Now that 4 years have passed since the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, it’s time for another grand display of athletics, this time in Tokyo, Japan. Of the more than 30 sports to compete in at this year’s summer games, gymnastics stands out as one of the most expansive, and competitive.
For gymnasts, the Olympics are the zenith of their career, the place where years of hard work, dedication and talent lead to, and this year’s games in Tokyo are sure to bring a new generation of glory to the eyes of the entire world.
A Lifetime of Training
16-years-old is the average age of Olympic gymnast on the U.S. women’s team, so you can imagine how young training begins to become “Olympic-ready.” Most prospective Olympians start between the formative years of 2 and 5 years-old, which USA Gymnastics claims is the optimal age for gymnasts to learn how their bodies move prior to progressing into advanced classes.
From there, young gymnasts choose a gym along with a coach that will train them for the Talent Opportunity Program (TOP) to hopefully participate in the TOP’s testing and training camps. In order to pass through these rigorous programs, prospective Olympians should have exceptional talent and abilities by the age of 10.
Once a young gymnast meets these benchmarks and begins racking up success at competitions, they may catch the attention of national scouts — but even then, elite gymnasts still devote 20-30 hours a week to their craft.
For former Olympic gymnast and gold medalist Gabby Douglas, the intense training schedule is all too familiar. In order to get ready for the 2016 games, her schedule involved waking up at the crack of dawn to begin her 6.5-hour per day training regimen split between morning and afternoon sessions.
We Sell Mats Gets You Olympic-Ready
Gyms that are capable of training future Olympians don’t settle for just any equipment; they only work with the best. If you or your young Olympian is looking to work with pro-level equipment, then check out the selection of premium gymnastics mats designed for competitive training.
As for now, we can’t wait to see the hard work pay off for all of the dedicated gymnasts at the 2020 Summer Olympics and are proud to cheer on the upcoming U.S. Gymnastics National Teams in Tokyo.