Forum: Gym / Rhythmic Gymnastics

An eye for talent? Help
By mollypeach
On Mon Jan 09, 2006 07:49 AM

Hi, my daughter is 8. She does ballet, and gymnastics. We recently saw our first rg expo at a gym meet, and I think my daughter would do real well in rg. How do you recongnize talent in this area? What does she NEED to have in order to compete? She has the work ethic, so the hours of training are not a problem.
What else do you look for?
thanks,
Mollypeach

14 Replies to An eye for talent? Help

re: An eye for talent? Help
By GymLovermember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Mon Jan 09, 2006 08:00 AM
probably natural flexibility - coordination (hand/eye)

but normally it are coaches which spot the talent of a child and it is the child who should choose what she wants to do. So I suggest more of letting her try out and see if SHE likes it.

Not looking for what might fit her best for competitions. I was hoping we stepped away from that system.
re: An eye for talent? Help
By Atoniamember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Tue Jan 10, 2006 02:09 AM
i hope not to offend but i feel shocked that a mother decides for her daughter... i think it is at her to decide if she wants to do Rg and not the parents....

what has been said is true:natural flexibility is a plus,but if a girl loves really Rg ,even if she is not too flexible,she can of course work on it
re: An eye for talent? Help
By mollypeach
On Tue Jan 10, 2006 07:59 AM
Oh, she loved watching the rg. She is very interested in it, but she would have to leave her current gym to do rg. Her gym only offers USAG.
She is only 8, that's why I do make decisions for her. I do not feel offended by your comments, though.
She does NOT have 'natural' flexibility. She works hard for her splits, very hard!!! Same thing for her back, hardly flexible, BUT she has dedication, and a work ethic that most children envy.
She wants to be a (her words) "dancer and a gymnast" When I saw the rg expo, I saw the perfect combination of the two. It was soooooo... beautiful to watch...
I know my daughter has the drive, but not sure of the talent that it takes to be a rg.
I guess you could say we are torn between gym, and rg. Everyday she comes home from school, she asks to see the pictures on DDN. She loves to read through all the threads, and look at the beautiful pictures of the girls..
Thank you so much for the help so far....maybe I could have her try the rg to see if she would rather do that than gym.
ahh...I don't know what to do. :(
re: An eye for talent? Help
By Simona_A
On Tue Jan 10, 2006 10:53 AM
At a young age such as 5-6-8 years old can happend that the parents to give you a direction in sport.
Also they can insist in going on practising or letting you drop it. Sometimes you need some external determination to keep on doing it - as a lots of sports are not easy to practise!
My mother thought it would be good for me to practise gymnastics as I was very skinny and she thought it could help me stay more straight and have a nice position of the body when walking for ex. It was just the right thing to do for me!
And I loved practising rhytmics even not sometimes was easy!
re: An eye for talent? Help
By GymLovermember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Tue Jan 10, 2006 02:10 PM
Does she like ag as well? Perhaps it is possible to combine both if it isn't at the same hours or too many hours?
re: An eye for talent? Help
By AnjieAngel
On Tue Jan 10, 2006 04:55 PM
If she has natural talent when it comes to coordination, and is hard-working and determined when it comes to flexibility and of course strength (which I guess she get's through ballet), she could do good in RG. Remember that back-flexibility isn't all, and that it's easier to work hard for splits, she could develop beautiful splits and combined with ballet she would have strength which could be special for her. Nowadays, there are so many gymnasts with back flexibility, but fewer and fewer with impressive flexibility and strength in splits, so she could be a kind of different gymnast. Judges and coaches sometimes go mad over back flexibility, but don't let that stop your daughter, if she's determined, she could be able to impress the judges with amazing legs! Oh my, I've just been planning out your daughter's carreer.. Well, I hope you just took that as advice. Wish her the best of luck!
re: An eye for talent? Help
By Proud_Mama
On Sun Jan 29, 2006 02:03 AM
I don't know where you live but here in California there are many gyms that allow a free trial class or 2. Why not have her take a class (before quitting her ag gym) so she can see what it takes (the beginning class of course) and see if it's something she's interested in doing. That way she can actually do it instead of just watching or reading about it. And this way you can get more info about it and you can see for yourself what it takes and if your daughter has it. I hope that made sense LOL.
good luck!
re: An eye for talent? Help
By mollypeach
On Sun Jan 29, 2006 04:32 PM
Today was here first meet in level 4 ag. She got 1st place AA, and all the judges were so nice. They commented on her 'grace'. Ballet helps so much, and sets her apart from the other comp. Her team got 3rd AA. I am so proud of her.

