SOUTHPORT, Fla. (WMBB) — The Edgewater Gymnastics Academy is celebrating National Gymnastics Day, which is the third Saturday in September.
“Gymnastics is one of the most amazing sports in the world,” Edgewater Gymnastics head coach Anna Rodriguez said. “It doesn’t just teach the kids how to flip. They take these lessons with them for the rest of their lives.”
The holiday celebrates a sport that often goes unrecognized.
“It’s nice to have a day where our athletes feel recognized because they work hard even when nobody is looking,” Edgewater Gymnastics Academy coach Mary Beth Akins said.
This is a sport that doesn’t happen during the week at the athlete’s schools, so the holiday is important to them.
“As a high schooler, I go to school every single day and I hear all about like football games and all the points, the scores,” Edgewater gymnast Madelyn Kimball. “You go to school and you see the glass filled with all these trophies, but you never have the sports out of school like gymnastics.”
National Gymnastics Day is all about celebrating the sport these athletes love.
“My favorite part about gymnastics is just coming here and spending time with my teammates,” Edgewater gymnast Emily Shepard said.
The athletes spend countless hours in the gym year-round, working hard to perfect their craft.
“There really isn’t an off time,” Rodriguez said. “These kids are in the gym five days a week. They’re so dedicated. They love what they do and they have so much support for each other.”
If you know anything about Edgewater Gymnastics Academy, it’s all about celebrating and empowering the athletes.
“Here at Edgewater, we’re known for our celebrations and supporting each other,” Akins said. “So it’s nice to have that from the outside as well.”
The Edgewater gymnasts are coming off another top season, where they won their fifth straight state championship.
The season begins next month with the annual Panama City Beach Cup at the Edgewater Beach Resort. In December, the gym is going to its first meet in the Bahamas.