The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

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The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

The Oracle

The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

The Oracle

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Girls’ gymnastics leaps to success


The balance beam is not the only thing Girls’ Gymnastics will be balancing on this upcoming season. The team looks to create a healthy divide between the mental and physical aspects of the sport, as well as making a mean-
ingful impact in their conference.

Stephen Gale, Girls’ Gymnastics Head Coach, has been coach-
ing at South for 41 years. One of the lessons he instills and teaches his athletes is  that there is always a way to overwork and that might take a toll on one’s body, Gale said.

“It is possible to overtrain,” Gale said. “You can push yourself to the breaking point and get injured as well as lose everything. It is like trying to poke a balloon with a pin without breaking it.”While making sure the athletes keep their bodies in good shape, Gale also coaches to win at the varsity level, these two parts of the sport go hand in hand, Gale explained. Although, his utmost favorite aspect about coaching at South is the relationships he creates with the athletes.

“It is really about the girls, the athletes, thekids,” Gale said. “They make the sport, win or lose, if I have a good relationship with the kids. I enjoy interacting with them. I enjoy coaching with them.”

Raelyn Robbins, varsity and all-around gymnast has also developed relationships with her teammates and coaches.

“I like competing in high school, because it is more of a team sport than an individual sport.” Robbins said.

Gymnasts take on not only physical toll, but mental ones as well. Sometimes performing a certain skill can take time to master physically, but even more time to perfect mentally.

“Sometimes the skills are scary to go for and that is all mental,” Robbins said. “There are things that people are scared to do. But, even though they can do it, it is still sometimes stressful.”

Persevering through this mental challenge is one of the hardest parts of gymnastics along with the pressure of physical demands, Robbins explained. Getting through one’s mental block is the first step on the staircase of mastery.
The physical aspect of gymnastics also adds an extra layer of toughness to an already demanding sport Lauren Johnson, Assistant Girls’ Gymnastics Coach,
explained. Johnson is in her sixth year coaching at South and looks forward to preparing athletes for competitions by conditioning and playing games to keep the athletes engaged.

“We have creative games, activities, and conditioning to keep them engaged,” Johnson said. “A positive mindset and encouragement goes a long way.”

Johnson also competed when she was younger and that her previous experience enabled her to be mentally and physically stronger. This strength not only applies her gymnastics skills, but also to the real world, Johnson explained.

“Gymnastics taught me how to push myself and never give up,” Johnson said.

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