Competition Hints for Gymnasts

Our philosophy behind competitions is that meets are an opportunity for gymnastics success and excellence, to show progress and new skills, hit routines, have fun and have a positive social and educational experience. Gymnasts learn how to compete by competing and should take every opportunity to do so.

You Must Actually Compete to Learn to Compete

Learning to compete is a long process. Gymnasts must deal with pressure, crowds, distractions, psyching, travel, jet lag, lack of sleep, unfamiliar equipment, inconsistent judging, gymnastic politics and a host of other variables. This takes time and experience. Give them the time and opportunity to learn and they will eventually excel.

Parents Don’t Need to Add Any Additional Pressure

Parents should realize that all necessary performance pressure is supplied by the coaches. Extra requirements by parents may upset that balance. Successes will be celebrated and whatever problems are noted will be targeted for further development.

Don’t Obsess Over Scores

Gymnastics judging is a highly subjective, relative evaluation and scores are not necessarily indicative of a gymnast’s true progress or lack of it. Scores vary from session to session, day to day and meet to meet and are not always comparable from gymnast to gymnast.

Coaches Know, Gymnasts Know, Judges ?

Gymnastic coaches and gymnasts are almost always considerably more knowledgeable and experienced than judges. Coaches and gymnasts are in the gym so much more than judges. If you want to know who to believe, believe your coach and your gymnast.

Enjoy the Thrill of Victory and the Agony of Defeat

A parent’s job at meets and other times is to share your gymnast’s successes and provide moral support for any difficulties.

Travel, Your Teammates and Friends, and a Room with a Pool

One of the pay-offs for all the hard work your gymnast does is to be able to travel with the team to away meets and participate in any after-meet socializing. If at all possible, allow your gymnast to go to eat after the meet with the rest of the team members and/or stay with the rest of the team at host hotels. Meet experiences should be positive and one of the ways to ensure this is to make sure the whole trip is enjoyable. Many teams specially plan activities at each meet they attend. The most common p;an after eating out together is to stay at a hotel with an indoor pool.

Every one of our Compulsory and Optional Level e-Books has even more competition hints.

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