VICTORY! “When you walk into the gym you leave everything behind. It’s like a total different world. It’s you second family. We gymnasts spend more time in the gym then with our parent’s. We do gymnastics not to please our family but to please ourselves. ” The day I found out all my training was worth it, was at the Glance- Silver Lake Gymnastics Invite. I got to this moment by Joining gymnastics and making the high school team, going to practice every day and giving it my all, and all the other meets I competed in to get ready for that day.
The day I walked into my first gymnastics class ever was at North Crest in 1st read. I was so excited to finally be able to do gymnastics. All I did was sat tentatively listening to my coach and trying everything I was asked to do. Being able to do all the jumps, leaps, and flips my coach asked me to do, showed me that I have the potential to be good at this sport.
So after being in gymnastics for 6 years, I decided to try out for the High School team at school. After being evaluated on all my skill levels for 3 days on all events, it was time to figure out who made the Team.Amber, my coach called up name after name to come get there acceptance. Once she got to the last paper I figured I didn’t make the team, but she called my name and I flew right up there. There was no words to describe how happy I was to have made the team my 7th grade year. Usually people do not make the team until they reach their high school years. In every practice we stretch and do lines, then we work on our routines for every event, then at the end of practice we do super intense workouts to get us in shape to be able to compete our routines and to get us in shape to do harder skills.This now brings us to the practices I had the week before my big meet.
“Hard work and determination leads to success”, that is our motto in the gym. For the week leading up to the Glance- Silver Lake Invite practice was brutal. We would get to the gym and run a mile and light condition to get our body warm for practice. After that we would go through lines, which are basics on floor. Then we would split up the team into JP and Varsity girls. Varsity went to beam and JP floor.
This particular week we were really focused on beam and floor. Once we got to beam we all warmed up our beam skills.Once I got up on the beam I did a full turn, couple of Jumps, round off, then a switch wolf- tuck full, then the best part the dismount which I have round-off full twisting backfill off. I am standing at the end of the beam focusing, the team is screaming for my dismount.
I’m thinking in my head “here we go, don’t slip, go hard. ” And I stuck the landing, we all realized we are ready for the big meets we have this week. Now it’s Thursday and we have a meet against Cartels. It’s a home meet so we all are waiting for them to arrive at the gym.
We are all huddled up talking about the meet that night and what we need to do to be successful. Then we all run single file line “this is important because it makes our team look intimidating. After the run we stretch in a circle all of our muscles to get them ready to be pulled stretched, twisted, walk in. Now we start screaming super loud to make Cartels look at us and be very nervous that they don’t have a chance of beating us. Both teams go through warm ups, then JP kids compete; we then do walkout, and then the moment of truth the varsity competition.
Meets run in Olympic order vault, bars, beam, floor. Auk Rapids nailed vault and bars, and only have two events to go. Now we get a three minute touch it begins with myself, Sydney, Alyssa, Becky, and Elena as we warm up our kills. Buzzer sounds and Becky waits for the Judge to salute, then Elena is next on beam next. By now I am fidgeting and taking my warm ups off and wait for Elena to land her dismount and salute. Time has now come for my routine, my feet are sweating so bad that I have to drag and wipe them around on the mat.Here comes the Judges’ mark and I then get up on beam, I go through my routine like nothing fazes me.
I get to my last skill before my dismount it’s a tuck full Jump. This is a bonus skill that gives your routine a higher start value, which makes my routine out of 10. . High in the air I Jump, twist with my legs tucked and somehow I land back on the beam right where I started but with a big wobble, but manage to save it. “One, two, three go’ I think in my head before I leap into my incredibly hard bonus dismount and I NAILED IT! My team mates and the Storm fans in the crowd cheer incredibly loud.Sydney and Alyssa feed off of my energy and how well I did on beam and end up doing Just as well. For our last rotation at the meet our team moves to floor exercise, which is the deciding factor on if we beat our rivals or not.
All 5 girls on the arrest made it through their full floor routines with landing on their feet on for all three passes. Signal of the last salute from the last girl tells us that competition is over; the team huddles up and sits in a circle. By now we are all praying as they read the scores for each individual events, first JP is read then varsity.Vault and bars pass, now 5th, 4th, 3rd place pass for beam. I’m still waiting for my name to be called and I am thinking I didn’t place, “then for 2nd place with 9.
0 Adrian Harris from Auk Rapids Storm” was called, I leap up off the floor and wave to the crowd. It made me so pappy to place finally, but now we had more things to worry about the team scores. JP was read SIR with 121. 025 with the win, and for VARSITY is 138. 05 to 137. 975 win goes to the STORM! Our faces Just elite up and we all know we are for sure ready for the big meet on Saturday. Saturday rolls around, its 5 a. .
Every girl walks into the gym with their hair done with braided bangs and bow in, with their warm ups on, carrying a blanket for the long bus ride. We all march on to the bus like zombies with our bags in hand filled with food, oleos, hairspray, and bobby pins to keep our hair in place all meet. Once we sit down and settle in we all pass out on the ride up to Glance. Bright gym lights awaken us as we trudge into the huge gym filled with 8 teams. Quickly we find our locker room to change into our warm up leotard, hairspray our hair, and bobby pin loose hairs.Brisk cold air fills around me when I walk into the competition area.
Just our luck the heater for the gym had broken the night before and the gym was about 50 some degrees in the gym. Coaches complained, even gymnasts complained about the cold gym because of all the complaints the meet almost got cancelled, but we all pushed through it. At invites team get a random event to start with then follow Olympic order, we got to start with beam. We get 12 minute timed warm up to warm hopped on to the beam and tried to do my Jumps, round-off, and full turn but I kept falling on everything.
It felt like I was getting Hypothermia even doing all the movement from the skills. One minute now remains in warm up and I still haven’t landed a single skill. Tears start rolling down my face and I become so frustrated because I can’t stand doing poorly.
Tight hugs slowly surround me as my whole team hug me and give me encouraging words of advice. This makes me feel a lot better because my team is like all my sisters and Just knowing they are supporting me is the best feeling in the world. All the rotations of warm ups pass and the meet begins.Becky kicks off our line up on beam and sticks the entire routine and everyone that was ahead of me on the beam line up did the same, now it’s my turn.
Sault to the judge begins my routine; I then swing my leg over the beam and begin to take deep breaths. My routine had now begun; first I did a full turn landed without even a slight wobble. Next was my first leap series, I nailed that, now I am thinking “Oh no here goes the round-off, please stay on”. Leg now lifts to hurdle into the round-off and landed perfectly.