STATING THEIR CASE: All smiles for the gymnasts at Ballina RSL Youth Club where the athletes are preparing for the FNC Regional Gymnastics Championships.
STATING THEIR CASE: All smiles for the gymnasts at Ballina RSL Youth Club where the athletes are preparing for the FNC Regional Gymnastics Championships. Stuart Turner

Ready to tumble

HOLLYWOOD inspiration prompted Claudia Weston to take up gymnastics - and she has not looked back since.

The Skennars Head-based gymnast is currently preparing alongside her Ballina RSL Youth Club squad mates for this Saturday's FNC Regional Gymnastics Championships.

Weston, 14, took up the sport about six years ago after watching a film documenting the life of Romanian Olympic great Nadia Comaneci.

After seeing the story of the five-time gold medallist, who was the first female gymnast to score a perfect 10 at the Olympics, Weston was hooked.

"I just watched Nadia and thought it would be good to be like her," she said. "My Mum signed me up and I've been coming ever since.

"I think I just have a passion for it now. I like competing and it is a fun sport.

"I love it."

Talented young gymnasts from clubs across the region will be in action at the event.

Competitors of all abilities will perform routines.

Weston, who attends Skennars Head's Xavier Catholic College, now helps coach her club's younger members as well as training herself.

"I love being part of this club," she said. "There are really good coaches and equipment here.

"I like trying to get better and better as well.

"I love the bars, that is my favourite. The others are pretty tough.

"I'm really excited for the competition. We've been training hard and I am looking forward to it."

Good performances at the competition could secure gymnasts spots at the state titles.

Club head coach Kim Herwig said she was looking forward to seeing how her charges performed at the event.

"I would love to see as many of our gymnasts as possible go to state," she said.

"They are a lovely bunch of kids. They work really hard.

"I just get immense pride from watching the kids. I love seeing them come here, come out of their shells and get more confidence as they get better.

"I am really proud of them."

Action at the Piper Drive club will start about 8am.



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