In the wake of major changes, the Trail Gymnastics Club will send a record number of gymnasts to the provincial championships this month.
The Trail club qualified nine gymnasts to compete at the BC Compulsory Championships, Apr. 5-7, in Langley, and will also send four gymnasts to the BC Artistic Gymnastics Championships held in Coquitlam, Apr. 12-14.
The sport of Women’s Artistic Gymnastics has been changing rapidly over the past several years. In 2014, Gymnastics BC overhauled its provincial competitive program and introduced the US Junior Olympic program Levels 1 through 10, replacing the previous 5 level provincial system.
This brought with it challenges for current provincial level athletes as they tried to fit their current skill sets into a new set of requirements. After five years, things are progressing well and gymnasts are building a solid base of skills to work with as they move through their gymnastics journey.
For the past four years only gymnasts in Level 5 or higher, and only those who qualified to their zone team by being one of the top gymnasts in their region, were eligible to compete at the BC Championships.
New for this season, Gymnastics BC has introduced a championship event for Levels 2 to 5 called the BC Artistic Compulsory Gymnastics Championships, with new qualifying procedures.
Gymnasts who compete in the compulsory levels perform identical routines and are judged for their performance of these mandatory routines on Vault, Uneven Bars, Balance Beam and Floor Exercise. To qualify for this new championship gymnasts must achieve a minimum all-around score of 32.00, which is the sum of their scores on all four apparatus.
Gymnastics BC also implemented this same qualification requirement for Level-6 gymnasts to attend the BC Artistic Gymnastics Championships, where athletes perform individualized routines based on set composition criteria for each of Junior Olympic Levels 6-10. This championship includes BC’s Men’s Artistic gymnasts and high performance and national level athletes.
With these changes, Trail Gymnastics Club is excited to be sending its largest ever contingent to BC Provincial Championships this year, with all of its eligible athletes having already met the qualifying standard well ahead of the March 10 deadline.
Trail gymnasts who qualified for the 2019 BC Compulsory Championships are: Level 2: Chloe Tanguay, Jasmine Tanguay, Kate Marsh, Ayva Duclos, Level 3: Indica Richardson, Aili Dergoussoff, Jasmine Chow, Lorelei Ricketts, Roree Johannson, Madelyn MacDonald, Level 4: Jorja Kapral, Makayla Gademans, Gabby Paterson, and Annika Belluz. Qualifying for the 2019 BC Artistic Gymnastics Championships are: Level 6: Ellery Shields, Jasmine Wyatt, and Eileen Zheng. Level 7: Jendaya Shields.
The club sent just two gymnasts in 2018, and one gymnast in 2016 and 2017, respectively.
As a sport, gymnastics is among the highest for youth participation in British Columbia with 44,000 gymnasts registered with Gymnastics BC province wide. According to BC Hockey, 55,000 youth are registered with minor hockey in BC and the Yukon. Locally, over 500 youth are registered annually with Trail Gymnastics Club, which is the third largest club in the Kootenays.