All-Star Time To Intervene?

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catlady

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Yesterday at a competition there was a level 4 team out on the floor that will remain nameless. I can't even count the amount of stunts that fell, flyers that face planted, bases and backspots that hit the floor, bad tumble busts and numerous safety issues. The crowd was covering their eyes and literally getting into the fetal position in their chairs watching these athletes hit the floor, hard, over and over, again. By the time the team got to their dance, the whole audience was cheering them on in relief that noone was seriously hurt. This was far beyond any "just having a bad day", these athletes were, obviously, being requested to do stunts and tumbling they just weren't ready for, physically or mentally . Is there ever a point where someone intervenes and tells a gym you have to compete that team at a lower level for the safety of the kids?
 

KikiD22

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I've often wondered the same thing. At the competition we attended this past weekend there was a smaller program in attendance, and both of their two teams had routines that could be best described as reckless. Not sure what other word to use to describe how out of control the routines looked, for both teams. I've been around this sport for a while, so I no longer gasp as every crazy fall like some, but these two routines (both level 3 I believe) scared the heck out of me!
 
Dec 14, 2009
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Again, this (to me), is a MUCH bigger priority than high fives..although I can understand not wanting to step in and tell someone how to run their gym, or not wanting the USASF to step in and tell you how to run your gym.

HOWEVER- I think there SHOULD be some parameter in place, like if more than X points in safety deductions occur, some type of evaluation must take place.
 
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Yesterday at a competition there was a level 4 team out on the floor that will remain nameless. I can't even count the amount of stunts that fell, flyers that face planted, bases and backspots that hit the floor, bad tumble busts and numerous safety issues. The crowd was covering their eyes and literally getting into the fetal position in their chairs watching these athletes hit the floor, hard, over and over, again. By the time the team got to their dance, the whole audience was cheering them on in relief that noone was seriously hurt. This was far beyond any "just having a bad day", these athletes were, obviously, being requested to do stunts and tumbling they just weren't ready for, physically or mentally . Is there ever a point where someone intervenes and tells a gym you have to compete that team at a lower level for the safety of the kids?

As coaches, we are asked to exercise good judgement and knowledge that we know our athletes will be safe when performing skills at a competition. There's no rule or governing body that can go to a gym and make them drop a level(or 2 if needed).

I know that when that issue came up at our gym, you have to wonder and prepare to deal with questions and comments such as....
Why are we dropping a level? - Because it is unsafe for your child to perform these skills needed to win when they can do the skill progression leading up to that skill.

I'm going to quit if we go level ___!!!!! - I understand your frustrations but this team is not level __, they are level ___ and if you choose to pull your child I understand.( Have a back up in mind with all that child's skills but better ;) )

When are we going to go back to level____?!?! - When they can safe execute a well rounded/level appropriate routine without putting anyone in danger.

And some coaches don't like dealing with the crazy mob of parents ready to attack if they do drop a level(I'm not justify I'm playing Devil's Advocate a little). You just have to know how to deal with problems before they become performances like the one you are describing. If you want you can email that gym and give them a list of suggestions to help them improve their level 4 skills or offer them a clinic or 2.

You know a little Holy Water on the floor before they go doesn't hurt either!! Sorry I had to lol.
 

catlady

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If you want you can email that gym and give them a list of suggestions to help them improve their level 4 skills or offer them a clinic or 2.

You know a little Holy Water on the floor before they go doesn't hurt either!! Sorry I had to lol.

Unfortunately, the only list of suggestions I could give them on tumbling and stunting would be pads and pillows. There is, however, a Holy Water Font right around the corner I could hit before our next competition. Who knows....I could become "holywaterlady".:cool:
 

SharkDad

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CheernerdDC 's approach is a perfect one. The coach and gym owners are supposed to be the trained individuals who, if doing their job in a professional manner, should be the ones who decide what level is safe to have a team train and compete at. I can't see any viable way for a gym or EP to go to a gym and tell them how they should do their job.

I do, however see it as the responsiblity of the parents to decide if the person who is training their child is properly ensuring their safety. If not, I recommend pulling your child out of that environment.
 
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I've often wondered the same thing. At the competition we attended this past weekend there was a smaller program in attendance, and both of their two teams had routines that could be best described as reckless. Not sure what other word to use to describe how out of control the routines looked, for both teams. I've been around this sport for a while, so I no longer gasp as every crazy fall like some, but these two routines (both level 3 I believe) scared the heck out of me!
This is why the sport scores me so much now from when I first got involved in it 8 years ago. This early on, water it down and let these girls build some confidence. A lot of gyms I know do this to please parents. These gyms need to start thinking about what is right and safe. Parents need to be put in their place and then they will trust you. If you let them run your program, they will walk all over you and everyone else.
 

