In September 2014, Gymnastics BC adopted the USA Junior Olympic Program (JO) for its provincial level competitive categories. The USA Junior Olympic program is based on 10 levels. This level system provides great long term benefits aimed at keeping athletes motivated with smoother transitions from level to level and improved progression within one level. It was developed with the belief that all athletes, regardless of their potential, must have a solid foundation of basic skills in order to advance safely.
The JO program is divided in three major segments:
- Learn the Basics (Levels 1 to 2): Levels 1 to 2 are compulsory routines with set choreography and music. They allow gymnasts to develop good and strong basics and is an introduction to competition. Level 1 & 2 use a Gold/Silver/Bronze scoring system for all athletes. Athletes train 6-8 hours per week and compete at 3 local meets.
- Compulsories (Level 3 and 5): Levels 3-5 continue to use compulsory routines and choreography. Both of these levels are progressive and build upon the skills required at the previous level. Level 5 requires excellent basics and is meant to deepen the athlete’s technical proficiency. This is an excellent preparation for athletes going toward the higher provincial or national competitive programs. Competitive opportunities exist at invitational meets and at GBC Championships (either as zone teams or as a category on its own). Levels 3-5 will use a Gold/Silver/Bronze scoring system for any athletes under 7 years old and a ranking scoring system for all athletes 7 years and older. Athletes train 12-16 hours per week and compete at 3-5 meets within BC.
- Optional (Levels 6 to 10): Levels 6-10 are competitive programs using optional routines. These levels have difficulty restrictions where the requirements become progressively more difficult. Composition, including artistry will be evaluated in Levels 8-10. Levels 6-10 use a ranking scoring system for all athletes in all age categories. Athletes train 16-20 hours per week and compete at 4-6 meets within Canada.
Athletes in Pre-Team will focus on basic skill and physical ability development to prepare them for the JO program. Pre-Team athletes will do in-house testing, while Dev and Comp athletes will learn JO routines and compete at BC sanctioned events.