How long have you been in Gym-Masters?
I’ve been a part of Gym-Masters for three years. I joined my sophomore year. This year, being my senior year, I am the head captain. Last year, my junior year, I was the guy’s captain.
Had you done gymnastics before?
All through high school, all four years, I was on the gymnastics team at Madison Academy.
Why did you decide to join?
I’ve always had a passion for gymnastics. I decided to join because I really missed it my freshman year. People told me that it was too hard on my schedule, and I came to realize that I had too much time in my schedule. So I wasn’t able to focus well enough in school. I would always think, “Oh, I can do it later. I have the time.” But joining Gym-Masters gave me a better framework. That way, I could prioritize better because I knew I only had certain times to do homework. That really helped me there, along with the passion I had for gymnastics.
How do you balance touring, practices, and full-time school?
It makes your time very valuable. I know that I don’t have these two hours at night (practice time). So to balance that out, I have to preset my days ahead of time. I have to think, “Okay, I have class from eight to 10, then I have an hour here when I can eat and possibly read, then I have class from one to two, now I have from two to six to study.” After that, Gym-Masters will usually wake me up because it’s good exercise. It gets my blood pumping. After gymnastics, I have two good hours, until about 10, when I’m fully awake. I can sometimes stretch it to 12 but it’s not as good for studying.
We set the schedule for tours at the beginning of each semester. So we know when those tours are coming. If you know you have a test that week and the tour is that weekend, you should study for your test ahead of time. It’s a lot about being aware of what is coming next, having responsibility for yourself and for your own actions.
How long is your longest tour?
Most spring breaks we go on a mission trip. This past one was to the Dominican Republic. But if we’re just doing gymnastics, it’s typically an Acrofest. We’ll typically leave on a Thursday or a Wednesday night, depending on how far the travel is, and get back on a Sunday. That’s five days.
What makes Gym-Masters worth it to you?
The biggest thing is the family atmosphere. A lot of people think that Gym-Masters is just a class or that Gym-Masters is just a group of people. It’s not. It’s one big friend group. You come the first week for tryouts, and you’re doing gymnastics and stuff like that, but after that it becomes this bonding experience that, being a senior, I’m going to miss the most when I leave.
After that, it would really have to be the exercise. It really helps me get exercise in. Because sometimes during the week, it’s really hard to say, “All right, I’m going to go to the gym today!” But you don’t. So being on Gym-Masters really helps you get exercise each day, Monday through Thursday.
What would you say to a new student thinking about trying out?
I would say, try it. There’s no reason to regret things in life. If you’re thinking about it at all, go for it. You don’t want to live life thinking what if. If you join it and you don’t end up liking it, there is the possibility of dropping out second semester. But why wait in life or why regret?
Bonus question: What is your favorite gymnastics move?
My favorite move is a move I recently just got. It’s a pair move called a double cupie. It’s where you have two girls, one standing on each hand, and you raise them both over your head and they hold on to each other’s shoulders.
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