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This is why the sport scores me so much now from when I first got involved in it 8 years ago. This early on, water it down and let these girls build some confidence. A lot of gyms I know do this to please parents. These gyms need to start thinking about what is right and safe. Parents need to be put in their place and then they will trust you. If you let them run your program, they will walk all over you and everyone else.

Agreed. Sadly, it is usually because of one or two parents, but the whole team suffers.
 
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Just an idea, although I don't know if any EP would go for it:
What if, supposing you got so many deductions for safety/disaster skills, the EP could refuse to score you/give you a 'place'? It would potentially keep teams who like to frequent smaller EPs so they can still bomb but be 'national' champions from being too reckless. Not sure if it would ever happen (EPs not wanting to lose money), but making it an option for the REALLY unsafe routines would force people to take a second and think 'Is this really worth it?' And you would NOT get a refund of comp fees- talk about risk vs reward!
 

catlady

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Just an idea, although I don't know if any EP would go for it:
What if, supposing you got so many deductions for safety/disaster skills, the EP could refuse to score you/give you a 'place'? It would potentially keep teams who like to frequent smaller EPs so they can still bomb but be 'national' champions from being too reckless. Not sure if it would ever happen (EPs not wanting to lose money), but making it an option for the REALLY unsafe routines would force people to take a second and think 'Is this really worth it?' And you would NOT get a refund of comp fees- talk about risk vs reward!

The scores were posted and this team scored a 56 out of a possible 82. I have no idea how ANY gym owner would think he/she was benefiting their business by "leveling up" to appease parents with this performance. Several level two teams beat this score. And if the parents are demanding this team to be a level 4, then I think those are some pretty sick and twisted parents that can watch their kids take that kind of abuse over and over, again. My heart breaks for those kids, and kristenthegreat I love your idea!
 
Dec 28, 2009
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Call me crazy, but this is already "regulated" with deductions. You cannot tell me the coaches and parents don't see the placements and scores and are clueless about why they are in last place. You constantly compare to the other teams in your division.
If I have a team that is a total trainwreck, it may take awhile to make the decision to move down because it's not an easy one. We all have days where nothing will hit, but it might take the parents going and watching the team at competition to see where they stack up. It's much easier to be like "well, we got last at competition and we are not even close to being able to compete. I think it's time to move down." It may be the only way parents understand. Also, gyms that level up the teams to compete higher than they should are not going to last long... It regulates itself (although I know that is not what people want to hear).
 
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Call me crazy, but this is already "regulated" with deductions. You cannot tell me the coaches and parents don't see the placements and scores and are clueless about why they are in last place. You constantly compare to the other teams in your division.
If I have a team that is a total trainwreck, it may take awhile to make the decision to move down because it's not an easy one. We all have days where nothing will hit, but it might take the parents going and watching the team at competition to see where they stack up. It's much easier to be like "well, we got last at competition and we are not even close to being able to compete. I think it's time to move down." It may be the only way parents understand. Also, gyms that level up the teams to compete higher than they should are not going to last long... It regulates itself (although I know that is not what people want to hear).

Not always though. There ARE teams that are completely oblivious to that--the small gyms with 5 fulls that think they HAVE to go level 5 certainly won't drop that team to a more suitable level because they don't want to lose those fulls to programs with real level 5 teams. They go to competition after competition, bust half of their routine, and say--well, we're going to work on cleaning it up and we WILL get a bid to worlds at the next comp!!
 
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Not always though. There ARE teams that are completely oblivious to that--the small gyms with 5 fulls that think they HAVE to go level 5 certainly won't drop that team to a more suitable level because they don't want to lose those fulls to programs with real level 5 teams. They go to competition after competition, bust half of their routine, and say--well, we're going to work on cleaning it up and we WILL get a bid to worlds at the next comp!!

Do parents really stick around for that? For that season maybe, but usually they are long gone as soon as possible...

Everyone wants to win... I would think it's going to be a hard sell for your gym if you are constantly in last place.
 
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Do parents really stick around for that? For that season maybe, but usually they are long gone as soon as possible...

Everyone wants to win... I would think it's going to be a hard sell for your gym if you are constantly in last place.

As surprising as it is, yes. There is a small gym back home that has had a level five team for at least three of the last five years. They still have a full squad of a lot of returning girls from within that program. They have a HUGELY strong loyalty to that program (and the coach does create one hell of a "family" feel to that gym, I'll give them that). But that doesn't change how dangerous some of the things put out there are. Kids will leave that gym, go be on a more "level-appropriate" team for a year, and then they go right back because they want to be on that team.

ETA: I know that's not the norm, but it does happen.
 
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