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Shepherd hosts 2018 Region 6 Trampoline and Tumbling Championships

By Staff | May 18, 2018

Tabitha Johnston/Chronicle A gymnast gets a running start before flipping across a track during the Trampoline and Tumbling Regionals.

Martinsburg-Berkeley County Parks and Recreation’s Flip Over Gymnastics hosted the 2018 Region 6 Trampoline and Tumbling Championships at Shepherd University’s Butcher Center over the weekend.

The event allowed male and female participants to qualify to move onto the USA Gymnastics Championships for Individual and Synchronized Trampoline, Power Tumbling and the Double Mini Trampoline.

“I want people to do as well as they do in practice this weekend,” said KMC Gymnastics Coach Paul Wiley, of Westchester, Pennsylvania. Wiley brought a team of about 16 competitors to the event.

“I’ve been doing gymnastics so long, I can’t imagine not doing it,” Wiley said, adding that he’s been coaching gymnastics for about 40 years. “It can be aggravating at times, but when kids make a breakthrough and do something they couldn’t do yesterday, it’s amazing.”

Five hundred fifty-four competitors traveled to the event from Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, Vermont, West Virginia and the District of Columbia.

Dana Callahan, of eastern Maryland, came to support her 8-year-old daughter, Mary.

“She’s already qualified on the trampoline, so she’s here to qualify on tumbling and the double mini,” said Callahan, while Mary practiced tumbling with her coaches. “We definitely want to go to nationals in Reno, but we don’t want to just do it in trampoline.

“She loves it,” Callahan added. “I try to keep her home, but then she starts jumping off the couch, so I feel that mats are a safer environment for her to work out her energy.”

Brian Hollingsworth, president of Bull Run Academy of Gymnastics Booster Club, was supporting his 12-year-old daughter, Sarah.

“We’re relatively new to this,” said Hollingsworth, who’s from Haymarket, Virginia. “We’re experts in gymnastics stuff, but we’re new to the tumbling thing.”

Like the majority of the Trampoline and Tumbling competitors, Sarah transitioned from artistic gymnastics when it began to conflict with her academic life. Now that she’s gotten used to her middle school workload, she’s back to artistic gymnastics as well.

“She was very busy in gymnastics; it got to be too much,” Hollingsworth said. “T and T was a great way for her to stay in it, but not do everything.”

According to Hollingsworth, artistic gymnasts have to work out about 25 hours a week.

“Tumbling is our way of keeping her involved with her friends. You get really close, and we didn’t want her to let it go,” Hollingsworth said. “It’s also a confidence builder. If you get a little self confidence, you challenge yourself. You can go a long with with that.”