Little Girls in Pretty Boxes

Little Girls in Pretty Boxes is a made-for-television movie based on the book about gymnasts and the extreme difficulties they encounter at the upper echelons of competition. Elite gymnastics results in many sacrifices for all involved, both physically and mentally, but how how much is too much?

Released 1997; Runtime 96 minutes

  • Anxiety & Stress: The coach puts them under constant pressure so they will cope better with it, and some handle it better than others.
  • Commitment: The girls are reminded on a regular basis about how much effort that they need to put into their gymnastics to pursue their goal.
  • Eating Disorders: Katie reduces the amount she eats, saying that she won't eat her dinner and if she does, she will just throw it up because losing three pounds means gaining a foot in height in her tumbling.
  • Goal Setting: The coach puts a lot of outcome oriented goals on the athletes: win or else that's it.
  • Pursuing Your Dream: All the girls hope to make it to the Olympics and they give up much to pursue their dream, including leaving behind their home and family.
  • Injury & Illness: In the end the star athlete has a career-ending injury, which in turn leads to the thought that Katie was being pushed too hard.
  • Sport-Life Balance: When they decide to go home Katie's mother realizes that her job is to be a mother. She does not want Katie to become hurt in order to be win in a sport. Her life is more important.
  • Parents & Family: In order for Katie to move up, her entire family must make a commitment and make sacrifices to do so. However, her relationship with her family is part of the key to her success.
  • Substance Abuse: The girls put their bodies through so much and in turn suffer pain they must push through, to the point where the star athletes offers another girl prescription medicine.