I’m so excited to get an absolute must hear interview up today about hard, but necessary, conversation with parents, gymnasts, and coaches. Last month, I wrote a very popular article, “7 Tips for Dealing with Stubborn Gymnastics Coaches, Parents, and Gym Owners” (find it by clicking here)

There was a massive buzz about the ideas I discussed and the free lecture on gymnastics culture change  I included. It seems like we are all struggling with the concept of change. We are facing new challenges, new ideas, and uncharted territory for how to train in gymnastics. Many people are struggling with what information to learn, whose advice to follow, and the best approach to a new era of gymnastics.

Alongside this, there is so much change happening that people are overwhelmed with what to do first.

How do I train fewer hours per week to keep kids healthy, but still make skill progress?
How do I deal with parents that are overstepping their boundaries?
How do I deal with unmotivated kids who lack patience or work ethic?
How to I stay happy in the gym and not burnout myself?

If you struggle with these questions, you are not alone. To help out, I asked a friend of mine from the early days of SHIFT in 2014 to come on the podcast. Eric Van der Meer is the owner of Redwood Empire Gymnastics and is someone I massively respect. He has embraced new ideas, fostered continuing education for his staff, and has a sound moral compass leading the gyms he owns.

He has a great balance of open-mindedness and listening, to setting boundaries and taking action. He also has success across all levels, from preschool to level 9/10, and more recently starting kids in the junior elite track. I sat down with him for an over an hour, and there was so much good information I replaced the normally scheduled podcast with this discussion. We talk about

  • Where to learn new ideas, and how to embrace/implement change
  • What you should do if a lot of injuries are popping up in your gym
  • How do talk with parents in a professional and productive manner
  • How to deal with low motivation in gymnasts or staff
  • Where gymnastics fits in the ‘life priority’ list
  • How to build a healthy gym culture that is still high level

I promise you will not want to miss this episode. I learned a ton, and will be listening to it a few more times to really let things sink in. You can find it on iTunes, Spotify, and Stitcher.

The Hard Conversations Gymnastics Needs To Start Having

Hope you enjoy, and have a great week!

– Dave

Dr. Dave Tilley DPT, SCS, CSCS
CEO/Founder of SHIFT Movement Science