The Opening Ceremony kicked off the official start of the 2016 Rio Olympics this past weekend, so it's only fitting that I write my blog on what I believe to be the most challenging, yet graceful sport - gymnastics. When I was six years old, my mother put me in gymnastics classes. I presume the deciding factor was me using the end of her brand new sofa as a vault.
Gymnastics was invented in Ancient Greece. It focused on strengthening both the mind and the body, and was mostly used to prepare soldiers for war. Gymnastics, and the equipment used, has advanced over the years to keep up with the gymnasts' safety and performance. There are four events for women gymnastics - uneven bars, balance beam, floor exercise, and vault.
I was able to experience the change in gymnastics equipment over the years and it made me more confident to pursue harder, more ambitious skills. At a young age, I always took baby steps the closer I got to the spring board for my vault exercise, and smashed my body into the horse (vault) due to my own fear. However, I was not alone. Many of the gymnasts on my team shared the same fear. Once I started to compete on the new vault, I had less fear and able to start mastering harder skills.
Gymnastics is a very tough and demanding sport that requires a lot of patience and hard work. In gymnastics, in order to move to a more challenging skill, you have to master the easy skills first. These skills require many years to master so gymnasts learn early on that the words “I can't” bring on an endless amount of push-ups from coaches. The sport of gymnastics and it complexity has been constantly evolving over the years and the equipment has to keep up with this change in order to keep injuries low.
Hope you all enjoy the summer Olympics.
LET THE GAMES BEGIN!