Yesterday my 7-year-old Cecilia had her first gymnastics meet of this season. During practice the night before the meet, her coach asked all the girls, “What is something you are nervous about and what will you do to get through it?”
Cecilia responded, “I’m nervous about doing my scale on the beam. I practiced my beam routine 5 times tonight, and I fell off the beam during my scale all 5 times.”
*Above is a picture of a gymnast doing a Scale — Back leg must lift a minimum of 90 degrees and be held for at least 2 seconds. The Gymnast must keep both legs locked out and chest up while performing both the scale and arabesque.
When C’s coach asked her what she will do to get through it, Cecilia said, “I’m going to relax because I know I can do it, and I believe in myself.”
WOW. I need to remember that the next time I feel nervous about anything!
During the meet, we watched C go through her warm-up on the beam. When she practiced her scale, she fell off! Yikes!
A few minutes later, it was time for her official routine. While watching, I felt like Olympian Aly Raisman’s parents, doing the lean, making facial expressions, mumbling under my breath, grabbing F’s arm. (Click HERE for the video of Raisman’s parents watching one of her routines.) I was tense and did not want to watch, not only because I knew C was nervous about it, but also because it’s the beam for God’s sake! That thing is SCARY!
C, on the other hand, seemed completely calm and cool and did not look one bit nervous. She looked focused, confident, relaxed, happy and completely in her element. And, she NAILED her routine. She kicked that scale in the ass.
While C has been doing gymnastics since she was 2.5 years old, F and I are not the type of parents who push her or pressure her in any way. The path she has taken in gymnastics has been completely her choice. She absolutely loves the sport and has had incredibly positive relationships with the coaches and her teammates/friends.
This was the first meet during which F and I actually kept track of her scores; however, we did not keep track of her scores in relation to her fellow competitors. So, we were pleasantly surprised when Cecilia was announced as the 1st place winner on BEAM in her age group, as well as at the 4th place All Around winner for her age group.
Yet the best part was after the meet when C beamed, “I’m so proud of myself!”