Life as a performance gymnasts from a gymnasts point of view!

gym pic skillQ1. What age did you start gymnastics?

A1. I started at the age of 4 at a club in Ruislip which closed down. At the age of 5 I moved to Harefield Gymnastics Club and I’ve been there ever since, so that about 10 years!

Q2. What is it about gymnastics that you like most?

A2. I like the variation you get in gymnastics as oppose to other sports, which I’ve also tried. Every training session is different, for example we may concentrate on ‘partnership working’ in one session or ‘tumbling’ or ‘conditioning’, so the variety really helps to keep gymnastics fun.

Q3. What does a typical gymnastics training session include?

A3. At performance level our training sessions last about 3-3.5 hours, so we pack a lot in! Usually we start with ‘conditioning’ – this consists of fitness training, stamina and core training and running.

Then we move onto ‘Stretching’ which is important for any gymnast as we need to be very flexible for our routines and skill sets.

As acrobatic gymnasts we work as ‘bases’ or ‘tops’ and so in training we split into our groups. Bases work on building strength as they need to hold and throw the tops. The tops work on strength and preparing for skills and partner work.

Finally in partnerships we work on developing and perfecting the acrobatic skills we perform in our routines.

Q4. How many hours do you train for and how do you balance school work and gym?

A4. We train for 18 hours a week ( and a little bit more during the holidays). My school, like a lot of the gymnasts, is quite supportive and gives me extra time in school to get my work done.

A lot of my homework I will get done at the weekend when I have more time. But doing this amount of training with school work makes us all very good with time management and disciplined about our time!

Q5. How many competitions have you done and which was your most memorable one?

A5. I have done lots of competitions while I’ve been a gymnast at Harefield Gymnastics Academy and I really enjoy these, although they are always nerve racking. We tend to compete in 5 or 6 competitions through the 6-8 month competition season.

My best competition was in Turin in Italy. This was an international competition which was great for team building. It was also great to get to see other countries competing to see what they are like.

Q6. Do you feel you miss out on seeing your friends/social life because of your training schedule?

A6. Obviously there are things I do miss out on: parties; girls nights in; shopping trips and stuff like that. But my friends are very understanding so will change events to days I’m not doing gym. Also though, all the gymnasts I train with are really close and we are all really good friends in the gym as we spend so much time together, which expands my group of friends from just school friends. We go out together, so actually I get the best of both worlds.

Q7. Do you perform on your own at gymnastics?

A7. No, in acrobatic gymnastics we work in partnerships (unlike artistic gymnastics). I work in a trio – my trio consists of a ‘top’, ‘middle’ and ‘base’ – I am the ‘middle’. The top always tends to be younger as they fly around everywhere! As well as performing acrobatic skills in our routines we also incorporate lots of dance.

Q8. What is the your biggest achievement to date at gymnastics?

A8. I came 4th in the British Championships in Liverpool when I was aged 12.

Q9. What motivates you to train and compete at elite level?

A9. The feeling of getting a medal at a competition motivates me as it’s hard to achieve. So people recognise this as an achievement when you do medal at competitions, because at performance level the competition from other clubs is high as well. Getting medals makes all the training worthwhile.

Q10.  What would you say to someone who is thinking of taking up gymnastics at Harefield Gymnastics Academy?

A10. If you want something consistent and more long term then this is the sport for you. It’s fun, rewarding, hard work, you make great friends. It keeps you fit and healthy and makes you more disciplined. I can’t imagine life without gymnastics. So if your willing to do it I’d say ‘go for it, just do it’…………..

If you are interested in booking a free taster trial or squad trial then please visit the ‘book a free taster’ section on the website.





The British Championships

Unfortunately injury plagued many of the gymnasts hoping to compete at the biggest competition of the year – the British Championships.  This competition is for performance gymnasts who compete in age group catergories, 11-16, 12-18, 13-19 in women and men’s pair, women’s group, mixed pairs, men’s groups and seniors.

Despite huge disappointment at not being able to compete, many of the HGA performance squad gymnasts went along to Fenton Manor Sports Centre, in Stoke -on Trent, to support the women’s senior trio as they competed in a highly competitive and exciting field at the British Championships.

The women’s senior trio took Bronze medal after a great ‘combined routine’ in the finals of the competition, which gives them an overall ranking of 3rd in the UK. Well done girls!

Kyla, Amber & Sophia - Women's Senior trio
It’s Bronze at The British

What’s Next?…

Our NDP and Performance squads are now busy preparing for the ‘Premlims’ Competition being held in Dartford, on 25th March, which is the precursor to the National Finals in May, for all gold medalists on the day.

For our younger general gymnasts, they are busy preparing for our Club championships on Sunday 4th March 2018, where there will be a chance to show parents their progress. They will also have an opportunity to win medals too. So pop that date in your diary, as the young gymnasts are always proud to show what they have achieved.

Remember, hard work, commitment and enthusiasm produces results!



Gold, Silver & Bronze!

The First Competition of 2018…

Spelthourne Gymnastic Club hosted the first two day competition in early February with some of the best clubs from around the country, participating in ‘grades’ and ‘age group’ categories.

We had a number of National Development Programe (NDP) level gymnasts competing for the first time over the two day event in mixed pairs categories, men’s pairs, women’s pairs and women’s groups. With new partnerships, routines and competing for the first time for many, in a highly competitive field, this was a great learning and development experience for them all.

With a good clean round, our men’s pair performed their upbeat grade 4 routine and took silver, narrowly missing out on the gold medal by 0.5 of a mark. The HGA pair scored 25.100 with the Richmond winners getting 25.150.

Our senior women’s trio performed their three routines: balance, dynamic and combined (a combination of their balance and dynamic skills), to take the gold medal on the day. This was good preparation for the girls before the forthcoming British Championships in Stoke.

The competition season is underway for our gymnasts at HGA and for some of our younger gymnasts this has been their first time performing choreographed routines on a competition floor, in front of judges. Our performance squad gymnasts have also had the opportunity to try out new partnership.








Goodbye 2017, Welcome 2018

Welcome to Harefield Gymnastics Academy blog section on our website. Our blogs are intended to give you an update and overview of the club, where we are, what we are aiming for over the coming year from our young recreational gymnasts to our older, more experienced elite gymnasts, and news and updates about classes, competitions, displays and life generally at the gym.

Christmas was a busy time with club championships for our NDP and Performance squads. It is a good opportunity for squads to perform together to give encouragement and support all round. Our Christmas parties for all gymnasts were a big hit and they were a fitting and rewarding end to the last gym term of 2017. Our elite performance squad had just as much fun, if not more, playing fail proof party games such as the classic favourite ‘Sardines’!

With Christmas over we head into the competitive season with our first competition of the year at ‘Spelthorne’ on the 3rd and 4th of February. Hopefully we may be able to bring home some medals here. This is hotly pursued by the British Championships which is being held in Stoke this year between the 15th-18th February. Remember our younger gymnasts can watch and support our performance gymnasts at the British Championships by downloaded and tuning in to the BGTV app!

We will post more blog updates after these competitions to let you know how our squads performed and to see what out younger gymnasts have been getting up to as we head into 2018