There’s no mistaking how much Kara is enjoying her gymnastics at the moment.
It started out two years ago as an hour every Saturday morning. Now, as part of her gym’s development squad, it’s 9½ hours across three sessions a week. If she’s eventually promoted to the full squad, the time commitment will increase still further.
And yet she is not only coping with all the hard training, she’s positively thriving. Gymnastics plays well with her determined, competitive personality. She moved up a level at the start of this term and in even a few short weeks she has come on in leaps and bounds. Literally.
You would think that, on a Friday evening going into the half-term break, she would be tired after three hours of training. But no. I picked her up at 8pm and she was full of energy. When we arrived home she sprinted inside, performed a couple of cartwheels for fun and then promptly started practising various moves while waiting for dinner, all while giving me a non-stop commentary about her day. Then she did ten quick press-ups with astonishing ease. I’m not sure why – probably simply because she could.
There’s no stopping her. I don’t know how she does it; just watching her tires me out.
But that’s Kara for you. She has more energy than the rest of us put together. Gym has been fantastic for her confidence – a commodity she wasn’t exactly short of to begin with! – not to mention her strength and poise.
And so she was happy to strike a variety of dramatic, flourishing poses for me. Gracefulness and precision come as naturally to her as awkward and clumsy shuffling come to me. Suffice to say that my own gymnastics ability was always … limited. If Kara is a budding Beth Tweddle, then I was always more plain Twaddle. I still am. Thankfully she didn’t inherit that particular gene from me!
Ah well. Anyhow, gymnastics is a huge commitment of time for her that means she has had to give up other activities. But as long as she continues to be so enthusiastic about it, long may it continue.