Sevier student Laney Height “flips out” for gymnastics

EXTRA FLEXIBLE. Laney Height can perform flips with ease
thanks to her experience as a gymnast.

COURTESY OF JENNY HEIGHT

EXTRA FLEXIBLE. Laney Height can perform flips with ease thanks to her experience as a gymnast.

Jabbar Christian, Staff Writer

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Laney Height is a seventh grade student at John Sevier Middle School. She is also a gymnast who trains at “East Tennessee Cheer and Gymnastics”.

Height decided to become a gymnast because there was no other sport that she liked more than gymnastics.
“Nothing really specific attracted me to the sport,” she said. “I just loved flipping around.”

Although she competes in competitions, she does not believe that she has just one single great moment as a gymnast. Instead, learning new moves are her proudest moments.

“There are times when I’ve been working on a skill for a while or win a competition,” she said.
Since gymnastics can be a tough sport, Height also has had plenty of bad moments.

“Moments like these are when you finish a bad practice or everybody is in a bad mood,” she said. “It all affects your training.”

Height spends a lot of time training. She trains three hours and thirty minutes, five days per week. She has four different events that she has to practice.

“Most of my practices are focused on flexibility and conditioning,” she said.

Even diet can be an important part of being a gymnast.

“I don’t eat specific foods,” Height said. “My mom likes to cook and makes all sorts of food that is very healthy.”

To Height, the most difficult thing about gymnastics is not giving up and trying your best all the time.
“The most satisfying thing is when you finish a good routine or get a new skill,” she said.

Height has a good relationship with her coach.

“The coach that works with me most is very positive and always telling my team mates new stuff about gymnastics and is very funny,” she said.

She also feels the atmosphere on her team is very positive. All team members laugh and cheer each other on.

Height hopes to continue her involvement in gymnastics in the future. She wants to go to the University of Georgia and do gymnastics there.

Her parents are also a big influence on her gymnastics career.

“My parents are very proud of me because I give it all I’ve got, whether I’m in 1st place or not,” she said.

Three things Height believe are important traits of a great athlete are to stay healthy, do your best in everything you do, and have a positive attitude.

Height also has some advice for her fellow athletes.

“Never give up on yourself and don’t compare your skill to someone else,” she said.

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