Four Farmington gymnasts met Olympic gold medalistsOne might think performing before an audience is tough enough. But performing gymnastics routines before some of the USA’s Olympic gold medalists? Well, apparently, that’s just plain fun.
By: Michelle Leonard, The Farmington Independent
One might think performing before an audience is tough enough. But performing gymnastics routines before some of the USA’s Olympic gold medalists? Well, apparently, that’s just plain fun.
At least, that’s the popular opinion among four young gymnasts from Farmington who got to perform before members of the 2012 Olympic gymnastics team and coaches last week. Amaya Mathias, 10, Myiah Scott, 11, Abigail Shearer, 9, and Madison Jones, 10, represented Farmington Community Education’s Twist n’ Tumble gymnastics program at last week’s Kellogg’s Tour of Champions 2012.
The girls participated in the opening ceremony of the event, with Scott leading one of the two lines of gymnasts. Twist n’ Tumble is a registered USA gym, which made the local program eligible to participate, coach Lynn Bauman said.
The number of participants was driven by the number of event tickets sold by Farmington’s program. Once it became clear Farmington could send four members, Bauman asked all of the club’s membership to vote for the two members they thought would represent Twist n’ Tumble best.
“I was really impressed by them,” Bauman said. “I figured a lot of them would vote for themselves and someone else, but that didn’t happen as much as I thought it would. I was very proud of them.”
Once the four girls were selected, they went to work. Bauman received a copy of the program the girls would be doing in the ceremony, and they had about a month to work on it. Of course, once they got there, the program was changed a bit and the girls had to learn how to do the new moves, but they were up for the challenge.
The event included a performance by members of the 2012 women’s and men’s Olympic gymnastics teams. The girls were thrilled to watch some of their heroes live, but they also got to see the Olympians doing routines they do not normally do in televised competition, which was also pretty cool.
The girls also got to meet a few of the gymnasts. In a separate event, the girls sat two feet from the Olympians during the “Chalk Talk” question and answer session. They also got to do a meet and greet with a few of the team members.
“Aly Raisman just talked to us like we were friends for year,” Jones said.
To be sure, the young gymnasts were excited to attend the tour, Bauman said. They did a very good job representing Farmington, too.
“They were so giddy. It was cute,” Bauman said, “but I was really proud of them. They worked really hard.”
Meeting Olympians does tend to be a little inspirational, too. After meeting gold medalists, the Farmington girls are ready to get a few gold medals of their own someday. And maybe even Olympic gold medals.
At the very least, the girls learned a very valuable lesson.
“They’re normal people like us, and they had a dream to make it to the Olympics so they worked as hard as they could to make that dream come true,” Jones said.