I'm pretty new to being a member on chalkbucket, but have been lurking for a while!! One thing that i have noticed is the lack of threads on Sports Acrobatics, i dont know whether this is purely because theres not many acrobatic gymnasts on here, or if you just skim the subject and join in with artistic threads(which i have been doing!) My name is Charlotte, and i have been doing gymnastics on and off for as long as i can remember, from when i was about 4 i did gymnastics, but it was a general club, not artistic, or acro, just beginner, forward rolls, cartwheels etc. Even though i loved the sport, i just got bored, and at the time there were no other clubs anywhere near me, throughout primary school i continued to play about with gymnastics in my house, and attended a few general clubs, at school, which always ended up shutting down for some reason. Then, when i was about 13, an artistic club opened up a few miles away from my house, i was so happy! I was there for a couple of years, just as a rec, and a 'hobby squad' gymnast, my Mom hated it, it seemed like because i wasnt naturally talented, and because i was a beginner, with not much experience, i was treated like dirt.I was'nt improving, and ended up just teaching myself most training sessions, nobody seemed to have passion for the sport like i did, i was the only one in leo's, with my hair tied up, they all just came in sweatpants and hoodies, with their hair loose! Even with all of the above factors, i continued, because i loved the sport, We never worked on floor, just messed about in the pits! I loved beam, and vault, just could never go on them because it was a 'hobby squad' it seemed like it was purley for a laugh. Obviously, paying Â£4 an hour, my mom was very angry, and had spoken to the coaches numerous times about other options, but because i was the only 13 year old beginner, they didnt want me to do rec with the 4 and 5 year olds! but i wasnt talented enough for a squad( for obvious reasons). After a couple of years i decided that i'd have enough, i found an acrobatic club about 30 minutes away, i trained as hard as i could with no coaches and managed to get myself into a squad! i was over the moon! for a few months i was on cloud nine, but this club soon became a lot like the last, nobody took it seriously, turning up in jeans to train in, and the coaches allowed it! Again, i was determined to carry on, and i did. Although i had never done back handsprings in my life, and one of the coaches spotted me once,( i am a very tall gymnast, which in my opinion made it scarier) and dropped me, from then on he refused to spot me! i was with that club for two years, trying to make the most of it, i had a regular partnership in a pair, and we always tried to work our hardest, but it was difficult with a 2 hour acrobatic squad session, not even doing acro most of the time, the coaches just saying "oh go on the trampolines". About 4 months ago there was a glimpse of hope, Two top coaches(formally at the old gym) decided that they'd had enough aswell, so were going to open up their own gym about 30 minutes from me! This gym had been my savior, and i have learned so much in these 4 months! Now 16 years old, i still cannot do a back handspring, but you know what, i dont mind! because i know that i am trying my best, and my coaches are willing to support me! i train 3 nights a week, in the acrobatic squad, with my first competition early febuary! Looking back, of course i wish i'd have done artistic gymnastics, but it just wasnt possible! i even wish i started acro at a young age, so i could have been a top! At the end of the day, just put your all into it, you dont have to be a natural gymnast, and even if you still cant do a skill after years of trying, just have fun! have passion!!