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”
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”
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.
4. Stretching = Show off
If you stretch at a normal gym, people think you’re trying to show off.
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.”
6. People always ask you if you’ve seen “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.
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.
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.
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.
11. You watch gymnastics on TV religiously
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.
13. You still shave your legs in the winter…
Simply because you’ve never not done that.
14. You still point your toes
You often find yourself pointing your toes without realizing it.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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).
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.
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.
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.
25. You feel very confused about crushed velvet being used in normal clothes.
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”).
27. You can’t imagine ever buying a blue blazer.
28. You really miss your calluses.
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
Disclaimer: This post may make you miss Gymnastics so much or even make you cry. Do you have something to add on the list?