym where there is such a big JD team (One of our coaches is the Regional JD Rep) so they are committed to the program and use it as a pipeline rather than a rec league, so once the kids get to 9/10 they have a good shot at making Nationals.

    But since our gym has over 50 boys, there are always practices running, so you might end up practicing with any assortment of boys, which make Summer practice a delight, because if you can't make the 9-1 practice, you can do the 5-9.
  6. So it sounds like we could be in for an interesting year...

    My son will be competing as an 11 year old, I didn't realize that to do 8 he would have to be JE. He certainly wouldn't be ready for that. I think he's really going to struggle on rings and pommel. He's just not very strong on rings yet, and pommel is sort of hit or miss for him. Cheryl, sounds like your program has lots of options for boys! Right now our 7s are training between the optionals and the 6s - a couple of days with optionals, a couple of day with 6s.

    Thanks everyone for the info!
    sce likes this.
  7. Wait, trying to figure out the JE level 8 thing - is that for 10 year old kids?. 11 yr old kids can compete 8, right?

    Editing to add: This age stuff has me confused. Can someone make a summary of the ages allowed to be "in-age" for level?
  8. Level 8 you have to be JE to compete as an 11 year old (so competitive age 11 which means they could be actually 10 for much of the season).

    Level 8 11 (JE) and 12 (JE or JO) can go to nationals. Boys 13-14 can compete through regionals.

    Level 9 13 and 14 year olds can go to nationals, 15 and 16 year olds can compete through regionals.

    Level 10 15-18 year olds can compete through nationals.

    The minimum ages are those listed. So even if you do 8 as an 11 year old you can’t go to 9 until 13 and 10 until 15 I believe. Those are all comp ages (age at end of May) not actual ages
    J&A's mom, M2Abi, Coach Z and 2 others like this.
  9. A huge difference is pommel horse. You do your routine on the actual horse.
  10. My son did level 7 for 3 years because he wasn't ready to do level 8 JE as an 11 year old. He just finished his level 8 season and went to nationals as a JE. Next year he will do level 9. He started level 7 as a 9 year old and he was scared of many skills. He didn't dismount off the pbars until halfway through the season because he was scared of going backwards. The coaches finally decided to teach him a front tuck dismount and he was good. High bar was great before season started- he was doing layouts out of giants- but then he pulled into the bar and hit both shins before the first meet and it was a struggle the entire season after that. His 3rd year in level 7 he added all the bonuses except the giant on pbars and ended up 2nd in regionals as an 11 year old. High bar bonuses (if I remember them all)- free hip to handstand, endo, stalder and layout dismount out of giants. PBar bonuses- giant or moy to support, peach, pirouette, (back or front) layout dismount with a 1/2 twist. Pommel- too many combinations to list but I think it's 5 skills. Rings- tucked plange, press handstand, shoulder to shoulder (baby giant?), double back dismount. Vault- front handspring with a full twist, yami half. Floor- back full, front handspring front layout, back handspring, whip, back tuck..... I think that is all of the bonuses for level 7.....
    Pigeon likes this.
  11. Thank you all for the information!
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