PROVO, Utah — BYU gymnastics concluded coaching younger athletes in its final session of summer camps last week.
Competitive female gymnasts participated in the first two weeks of camp while beginning to intermediate gymnasts received instruction in four weeks of cub camps. Most weeks saw upwards of 70 or 80 participants.
“It’s a great opportunity (for the girls) to interact with young students of gymnastics and go back to their roots of getting started,” BYU head coach Guard Young said.
Sarah Hancock of Spanish Fork, Utah, signed her sons up for the final week of cub camp. Neither of them had participated in gymnastics before, but they were able to try new tricks on the right equipment in a safe environment. They both a great a time and came away with more endurance.
“They’ve learned they can push themselves farther than they thought,” Hancock said.
Ten-year-old Justin Hancock loved swinging on the higher uneven bar while his eight-year-old brother Joseph enjoyed learning how to do front flips and other jumps on the trampoline. Joseph loved camp so much that he wants to buy a gym when he grows up.
BYU senior gymnast Taylor Harward's favorite part of running camps is getting to know the campers and seeing how much they progress in a short time. Harward also loves the connection she builds with gymnasts who attend camp over the years or multiple weeks of the summer. Harward, as a high school camp participant herself, was able to get a feel of the BYU gymnastics program and see if it would be a good fit for her.
Young is impressed with his gymnasts’ commitment this summer. In addition to running camps and working in the gym with campers, the Cougars trained on their own in preparation for next season.
“There’s something to be said about how disciplined they are and what they give up,” Young said.
Harward described her summer routine as working out, coaching and then working out some more.
“It is tough, it wears you out,” Harward said. “It can be tiring, but the biggest thing is you know what’s ahead.”