The last couple of Wednesdays I went over to Gloucester to join in with the Cheltenham School of Gymnastics (yes I know, I don't know why it wasn't in Cheltenham). This was my second most nerve wracking sport (behind diving) as I have never done any gymnastics in my life and I was unsure how much I could actual do in my not so fit state.
I got a bit of a shock when I first turned up as it looked like I was going to be training with a load of under 10s, but when I found my group there were some older teenagers there too which made me feel better (especially as I don't quite look my grand old age of 29). I joined in with the recreational group, this group had the girls who didn't want to compete or who had started late (you know, after the age of 7 or so). We started both sessions with an hour (YES AN HOUR) of conditioning. This was hard core conditioning, we're talking about circuits that were much harder then anything I did in athletics training as a child. As the girls are 'late' starters to gymnastics they need to build up their strength to do the fun stuff.
On the second half of the sessions we got to have some fun on the apparatus. On the uneven bars with some (lots) of help from the coaches I was able to mount by some form of spin and spin again. This was with lots of support but still managed it. I did some handsprings into the foamy pit. I was very happy to be able to do this. What I was most proud of was the beam. It is a job in itself walking on the beam, but I managed to do a forward roll on the beam unaided and with a bit of help I also rolled onto the beam from jumping on the trampette (does that make sense?). I also was able to do a few other skills, lots of cartwheels, round offs, with support I did a flick (go back into a crab and flick legs over) and handstands.
I really enjoyed gymnastics, it really felt like I had done something completely new and achieved something. I have a lot of new respect for gymnasts, it is a majorly hard sport. I am very glad I did it, and when I see the gymnasts on the beam at the Olympics I can pretend I was as good as them!
Here is my usual plea for sponsorship, every penny helps so if you are able please sponsor me here. I would once again like to thank everyone who has sponsored me so far, it is greatly appreciated!