As competition season comes to an end, gymnasts, it's important that you take the time to reflect back on your season and do an end-of-season review.
While I recommend doing a similar thing at the beginning of the New Year, an end of season review is even more important because the competitive season is still fresh in your mind, making it easier to remember the smaller details.
Reflecting back on your season gives you the insight as to what worked for you this season, what you accomplished that you're proud of, what you can work on for next season, and clues for what you can do to become a better gymnast.
To start your end-of-season review, find a quiet place to sit or lay down. Take a few big breaths in and relax your muscles one by one. As you're taking your breaths, think back to this past season. What are some things you remember about it that come into your mind? Did you achieve a big goal, qualify for a big meet, or have some really good meets that come to mind?
In contrast, did you have some rough meets, miss a goal you set for yourself, or feel disappointed about the way you competed? Taking a big picture view gives you a chance to get the overall feeling of this past season.
Now that you have a bird's eye view of your season, it's time to narrow in on the details.
Here are some questions to help guide your reflection. You can use the free download below to write your answers on (click on image to download):
QUESTION 1: WHAT ARE THREE THINGS THAT WENT WELL FOR ME THIS SEASON?
List out three things that you felt went well for you this past season. This could entail specific meets that went well or learning specific skills that you're proud of. Or it could be an overall feeling such as "I learned how to be patient" or "I gave it my best effort."
QUESTION 2: WHAT ARE 3 THINGS THAT DID NOT GO WELL FOR ME THIS SEASON?
Now think about three things that did not go as well as you would have liked them to go. Did you miss qualifying for a big meet that you really wanted to qualify for? Were you struggling through a mental block or having trouble learning certain skills you needed? Compared to other seasons, were you feeling less motivated or burnt out from gymnastics?
QUESTION 3: DID I REACH ANY OF THE GOALS I SET AT THE BEGINNING OF THE SEASON?
Most gymnasts set goals for themselves at the beginning of the season but very few actually achieve the goals they set for themselves. Sometimes it's because the goals they set are not realistic goals and other times it's because they forget about those goals during the season.
While goal setting is an important thing to do at the beginning of your season, it's equally as important to track your goals and tweak them along the way. If you didn't achieve your goals, think about why that was. Did you lose motivation during your season? Did you track them each week or completely forget about them as your season went on?
It's also possible you set too big of goals and that you felt overwhelmed with trying to accomplish them. If that is the case, what could you have done to break your goals down into smaller steps?
QUESTION 4: WHAT ARE SOME OF THE LESSONS (GOOD OR BAD) I LEARNED FROM THIS PAST SEASON?
Reflecting on your season is only important if you can take away some valuable lessons from it. Thinking about the things that did not go as well as you would have liked, what are some lessons you learned?
If you didn't qualify for a certain meet, why not? Did you need to focus on different things? Did you get really nervous and thus were not able to put your routines together in competition? If you got blocked on some skills, were you under a lot of pressure or feeling stressed out?
QUESTION 5: WHAT ARE THREE THINGS I WOULD LIKE TO IMPROVE ON FOR NEXT SEASON?
Based on your answers from above, what are three things you would like to improve on for next season? Do you need to set better goals? Or maybe you need to find ways to decrease the pressure you're feeling? Maybe you need to do other things like show up to practice with a better attitude or take breaks throughout the season to rest your body or mind?
QUESTION 6: WHAT AM I MOST PROUD OF MYSELF FOR THIS SEASON?
Whether you felt like this was a great season or not, there's definitely something you feel proud of from this past season. What was it? This is a chance to give yourself a pat on the back and recognize something you did that you feel really great about!
In sum, doing an end-of-season review in gymnastics is important. If you just move on to up training without reflecting back on your season, it's possible you might make the same mistakes as last season. Your goal is to improve a little each season in different aspects of your gymnastics journey.
If you or your gymnast needs support, in addition to the resources below I also offer one-on-one coaching sessions via Zoom.
- Stick It Girl Academy: For competitive gymnasts who want to live into their potential and need that extra push in mental training
- Mental Health Training for Gymnasts: Help your gymnast learn about her brain and the fight-flight-or-freeze response.
- Free Facebook Group for Moms of Gymnasts: Join this group to chat with other gymnastics moms and get tips for how to help your gymnast navigate through the mental ups and downs of gymnastics