Memoirs of a gymnast....Introduction and chapter 1. | jenni855's Blog

Chapter 1_Beginnings
Chapter 2_Entering the squad
Chapter 3_ The trio and our first competition
Chapter 4- Camp and Food
Chapter 5_ Weight issues
Chapter 6_ I want to leave
Chapter 7_ Caroline
Chapter 8_ Time to go
Chapter 9_ A new group
Chapter 10_ Weight issues part 2.
Chapter 11_A mental block and the end.

Introduction- I don't know where the inspiration came from to start writing about my gymnastics career. All I know is that I want my story to be heard. I am hoping it will be a theraputic and liberating experience. I have demons that date back to this time in my life and now is the time to speak out about it. Being a professional gymnast is tough, both physically and mentally. My story will detail just that. I hope you enjoy reading it.

Chapter 1-Beginnings:
I can't remember the exact moment I got into gymnastics but I knew as soon as I saw the sport on television that I loved it and wanted to do it myself. My idol was Shannon Miller a US gymnast and still in my opinion, one of the best gymnasts the world has ever seen.
I remember one morning, I was watching gym on the telly and I asked my father if you had to be in a squad to get to the world championships! I was only 7 at the time but I laugh at how naieve I was!
My parents soon enrolled me in a gym club and my friend Katie came along with me. I remember our first leotard was blue. We started off just doing Saturday mornings. I don't remember the name of my first coach but I do remember Mike who we had later on as a coach. I had just turned 8 when I started gymnastics and that was considered late. Most gymnasts start out a lot earlier. However, I was picking up skills easily and I always remember the vault and attempting front handsprings over it. Mike was really encouraging and I felt so pleased to be doing what I loved.
It must have been a few months in when the event that would change my life happened. It was a normal Saturday and my group were all on the vault. A woman called Alison who ran the elite sports acrobatic team came up to Mike. She ran the team alongside her husband Bob. They spoke for a while and it was then that myself and Katie found we had been selected for the squad that Alison ran. It was as quick and simple as that. I don't know if we got chosen on ability or simply because we were two of the younger members of the group but that's what happened. Despite wanting to be as good as Shannon Miller, I cried when I got home as I didn't want to do it. I was happy in Mike's group and liked doing artistic gymnastics. I wasn't sure about switching to sports acrobatics and as I say, I didn't want to do it. I think my mother must have persuaded me as suddenly I found myself standing in a line of other newbies in the sports acro camp, all standing in a line. Instead of just doing Saturday mornings, we would have to attend every Tuesday and Thursday afternoon as well as Saturday mornings. Little did I know what it was going to be like.  From that day on, my childhood changed forever.

This Blog Entry's Comment Board (6 comments)
1-6 of 6 Comments   

Posted on 08:03PM on Feb 4th, 2013
I think that it's really great that you're writing your experience here growing up in the gymnastics world. I also think, like you said, it will be cathartic for you and allow yourself to vent everything that you need to about the subject. Keep writing my dear. I look forward to following this story as well as your regular blog. :)
Posted on 01:37AM on Feb 5th, 2013
Thank you. It means a lot that you are reading it. It really does, definitely makes me feel heard. x
Posted on 09:18AM on Feb 5th, 2013
Great so far! This is a wonderful idea Jenni. Keep it up! xx
Posted on 01:25PM on Feb 5th, 2013
Thank you xx I think it will shock a few people as it goes on. It won't always make for pleasant reading. xx
Posted on 02:20PM on Feb 5th, 2013
I suspect it won't always be pleasant - especially if your mother is in it (I mean no offense, she's just not the type to encourage in helpful ways). Maybe it will help you get to the bottom of some of your anxiety? In any case, will be interested to read along.
Posted on 02:28PM on Feb 5th, 2013
It does include them but also bad treatment at the hands of others. I am going to write the next part of it tonight. I am so honoured that my circle are taking such an interest in this xx
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Previous Posts
Saturday, 3rd January 2015, posted January 3rd, 2015
Gymnastics..., posted December 2nd, 2013, 5 comments
Letter to M....., posted August 19th, 2013
Memoirs of a gymnast......Caroline.......Chapter 7., posted February 10th, 2013, 3 comments
Memoirs of a gymnast.....I want to leave......Chapter 6., posted February 9th, 2013
Memoirs of a gymnast.....Weight issues.....Chapter 5., posted February 8th, 2013, 4 comments
Memoirs of a gymnast......Camp and food....Chapter 4., posted February 7th, 2013, 4 comments
Memoirs of a gymnast.....The trio and our first competition...Chapter 3., posted February 6th, 2013, 2 comments
Memoirs of a gymnast.....Entering the squad. Chapter Two., posted February 5th, 2013, 4 comments
Memoirs of a gymnast....Introduction and chapter 1., posted February 4th, 2013, 6 comments
A letter to my mother......, posted July 22nd, 2012, 1 comment
A lettter to Kirsty......, posted July 22nd, 2012
Tuesday, 20th March 2012....An open letter to my circle...., posted March 20th, 2012, 9 comments

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