By Alena Leseten
SAN MARCOS – The Texas State Gymnastics Club is striving to make the top three in the Texas Gymnastics Conference (TGC) and have three to four girls compete at the national conference this year.
The Texas State Gymnastics Club is one of the oldest sports club in the history of the university. It was established in 1968 and continues to thrive. In the past the team has won various awards including sixth place Men’s Team NAIGC Nationals in 2010 and sixth place Men’s Team NAIGC Nationals, second place Women’s Team TGC State and third place Men’s Team TGC State in 2009. This year’s team is led by President Shelby Olsson and Vice President Bailey Stanfield.
This year the club currently has 29 team members, 12 of who will compete throughout the year and go to the TGC and NAIGC (National Association of Intercollegiate Gymnastics Club) conferences.
At the TGC, Texas State’s main competition will be Texas A&M University and the University of Houston. In order to try and take first or second place at the TGC Texas State’s gymnastic club has buckled down to increase training and improve their skill sets.
“This is the first time in three years we have enough girls to compete as a team,” vice president, Stanfield said. “We’re growing and we’re really excited about it because we have some really talented girls this year.”
The last two years the competitive team members have traveled to Philadelphia and Sacramento to compete at the national level. This year the NAIGC conference will be held in Columbus, Ohio. Each year 1300 or more college gymnasts compete at the national conference.
This is the first year Texas State will be able to compete as a “team” because they finally have enough members to be considered a team. The team will compete under the level eight requirements in hopes that they will be able to place and take home a trophy. Stanfield has competed at the NAIGC conference twice since being a part of the Texas State Gymnastics Club.
“I’m hoping to get at least 3 or 4 girls into final qualifications if everyone can keep themselves healthy,” Stanfield said.
The gymnastics club practices in the evenings every Monday through Thursday at the Aqua Sports Center on campus. The team is currently working towards improving their training and skills. They recently made improvements to the gym including fundraising enough money to afford a new spring floor that help improve training and skills.
Claire Eaves is a member of the Texas State gymnastics club and has been doing gymnastics since she was three. Eaves has had to overcome many injuries from the sport, including breaking her back three times. She enjoys competing and being a part of the team despite how hard the sport can be.
“Beam is my favorite event because it’s challenging and hurts when you fall,” competitive team member, Eaves said.
The Texas State Gymnastics Club not only trains and competes, but they also have fundraisers, community service projects and they offer gymnastics classes to kids through GymKatz.
The gymnastics club is open to all Texas State students at any gymnastics level. The club strives to provide gymnasts with the opportunity to engage in competition and be a part of a team. To learn more about Texas State Gymnastics Club visit https://www.facebook.com/TexasStateGymnastics/.
Audio By Emily Brown
Video By: Victoria Marin