Camden Brothers, 9, spends about four and-a-half hours per day, six days a week at the gym. But she’s not running on the treadmill or lifting weights; Rather, she’s advancing her skills on the vault, bars, mat and beam.
Although her two older brothers have played soccer, basketball and baseball, she’s shown no interest in those traditional team sports. However, when her best friend invited her to a gymnastics class, Brothers found her calling.
“I would be at the gym seven days a week if I could,” teh Clover girl said. “If I’m not at the gym I’m doing gymnastics at home and coaching my three siblings on floor, beam, vault and bars.”
Brothers started taking gymnastics in 2014 and one year later began competing in compulsory at level two. In compulsory gymnastics, every child must learn a specific routine for each event.
In early December, she competed in the North Carolina Compulsory State Championship in Hickory, N.C., placing first on vault, first on bars, first on floor, tying for second on beam and placing first all-around level four.
“Camden is the level four North Carolina compulsory state champion,” her mother, Dana Brothers, proudly pointed out.
Because gymnastics is very demanding sport, especially for a child who is only 9 years old, Dana homeschools her daughter to provide a more flexible schedule for her to pursue her passion.
“When you see how much love your child has for the sport, you know it’s the right thing,” Dana said. “The gym is her second home. It’s where all her friends are and her coaches, and what she loves to do.”
Camden’s next competition is in January at the Sand Dollar Invitational at Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, Fla. She will compete at level five to score out and move on to levels six and seven.
She’s looking forward to leveling out, moving on to the next level and learning new skills.
“After a win, it makes me feel good,” Camden said. “I feel a sense of accomplishment that all my training was worth it. Getting those medals and standing on the podium is a great feeling.”
Stephanie Jadrnicek: firstname.lastname@example.org