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Bringing quality to local gymnastics

New gym: James is hoping his gymnasts will be able to compete locally and overseas (File photograph by Mark Tatem)

It may have only been up and running since September but Quality Gymnastics has already established a competitive girls’ team.

Located at the old Berkeley Institute Gym, Quality Gymnastics has about 50 members enrolled from beginners onwards, as well as having a recreational programme.

Peter James, the president of Quality Gymnastics, who previously held the same position at the Bermuda Gymnastics Association, said he had been overwhelmed with the interest since setting up the programme.

“We’ve had a tremendous response in the short time we’ve been in operation and a lot of young gymnasts have come out,” James said.

“Initially we offered recreational gymnastics but we have managed to get a few of girls with some talent to move into a competitive junior team.

“That’s what I really wanted and I think that’s great for gymnastics in Bermuda.”

James believes it is important for their to be more than one gymnastics club on the Island. He envisages the Quality Gymnastics team competing in meets against the BGA as early as next spring.

“We now have a higher level of competition on the Island.” he said. “We will start with local competitions and then hopefully go overseas. I have been in talks with the BGA and they are excited about having more than one gym on the Island.

“When you’re the only gym it’s hard to have higher-level competitions locally.”

James admits the old Berkeley Institute gym is not quite as large he would like, but he believes its central location is perfect to attract newcomers to the sport.

“It’s really been a challenge to get a centrally-located facility for gymnastics,” he said. “Even this gym is arguably a little small.

“When this place came available I thought, ‘why not give it a go’. Hopefully it will make the sport more available to people.”

Adam Lubinski, the club’s head coach, has been busy visiting several of Bermuda’s public schools, putting on demonstrations, and has been impressed with the natural talent of the youngsters.

The 22-year-old from Holland has been coaching for seven years and has obtained his professional coaching diploma, levels one, two and three, from the renowned International Gymnastics Camp in Pennsylvania.

“It’s the perfect opportunity for me,” Lubinski said.

“It’s been very diverse because besides coaching here I have visited schools to give demonstrations and tried to get kids into the gym.

“What makes it very satisfying is that people are very kind in Bermuda and the schools have been very helpful.

“[The competitors] are not at a very high level yet as many of them have not done gymnastics before. But there are definitely some talented kids in Bermuda.”

For more details e-mail qgym@logic.bm or visit www.qgymbda.com.