Despite the blustering snowstorm that dumped more snow in the area, the local gymnastics club held their second annual Gymtastiks Invitational meet.
There were six clubs and approximately 170 athletes from around the province, including Regina, Weyburn and Yorkton.
“It went really good,” said Gymtastiks coach Lacey Smith. “We doubled from last year.”
The competition was held at the Hillcrest Sports Centre over the weekend with the provincial level gymnasts competing on Saturday and then the recreational kids on Sunday.
The club and athletes are about halfway through the season with the provincial level competitors have already been to a couple of events this season, whereas, some of the others were competing for the first time.
“The provincials kids have competed already and they have improved from their first competition, which is good to see,” said Smith. “The goal is to get a qualifying score for provincials. They need to qualify at two different competitions with a certain score in order to qualify. That’s the score that our gymnasts are looking for.”
In the recreational category, the gymnasts are just learning the basics of the sport, as many are very young still.
“A lot of the other kids, it was their first competition ever, so they were just learning how a competition goes and what to expect for future events,” she said.
At the provincial level, the Gymtastiks club has nine athletes that compete and three — Justyne Mayo, Sara McLeod and Kaylee Maruska have all qualified for provincials. However, there are still two more events that the other gymnasts can qualify through, including this weekend in Saskatoon and another event in April in Yorkton.
With the season at the midway point, it gave Smith and the other coaches a chance to evaluate where their own gymnasts are at, as well as where the other athletes are from around the province.
“I see that as the year goes along, the kids keep improving and learning new skills and learning how to compete in front of the judges, especially for some of the younger kids,” stated Smith. “Overall, I see the sport of gymnastics just growing each year, which shows the dedication from some of the parents and the volunteers that help out.”
Overall, this season has been very successful; as the club has seen over 400 kids come to the club since September, as the Olympics helped boost local interest. For the weekend, Smith was happy with how each gymnast did as well.
“They all did really good. It makes a big difference when you are competing on your own equipment that they practice on all the time. It is different going to different clubs,” she said. “I was impressed with how everyone did and we look forward to the future competitions.”