WAG Please Read: starting Gymnastics as an 18 year old beginner

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Jul 25, 2016
Hi everyone. I'm new to this forum and I just want to ask a few questions concerning gymnastics.
Before I go on I just want to give a bit of a back story (please bare with me).
So since a very young age about 6/7 I've wanted to do gymnastics. I'm a naturally flexible person, not as flexible as as i used to be but I can easily regain the flexibility. I've also taught my self how to do the splits, back kick over, handstands, cartwheel, front flip (even in rollerblade, not that safe I know) round offs and a front/ backhand spring. I learned all these by myself and I was quite young. I kept this up until I was 14/15.
Now, the reason why I had no one to teach me all these tricks was because my mom wouldn't let me do gymnastics. My only true gymnastics experience was once in primary school and once in secondary school and both were basic programmes that had a duration of a few weeks. I knew I had some potential in this sport and I would try again and again and again to convince my mum but she refused. I even made a PowerPoint presentation and she disregarded it. The gymnastics club wasn't even far from my house and money wasn't a problem. I was so disappointed because I knew if I worked hard enough I would have been a competitive gymnasts, not an elite gymnast but still a competitive one.
Now that I've moved to the UK and have turned 18 I don't have to rely on my mum to drive or ask for permission for classes or clubs. So, I'm taken the leap to join an adult gymnastics club, something I've wanted for as long as I can remember.
My issues is will I ever reach the level to at least compete in an adult competitions or is it too late for that. How long do I have to train in order to keep upgrading to a new level.
Please help because I've wanted to do this for such a long time and I wish my mum wasn't so adamant about something I was and still am so passionate about


Numpty Watcher
Proud Parent
Aug 28, 2011
being 18 doesn't mean you have to compete as an adult. We have 18 year olds that compete in our county competitions in the "open" age group ( usually 15 +) It all depends on your club. Bear in mind that for anything other than rec or F&V competitions these girls will have years of gymnastics training so catching up the skills may take a whilst, and more than a couple of hours a week in an adult class. Also adult classes tend to be a lot more unstructured and about acquiring skills rather than good form, so whilst you may be able to do the skills, they are not competition ready. That being said, go for it, what have you got to loose.


Mar 18, 2016
I don't know exactly how the system works in the UK, but I do know in general that adult gymnastics is usually less focused on competitions. I would ask at your gymnastics club what sort of opportunities there are for you to compete as an adult, and what skill or level requirements there are before you can do that.

As far as how soon you'll progress, that depends on a number of factors such as what the required level/skills are to compete, where you're at now with your skills, how much time you have to practice, how well your coaches work with you, your own body and mental state, if you happen to be injured, etc. I would only say make sure you don't expect to regain the skills you had at 14/15 too quickly. Your body has changed since then so your weight distribution, center of gravity, strength, and flexibility have changed as well. Doesn't mean you won't be able to learn things again, only that it may feel different than before! Especially since you might be learning them differently now in a gym club, versus before on your own.


Nov 16, 2012
I just say go for it!

At my first gymnastics club there was 3 girls who always wanted to do gymnastics as children but they didn't get involved it until they were 16 or 17. Actually they first started coaching rec classes and after that they got so excited that they asked if they could practice with the team girls. The club said yes (they are not focused on winning at competition etc, they just want to offer everyone an opportunity to learn and even compete) and the girls started to train themselves and they also kept coaching rec classes. The girls were so determinate that I truly admired their hard work. They practiced with kids almost 10 years younger but they didn't mind. They conditioned like crazy and now they have went from forward rolls to front tucks and from pull overs to even kips and clear hip circles! They even starter competing for fun as 17 and 18 year olds! Our system in Finland allows it. Actually there is one 42 year old woman who also competes regularly. It's not against any rules even if some people think it's odd. I guess she has Asperger or something like that and I have nothing against her competing. It's not like she's taking the medals away from the kids, she just does it for fun. I think she's not hurting anyone and if this is something she wants to do and what makes her happy then why not.


Proud Parent
Aug 17, 2011
Adult comps in the uk have several
Levels- from complete beginner, to ex-gymnast. so you'll be fine :)

Find a club, train, and enter a comp. where in london are you? From facebook info east london and Europa both train and compete adult level. Greenwich royals, bromley, croydon all have adult classes, but no idea if they compete regularly.
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