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Welcome to Energy’s Xcel Team!!
We are so excited to be starting our next season with you! Here at Energy, our philosophy is rooted in giving girls the power to build their own foundation for the future. We do this through goal setting, developing strength, flexibility and gymnastics skills. However, the most important thing we do is mind set training. Developing control of their mind allows them to harness their power to grow confidently and influence the world around them. The purpose of this handbook is to provide a clear picture of who we are as a team as well as outline our rules, policies and expectations associated with being a member of Energy’s Xcel team.
Contact Information and Resources
What is Xcel?
USAG (USA Gymnastics) is comprised of two different competitive Programs, JO(Junior Olympic) and Xcel. USAG judges serve both programs. Traditionally, USAG has operated exclusively through JO with Levels 1-10. The JO program requires more time and a high level of dedication. At the more advanced levels, the commitment can extend to the whole family due to extensive travel required for training and competition. A solution needed to be found for those athletes who wish to remain competitive but want to explore different activities or have the opportunity to just be a kid as well. The outcome would be a program that could be balanced along with other activities. Xcel was created here in Massachusetts and has since become the majority of registered athletes competing through USAG all over the country.
Registering with USAG - Parents are now required to register their gymnast(s) through USA Gymnastics. A renewal notice will be emailed to you from the Team Director. Follow the steps in the email to register your gymnasts. Parents should not go to the USA Gymnastics website to renew their child’s membership without first receiving the parent registration email. All gymnasts must be registered by (September). Coaches will take care of the registration process for all meets.
Annual Breakdown -
Safety, Process, and Progression
Safety - and well being of our athletes is paramount. We believe in developing strength, flexibility and proper progressions in order to minimize risk of injury. We focus less on how long it takes to achieve a skill and more about developing the understanding of the skill and pairing it with a body and mind that is well prepared to tackle to challenge. That being said we reserve the right to postpone working on certain skills if the coach feels the gymnast isn’t yet ready. We ask that you respect this process. The policy ensures the your daughter’s physical safety as well as her confidence moving forward. Please note that the non-mastered skills they are working in the gym are not always considered competition-ready and may not be included in the routine.
Injuries - It is the gymnast/parent’s responsibility to inform the coach of anything that may hinder their performance during practice or competition. If the gymnast sees a doctor who has given a do’s and don’ts list, it would be beneficial to pass that along to coaches. This allows us to make any modifications necessary to avoid further injury. Keep in mind that an injured gymnast comes back with an advantage if she continues to attend practices. Even if only to condition, listen, and observe. This keeps her mind and body fresh and better prepared to rejoin when she recovers. Serious injuries require a doctor’s note to resume regular gymnastics activity. If taping or bracing is necessary, the coaches will help you with it. You could cause further damage if taping/bracing is done improperly.
Open Communication - We encourage open communication regarding injuries and illnesses among the athlete, parents, and coaches. Being honest about pain level is important. If the gymnast hides physical pain in order to continue practicing, this just sets her further back in the long run and breaks down trust between the athlete, coaches and parents. Contrastly, if a gymnast creates “injuries/pain” in order to get out of doing conditioning, she will be given a modified version with the understanding that it reflects a lack of commitment to the team and limits their progress moving forward.
Rips and Grips - Grips are optional. They are a tool used to help protect the palms (rips still happen), and to better “grip” the bar. Some coaches require that all gymnasts use grips. At our gym, and at this level they are optional. If you are interested in purchasing grips, come to your coach first. We’ll be able to guide you in the right direction with the sizing and type. Not all grips are created equal. Hand-me-down grips are discouraged. They form to your hands as you use break them in. Do not go to your friends for advice on how to treat your grips. Your coaches know best. The same goes for rips. When a gymnast gets a rip during practice or at a competition, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are done with bars for the day. We’ll take care of it appropriately at the gym and are happy to offer advice for how to treat it at home.
Fear and the Learning Process - Fear is a natural and healthy emotion to have when trying new things. It forces us to slow down and analyze potential risk and make decisions accordingly. We must work with fear, not against it. Fear however, is very good at swaying your decision making if you allow it. Logic must prevail. We follow a process which begins with understanding the element and the strength, shape, flexibility, and power required to perform it safely and correctly. We then break the skill down into smaller pieces and drill each component. The athlete will realize that most if not all of the drills feel familiar, increasing their confidence. Often times this includes taking steps back in order to progress. The final piece is the athlete’s level of confidence. She should be confident in her ability to independently perform the skill safely and correctly. Even if this is the only piece missing, it would be unsafe for her to attempt the skill and therefore she isn’t quite ready. This process could take weeks or even years to achieve. Be patient, trust the process. We will never force an athlete to do a skill they aren’t prepared to do.
Level Advancement and Division Descriptions - Coaches are in control of placing each gymnast in the proper division. It is common for athletes to remain the same level for two or more years. A gymnast competing for the first time, regardless of skill level, must begin at the Bronze or Silver Division. Upon receiving a 31.00 All Around score or better, they will be eligible to move to Gold. Again mobility to move to the next level will be at the discretion of the coaching staff. If the goal is to eventually move to Gold within the season, the athlete must abide by the rules and policies and compete with their current division until they achieve the mobility score and have approval of the coaches.
Meet Day Breakdown
Competition Rules and Conduct for Gymnasts
Tuition, Fees & Parent Team Organization
Parent Team Organization (PTO)
Tuition (Academic Year Vs. Summer)
What else will we have to pay for?
General Expectations of Athletes
General Expectations of Parents
Competition Rules and Conduct for Parents
Parents of Gymnasts (POGS)