Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Games Legacy Gives Gym Club Big Boost; Surge in Academy Interest Follows Glory for Team GB Gymnastics

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Games Legacy Gives Gym Club Big Boost; Surge in Academy Interest Follows Glory for Team GB Gymnastics

Article excerpt

ONE of the region's top gymnastics clubs is preparing to welcome hundreds of new recruits following Team GB's stunning Olympic gymnastics success.

Deerness Gymnastics Academy has received huge interest from people wanting to take up the sport since the London Games ended earlier this month.

It seems many are inspired to follow in the footsteps of bronze medallist Beth Tweddle and double medallist Max Whitlock.

Deerness hope that surge in interest will continue on Monday when the club resume their recreational classes for youngsters, with hundreds of places available.

These will run run both on weekdays after school and at weekends, making use of the world-class facilities at Deerness. Karl Wharton, director of gymnastics at the Academy, said: "The Olympic legacy is all about inspiring the next generation.

"We had more than 300 children take part in our summer sessions with many returning time and time again.

"It is fantastic so many people are wanting to give gymnastics a try and we will try our hardest not to turn people away.

"These sessions are a great way of learning and practising gymnastic skills and strengths at the same time as having fun.

"They will hopefully inspire and encourage more people to get involved with the club."

Experienced international coaches as well as members of Acropolis, who won the ITV 'Lets Get Gold' show, will conduct the sessions, which are available to boys and girls from three years upwards.

However, it is not just children who are being encouraged to take up the sport.

The Academy is starting its first sessions for adults, starting on Thursday, September 6. No gymnastic experience is necessary. Wharton added: "The confidence people gain from taking part in a sport and excelling at something and also enjoying it has a positive effect on their lives. …

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