Hawaiian backdrop is ideal for Arabian

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The girls from Arabian Gymnastics meant business despite their surroundings as they competed in Hawaii earlier this month.

The 14,000 mile trip was a first for English gymnasts to compete in Hawaii and they did themselves and the club by out classing many gymnasts from USA, Canada and Australian in a heat of 65 competitors.

The biggest difficulty the English girls had was trying to adapt to the USA rules which are completely different to optional routines in the UK.

So for the girls, all just 14-years-old, to beat gymnasts who more familiar with the rules was very pleasing for them and head coach Alan Armitage.

The girls stayed in Honolulu but had to travel 45 minutes through the mountains to the east of the island and trained in some amazing settings, with lush green mountains on one side of the facility and diamond blue seas on the other.

“It was like training in heaven, they had a smile on their faces the whole ten days they were there,” said Alan.

The girls however were more solemn when visiting Pearl Harbour to show their respects to the famously fallen that initiated the USA into World War 2.

Kyla Howton was the clubs highest overall gymnast in 4th place with 3rd on vault, 8th on bars, 5th beam and 9th floor. Performing new moves on bars and floor for the first time saw an impressive display from the flamboyant and artistic flared gymnast.

Sophie Fretwell was 6th overall hot on the heels of her team mate winning an additional bronze medal for her slick acrobatic bars routine, 6th on vault, 10th on beam and 13th on floor.

Tionne Cumberbatch was just 0.50 behind Sophie but had to settle for an impressive 7th place overall with vault 7th, bars 10th, beam 7th and floor she proved to be our highest placed gymnast in 8th .

Poppy Gibbs was 11th overall and came 15th on vault, 14th on floor, 13th on bars and impressive balance beam routine gave her 8th place.

All girls gained additional medals for places achieved as well as a unique overall placing prize made of sea shells collected from the islands.

Alan added: “Its an awfully long way to travel but I include myself and coaches Donna and Sam who were on this trip when I state, we just trained and competed in possibly the most heavenly place on the planet.

“The place just took your breathe away, as did the attitude and professional manner the gymnasts had in representing their club country.

“There was a lot of sadness for eldest gymnast Bex Whatmore who was injured and unable to take part, but still supported her team mates brilliantly.

“I am immensely proud to coach these athletes”