KAATS Gymnastics: Pushing past the pandemic

Garrett Short
Updated: April 15, 2021 05:47 PM
Created: April 14, 2021 07:51 PM

(ABC 6 News) - Despite two shutdowns enforced by the state, 14 of 14 gymnasts for KAATS Gymnastics in Pine Island have qualified to compete at Regionals this weekend in Iowa.

Athletics have been difficult this past year because of the pandemic, but KAATS has been able to persevere.

"Their dedication, devotion and determination through this whole process, they have overcome more than I ever expected that they would do with 120 days off out of the gym," KAATS owner and coach Kathy Nelson said.

Unlike sports like basketball or soccer where simple equipment in an open space is all that is needed, gymnasts at KAATS couldn't practice their regular routines at home. High bars, balance beams and vaults aren't a common thing outside of a gymnastics gym.

"It's definitely tested my devotion, my determination, my motivation for gymnastics," gymnast Brianna Ryan said.

The time away from the gym could be seen as a blessing in disguise according to the athletes. It gave their bodies time to heal and also gave them a new love for the sport after being away from it for so long.

Their passion when they returned to practice has led to success. 14 of 14 gymnasts are taking part in the regionals competition in Iowa this weekend, giving them a chance to face off with the best athletes from Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota and South Dakota.

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