Conflicts with the Coach

It is almost a guarantee that at some point during the gymnastics career someone will think that their coach is being difficult, unfair or down right mean. The problem becomes deciding is this on purpose to upset you, it is meant to help you improve, or is it because the coach is playing favorites with specific gymnasts?

Most times coaches are not really trying to upset anyone. However, their job is to instruct and train everyone. This means that often a single session will have several different levels of students training at the same time. This can result in several activities occurring at the same time, and can leave some gymnasts feeling left out. How you view the situation is entirely up to you, but overall the coach is trying to give each gymnast exactly what they need, based upon their skill level as well as physical strength.

Remember, many activities in gymnastics require extremely strong muscles. If your coach is working on exercises that require extreme arm strength and your arms are not as strong as they should be, you may find yourself disappointed as you are working on exercises and drills to help build your arm strength. While you may think such a situation is unfair because you would rather be learning something new, it is actually a very appropriate decision because the coach is putting your desire behind the importance of your overall safety and health.

A coach who allows someone to work on exercises they are ill equipped for just to keep a reputation of being fair or nice is generally not a very good coach. Instead, it is best to work with a coach who is willing to give honest and open feedback of performance and require more drills and exercises when necessary. Your health and safety should be the primary concern of the coach with all other desires coming in after safety is assured.

Many girls and boys alike have at some point felt they were being treated unfairly, however it is rarely ever actually a case of unfair treatment. Instead, it usually is a result of additional work being needed and the coach recognizing the deficiency. Instead of taking the actions of the coach personal, it makes the perfect time to speak to the coach after lessons to ask what you should do to improve. Taking the proactive approach of trying to ask for tips on how to improve, rather than crying about unfair treatment will show your coach that you are serious about improving and are willing to make the effort.

Realize your coach is not there to be your best friend; they are there to make sure you are safe and learn the proper techniques to be the best gymnast that you are physically capable of being. Whether that means you spend an additional week doing drills, or spend additional time working on basic exercises you are still working on being the very best you are personally capable of being.

If however, you do notice that your coach really is treating you very differently, talk to them privately about your concerns. You may discover that your coach has noticed problems that you have and they are simply trying to help you improve and overcome the struggles. If this is the case, take note of what they are saying and work to improve. If they are truly being unfair, then often drawing their attention to the problem will correct the behavior from most coaches who are actually making a professional effort.