Communication and Understanding Can Be Problematic

Parents of gymnasts have a problem. That problem is to know who they can trust for the information they want and need about their gymnast’s career, talent and prospects. Their choices are coaches, judges and their own gymnast. Unfortunately, each of those can have their own special problems when it comes to accurate information.

Judges are not the Real Authority on the Sport

Parents of gymnasts are often confused at the scores their gymnasts receive (or don’t receive) and the reasons for those scores. Many parents think that gymnastics judges are the top authority in the sport and that their evaluations are always correct judgments of your gymnast’s success, progress and talent level. But many judges were never gymnasts, have never coached and are only part-time in terms of actually spending time at meets or in a gym related to gymnastics.

Coaches May Be Justifying Their Actions

Coaches barely have the time to explain everything to gymnasts that they need to know and very rarely have the time to explain to each set of parents everything they need to know.  When gymnasts don’t do well at meets, are not learning new skills or are not enjoying their gymnastics experience, it may always seems as if coaches have some reason/excuse for why. How are parents to know if what they are told is complete, true and accurate and everything they need to know?

Gymnasts Could Be Overreacting

Gymnastics can be an intense emotional journey and daily events can have a powerful effect on young gymnasts. Sometimes the emotions of the moment are more than gymnasts can understand and deal with.  Plus, gymnasts are often very young and may or may not understand everything coaches are doing or saying.  In those cases, what they do or do not tell their parents can give give parents a false impression of what is going on.

Parents Need to Look At All Sides

Since each of the parties involved in the sport may not always be the most accurate source for information and a true evaluation of what is going on, parents need to take everything they hear with a grain of salt. The best way to evaluate what is going on is if there is visible progress and your gymnast is happy. If a gymnast is making progress, learning new skills and is happy, then their future in the sport is improving and they are getting what they want from the sport.

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