A gymnastics team is flying the flag for North Tyneside at a prestigious national championship next month.
Tyneside Gymnastics’ youth section has qualified for the British TeamGym Championships for the second time in the club’s four-and-half-year history.
The finals, which take place in Liverpool on August 1 and 2, bring together gymnastic squads who have been successful in regional qualifiers across the UK to the sport’s premier competition.
Tyneside TeamGym head coach Emma Crowe said: “This is a brilliant achievement for our talented young gymnasts. Just qualifying is a huge success when you consider we train in a sports hall without some of the specialist equipment of other clubs. To do so for a second time is really exciting.”
The club, which have also been asked to entertain fans at university basketball and televised NSL Team Northumbria netball matches this season, currently train in the sports hall in Tyne Met’s Alexander Road facilities in North Shields but are looking to move into their own premises.
Tyneside Gymnastics Club head coach, Lynsey White, who also oversees the artistic and general gymnastics squads, said: “We are currently raising funds and looking for sponsors to help us find our own premises.
“The dream is to bring gymnastics to all and to help people discover – or re-discover – the fun of gymnastics in a safe, supporting environment.”
TeamGym is an offshoot of regular gymnastics, where teams of between six and 12 perform a series of tumbles, trampette moves and vaults in a streaming formation, followed by a group floor display.
Tyneside are hoping to include a special ‘run’ where all six of their gymnasts perform a double front somersault off a trampette one after another.
Young gymnast Ellie Higham is one of those heading to Liverpool.
She said: “There is a real buzz in the gym at the minute. We can’t wait to get there and show what we can do.
“TeamGym is a bit louder than normal gymnastics because the crowd clap and cheer you as you go down the tumble run and there is music playing all the time.
“It’s great meeting other gymnasts, making new friends and watching some brilliant tumbling.”
Anybody interested in finding out more about Tyneside Gymnastics should contact head coach Lynsey White at Tyneside Gymnastics, c/o Tyne Met College, Queen Alexandra Campus, Hawkeys Lane, North Shields NE29 9BZ.