In less than a month's time the TeamGym British Championships will take place at Echo Arena, Liverpool as one of four disciplines in our spectacular Championship Series event. Hema Gaur-Sharma from Portsmouth is one of Britain’s top stars. She explains why she got involved in the sport and why people shouldn't miss the chance to watch it live…
“I stumbled across TeamGym accidently when I was 11 years old, in my small club, Portsmouth School of Gymnastics. Artistic was the main discipline and TeamGym was just starting out. I was asked to fill in for another TeamGym gymnast who had been injured and couldn’t compete. I enjoyed the experience so much I decided to train in that discipline alongside artistic. As time went on I began enjoying TeamGym more and more, and within a year, my training was solely focused on TeamGym. Gymnastics has always been a sport I’ve had to work at; skills do not come naturally to me. However, I am able to overcome this with my determination and ‘never give up’ attitude. I may fall a hundred times, but with each fall I learn and try again. This makes my success in the sport even more gratifying.”
How much time do you invest in TeamGym? (training, competing, etc.)
“I train approximately 12 hours a week, and also coach 12 hours per week, and consider the gym my second home. Gymnastics is incorporated in my everyday life, I compete roughly 3 times a year, as a gymnast and with my team, and I am continually preparing for the next event.”
What do you like most about it?
“The most enjoyable part of this sport is the ‘family’ that develops with your teammates and coaches. I love training and competing with my team, watching every member grow within the sport and also as an individual. I also love achieving new skills. Every new skill I learn is an accomplishment for the team and myself. The TeamGym family also extends outside the walls of Portsmouth School of Gymnastics and I particularly enjoy the travelling and social events with my team and my coaches. It is this ‘family’ created by the nature of the sport that I enjoy most. My TeamGym family is one I will cherish forever.”
How would you explain TeamGym to people who don’t know it?
“TeamGym involves three disciplines: Floor, tumble and trampet (mini-trampoline). There is minimum of 8 gymnasts in a team and a maximum of 12. The teams can be all men, all women, or an equal mix of men and women. Whatever the number of gymnasts there are in a team, they must all perform the floor routine. On trampet and tumble the best 6 are selected and they must perform 3 runs on each and must demonstrate a style referred to as streaming. This is what makes it exciting. Streaming is like a runaway train, one gymnast after the other. The aim is to achieve the highest score possible on all three apparatus. The gymnasts must perform as a team, rather than an individual.”
Why should people come and watch a TeamGym competition?
“TeamGym is such a dynamic and exciting sport that involves so many gymnasts. In competition the atmosphere within the gym is electric, with complicated skills performed whilst streaming one after the other. It offers an amazing display of multiple somersaults and twists on the tumble track and off trampet, and a mesmerising display of choreography in a synchronised floor routine. The ambience is energetic, loud and powerful. There is continually something to feast your eyes on. Everyone comes together to perform a big show to entertain the audience, allowing gymnasts to show off their talents.”
Want to watch Hema and her team in action? Get your tickets now for the British Gymnastics Championship series.