Fab Five inspires young gymnasts
The success achieved by Team USA in women's gymnastics has spurred an interest in the sport and served as inspiration for young men and women who have been doing flips and tumbles for quite some time. YNN's Erin Clarke visited a local gym and caught up with the people who live for the sport of gymnastics.
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DEWITT, N.Y. -- Before the Fab Five were golden girls, they were doing flips and tumbles in a gym like this one, trading movies and sleep overs for tough days of work.
"On Mondays we start at three and we go until eight. We do about an hour of conditioning and then we do floor and tumble and then we go to bars and vault and beam," said 12-year-old, Dewey Riley.
There were also moms and dads pouring in hundreds of dollars and putting in hours of time to make their childrens' dreams come true.
"It is a commitment on the parents. You have to drive to the meets. You have to stay over some times. You have to be here. Drop them off. Pick them up," said Jill Riley.
And now that the world has seen that dedication pay off, the phones are ringing off the hook and more people are stopping by CNY Gym Centre in DeWitt.
"I saw gymnastics on TV, please I want to get my daughter in or son," said CNY Gym Centre owner, Candy Jenkins.
They girls and their families know that only the best of the best get to the Olympics, but even if they don't make it their hard work and effort still pays off.
"I've gained a lot of strength and definitely confidence," said 11-year-old, Racquel McDonald.
Skills that translate well into the classroom and have resulted in several CNY Gym Centre alum receiving scholastic honors.
"We've had many college scholarship gymnasts come through our program. Just in the past Olympics, Paul Ruggeri who placed sixth at the Olympic trials was a gymnast of ours and then he obviously went off to college on scholarship," said Jenkins.
So to the gymnastics community, these athletes win either way you put ii.
Gymnastics classes are offered throughout the country for all ages and levels. Children as young as 18 months can participate at CNY Gym Centre.