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Adults turn to gymnastics for workout

August 18, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
This month, millions of us have watched the American men's and women's gymnastics teams compete in the Olympics. If you've ever wished you could do some of those back flips, now may be as good a time as ever to try. By day, 34-year-old Guinevere Brightwell is a stay-at-home mom caring for her two daughters. But by night, Guinevere and her husband Ty stretch, jump, pull, roll and flip for fun.

Gymnastics is something the couple took up just six months ago.

"I guess we started to feel old after we had kids, and now, we feel more vibrant and youthful," said Guinevere.

"I watched gymnastics, or the Olympics, and you can't help but wish you could do that," Ty.

They're part of a growing trend -- learning gymnastics as an adult.

Colin Ligammari, a gymnastics instructor for Chelle Stack's Gymnastics, says if you're in good health, you can learn gymnastics at almost any age.

"This is something for everybody. Everybody could use better core strength. It's an all-around perfect workout," said Ligammari.

Gymnastics moves require all the muscles in the body to work in unison, so you work every part.

Twenty-seven-year-old Damian Pichardo says it's a challenging workout.

"It's a good way to get your daily life stresses out and to keep in shape," said Pichardo.

But with adults, injuries are a concern. Ligammari says you should always stretch first, and never do a move that feels uncomfortable. Also, being in shape is the best injury prevention.

Thirty-year-old Keith Noone has been training for four years and hasn't suffered a single injury.

"When you first start out, it's a little bit scary, but you get a few things down and it gets a little less scary," said Noone.

And they get a little better. Before starting the class, none of the participants could do the moves. They may never win the gold, but these adults are proof anyone can be a gymnast.


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