I would love to get her a trial at the other gym that offers the rg, but it is scheduled during her regular practices at her current gym.

I think the plan you laid out for her career is fine with me! :)
Thanks
re: An eye for talent? Help
By Proud_Mama
On Sun Jan 29, 2006 10:32 PM
what about a private RG lesson if the other time conflicts with her regular gym time? Maybe then the coach can tell you how she/he thinks your daughter would fit in with the rest of the group. Just a thought. :)
re: An eye for talent? Help
By mollypeach
On Mon Jan 30, 2006 07:16 AM
Great idea!!! I think I'll do that.
re: An eye for talent? Help (karma: 1)
By RileyA
On Mon Jan 30, 2006 08:08 PM
The most important trait that a child needs to do well in RG is a passion for the sport. A love for dance and movement and a good work ethic. If your daughter has those things she will go far.

RG coaches tend to look for.

1. Good flexibility of legs, back and shoulders.
2. Good hand eye coordination, for the throwing and catching of those apparatus.
3. A natural sense of rythm and musicality.
4. Dance talent, in particular ballet.
5. A great sense of performance. Loves to get out in front of an audience and perform.

But by the sounds of it your daughter has extreme talent in Artistc gymnastics. To win 1st AA in level 4 is fantastic. It would be a pity to give that up. Make sure that she is aware that there is no tumbling at all in RG. So if she enjoys doing things like Round off, back handsprings she will miss USAG. Also it is all floor work. So if she loves vault, bars and beam she will miss those too.
re: An eye for talent? Help
By AnjieAngel
On Tue Jan 31, 2006 01:48 AM
I would like to correct your first point, RileyA.
Good flexibility is of course an important factor, but not every child develops it, even though they have the ability. This ability can be tested by flexibility in other parts of the body, hands, for example. And shoulder flexibility shouldn't be a concern, as it is quite easy to stretch the shoulders into becoming flexible, in comparasion to other body parts. Secondly, I think good back flexibility is more important than leg flexibility in the beginning. Not everyone can become flexible in their back, but the legs are easier to stretch, and it's much more dangerous to push a child into backstretching than it is to make her put her leg on a chair and sit in her splits. "Punchline" would be that coaches look for flexibility, but firstly in the back, then in the legs, and maybe shoulders (but it's not that important if the girl already has a flexible back).
re: An eye for talent? Help
By mollypeach
On Tue Jan 31, 2006 06:29 AM
Thank you so much everyone. RileyA, I totally forgot about the tumbling part. I think she would miss it.
I am going to talk to her some more, and see what she would like to do. She is so excited about her first meet, still. :)

When I was young, her age, a coach tried to get me to quit dance, and go into USAG, and I got so frazzeled. I can remember the coach saying that 'dance would get me nowhere', and that the potential I had for ag was more dominant. It just made me quit gymnastics at the age of 10 and work harder on my dance. I still resent that coach. He should've just kept his mouth shut, and left well enough alone. The good news is, I became pro at age 13, and at 35, I can still do level 5/6 floor, vault, and bar tricks. :) I'm too old to fall off a beam, or scared. :O

Again, thank you all for the info.
Molly
re: An eye for talent? Help
By ShadesOfRaj
On Wed Feb 01, 2006 10:16 AM
Just one thing - I wouldn't reccommend to do AG and RG at the same time. RG trains different muscles than in AG and if are trained together at a high level can cause muscle dammage. However if she changes to RG now I think what she has learned in AG will in some ways benefit her. Rhythmic Gymnasts have to be clever and very industrious workers... I think those are the main requirements.

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