Sunday, 05 February 2012 21:00

Recruiting Tips: Which Division?

Written by Jill Hicks

Every serious gymnast who wants to compete in college can! It is just about finding the right Division and program that fits her as an athlete. So the question still remains, are you Division 1, Division 2 or Division 3?

In this article I will be focusing on the athletic side of making a college decision. I have outlined several different things you can do to help you define which Division will best fit your skills and abilities.1.  Talk with your coach: Have an honest conversation and get feedback from the people that know your skills and work ethic best. Are you hitting your peak or are you still improving? Is your body healthy to do All Around for four years or do you want to specialize?

2.  Go watch a local collegiate gymnastics meet: Hopefully you live near a college with the sport of gymnastics. It is important to get on campuses and view a meet “in person” and it’s fun too!

3.  Honestly compare your skills: If you can’t get to a collegiate gymnastics meet, there is plenty of footage on the Internet that you can view.

4.  Attend a college gymnastics camp: This is a great way to meet coaches and current student athletes. You can talk with them and ask questions in person.

5.  Send out your profile and video: You will get letters back and responses directly from coaches as to their interest in you or not. Don’t take rejection letters as a negative. See them as an answer to helping you move on to another program that fits you better.

6.  Compare your start values and scores: This is actually a tough one to use as a gauge, but it’s not impossible. Club meets tend to be scored differently then college meets, but you can compare your start values. Most Division 1 coaches are looking to replace Level 10/10.0 start value routines on each event. Division 2 tends to have more level 9 athletes and so on.

7.  Ask yourself: After reviewing the six areas above, it is important to know yourself and have a clear picture of what Division you are capable of competing. College coaches like to have recruits talk in realistic terms. This shows confidence in who you are as a person!

About Jill Hicks:

Jill Hicks is a former elite gymnast, Division I college athlete, club coach and Division I college gymnastics coach (Cal State Fullerton, Oregon State) and the owner of Jill Hicks Consulting, where she provides recruiting services and choreography for prospective student-athletes and their families. For further information visit: www.jhicksconsulting.com

Editor’s Note:  Publication of this article is not an endorsement of any recruiting service.  Always check with the NCAA or your school’s compliance officer for any questions regarding recruiting rules, the latest timelines, or other issues.