29 Signs You Know You’re an “Ex-Gymnast”

gymnastics flexibility

Once upon a time, you were a highly competitive gymnast. It was your life. You might not have even been that good in gymnast terms, but in other people terms, you were amazing (because you said yes when they asked “can you do a flip?”). You worked out more days a week than you went to school.

Now you feel really lame when people talk about what they did in high school because your answer is always the same: “well, I spent time at the gym…” If you are a no-longer-competing, still-identifying-as-one-even-though-you-definitely-aren’t gymnast, you can probably relate to the following statements:

1. The “Flip”

flip

When you tell people you used to do gymnastics, they immediately ask you if you can do a flip and you start asking them if they mean a back tuck or a back walkover or a back handspring and they look at you like you’re crazy because they just want to know if you can do a “flip.”

2. The “Injury”

gymnastics-broken-bone

You have a lot of x-rays that look like this.

You tell people you had to stop because you got hurt, and they get all concerned about your injury, and you remember that in the real world having really serious injuries isn’t a normal thing.

3. You Sit Weirdly

You sit on the floor in really weird positions that most people can’t even do. And you don’t even realize it.

gymnastics-doing-homework

“Wait, most people don’t sit on the floor like this to do homework? Huh. Weird.”

4. Stretching = Show off

If you stretch at a normal gym, people think you’re trying to show off.

gymnastics flexibility

You’re used to this, so doing a split as part of stretching is nothing. Your hips aren’t square and your knees are a little bent – why do they think this is good?

5. People Accuse Your Coaches as Abusive

When you tell people how your coaches treated you, they usually say something like, “isn’t that child abuse?” and you say, “no, that’s gymnastics.”

You probably didn’t realize all coaches weren’t like that.

You probably didn’t realize all coaches weren’t like that.

6. People always ask you if you’ve seen “Stick It”

gymnastics-stick-it

It’s the only movie about gymnastics. Of course you’ve seen it. (But if one more person says, “my favorite quote is ‘it isn’t gym-nice-tics,’ you might shoot them).

7. You still have most of your leotards. Just in case.

gymnastics-leos

There was a 30-year-old who competed in the Olympics for Germany in 2008. That could be you! You’re just keeping your options open.

8. People just don’t understand.

You’re pretty sure every coach ever has tried to claim this quote as their own.

If someone tries to compare gymnastics to the sport they did, you know that they really just don’t understand.

9. You think about this at least once

Despite how much you hated it sometimes, if you have a daughter, she will definitely do gymnastics. At least for a little bit.

Because this is actually the cutest thing imaginable.

Because this is actually the cutest thing imaginable.

10. You get nostalgic for “the good old days”

You think about how fit you used to be and get nostalgic for the good old days. And then you continue sitting on the couch.

What feels like forever ago, your abs looked like this.

What feels like forever ago, your abs looked like this.

11. You watch gymnastics on TV religiously

This is you.

This is you.

12. Cheerleading isn’t like Gymnastics

When someone tells you cheerleading is like gymnastics, you question why you’re talking to this person at all.

cheerleading

13. You still shave your legs in the winter…

Simply because you’ve never not done that.

gymnastics-venus-embrace

Plus, USAG sent you enough of these to last you well into your eighties, so you might as well.

14. You still point your toes

You often find yourself pointing your toes without realizing it.

gymnastics-pointed-toes

15. You keep up on the careers of your teammates

You keep up on the careers of your teammates who made it big and talk about them at any appropriate (or inappropriate) occasion.

 

Because how many of your friends get to do this in front of audiences of thousands?

Because how many of your friends get to do this in front of audiences of thousands?

16. You still have the urge of doing floor routine

Sometimes a song will come on the radio and you will immediately start doing the floor routine of a friend.

But then you remember it isn’t acceptable to do this in the middle of the mall, so you stop.

But then you remember it isn’t acceptable to do this in the middle of the mall, so you stop.

17. YouTube videos save your a lot of your times.

When you try to explain a skill to a non-gymnast friend, they stare blankly at you until you end up pulling out your computer to find it on YouTube, because it’s just too impossible to describe.

They all have names like Tkachev and Yurchenko and Shaposhnikova anyways, so it isn’t like anyone except you is going to understand anyways.

They all have names like Tkachev and Yurchenko and Shaposhnikova anyways, so it isn’t like anyone except you is going to understand anyways.

18. This is what happened when you watch gymnastics with other people

When you watch gymnastics with other people, they gasp at all the wrong moments of routines, and you get ridiculously frustrated.

This is NOT an acceptable time to freak out. This is the part of the routine where she is taking a break, for Christ’s sake.

This is NOT an acceptable time to freak out. This is the part of the routine where she is taking a break, for Christ’s sake.

19. You think about this when a new song come out.

Once in a while, a new song will come out and all you can think is how you wish you still did gymnastics because you would definitely want that as your floor music.

gymnastics-floor-music

20. You’re still Facebook friends with your coaches

You’re still Facebook friends with your coaches. And you think it’s super weird that they have lives outside of coaching.

This is all they’re supposed to do. They’re supposed to live at the gym.

This is all they’re supposed to do. They’re supposed to live at the gym.

21. You are not a big fan of Make It or Break It

When you watched Make It or Break It on ABC Family, you got so pissed at how easy all their routines were (I’m sorry, those were level 8 routines, not elite. Get your shit together ABC Family).

And let’s be real, no gymnast has that much time for boyfriend drama. That’s just not even possible.

And let’s be real, no gymnast has that much time for boyfriend drama. That’s just not even possible.

22. This is what you feel about gym nowadays.

If you go into a gym (the gymnastics kind, obviously), you feel like you just have to touch EVERYTHING.

But your gym was always ten thousand times better than any other gym.

But your gym was always ten thousand times better than any other gym.

23. When people say they don’t like chalk, you just cannot comprehend what they’re saying.

While normal people complain about the chalk on blackboards, you have to resist the urge to rub it all over your hands. And you know that all good conversations happened around the chalk bowl.

gymnastics-chalk-bowl

24. You remember exactly what your gym smelled like.

You remember exactly what your gym smelled like. Other people thought it smelled gross, but you thought it smelled like home.

Sometimes, you literally slept at the gym.

Sometimes, you literally slept at the gym.

25. You feel very confused about crushed velvet being used in normal clothes.

This is currently for sale at Forever 21. Now normal people are wearing leotard material and it freaks you out.

This is currently for sale at Forever 21. Now normal people are wearing leotard material and it freaks you out.

26. You may experience this

There are always those guys who say something completely unacceptable when you say you were a gymnast (they ask if you’ll do a split and when you do, they make it weird by muttering something under their breath, like “boner”).

gymnastics-those-guys

27. You can’t imagine ever buying a blue blazer.

Judges wear blue blazers. They’re the only ones allowed to do so.

28. You really miss your calluses.

You even kind of miss rips because they made you feel like a badass.

You even kind of miss rips because they made you feel like a badass.

Now any time you meet someone with calluses (perhaps someone who does crew or a construction worker or something), you feel very inclined to touch their hands.

29. You still feel an emotional attachment to your grips

They may be bloody and sweat-stained, but you know you’d be nothing without them.

They may be bloody and sweat-stained, but you know you’d be nothing without them.

Disclaimer: This post may make you miss Gymnastics so much or even make you cry. Do you have something to add on the list?

This post was written by Ileana (a member of BuzzFeed Community), it was first published originally on her blog here.