Gymnast Poppy beams with delight after latest successes

DIGGLE gymnast Poppy Blair has somersaulted her way into contention for a place in the British squad.

The 13-year-old, a member of the Tameside School of Gymnastics, has had an incredible start to 2022 finishing 18th at both the English and British Championships.

Poppy competed at the English at Redbridge, London, and the British at the M&S Bank Arena, Liverpool, in the all-around competition while she was also seventh in the individual on the beam at the English.

These performances have earned her an invitation to the British national squad selection camp in June.

Poppy Blair

Prior to this, Poppy was the national beam champion at elite grades aged 11 when she qualified for the British championships one month before the first lockdown and was placed 13th hat the British Espoir championships last November where she placed seventh on the beam.

Poppy started gymnastics aged three years old attending the recreation sessions at the Active Ken Ward, Hattersley, before moving into the Tameside School of Gymnastics at six.

She is classed as an elite junior gymnast and competes at the highest level for her age.

Poppy attends The Blue Coat Church of England School, Oldham, and with their support trains five days a week including Friday afternoons.

She is a dedicated gymnast who trains 20 hours a week in the gym to develop the skills required to compete at this level.

During the lockdowns she continued training attending zoom sessions and completing daily conditioning programmes.

Her three coaches Mike Lea, Vikki Bamber and Cerys Allen say she has worked so hard to achieve such excellent results and to be invited to attend the national squad testing is a huge achievement.

“She is a pleasure to coach and is a great role model to the rest of the club’s gymnasts,” they said.

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