I started doing gymnastics when I was about 6 years old. I was never particularly good at it, but I loved it. I did it through my sophomore year in high school, at which point I simply did not have time to spend 20 hours a week in the gym. However, I was not really ready to quit. Gymnastics taught me so much, including leadership, perseverance, risk-taking, and self-discipline. However, it also taught me one of the most important life lessons: to believe in myself. This is an easy thing to do when you are good at something and it is much easier to believe in yourself when other people believe in you too. But it is exceptionally difficult when you are not good at it and even your parents don't believe in you. But I was not willing to give up, and stuck with gymnastics for those 10 years. (The picture is me in the middle of a back handspring, a skill that I had a particularly difficult time learning and very nearly had me quit gymnastics.) I am so glad I did, because I learned that invaluable lesson of believing in myself that I would not have learned as well from any of my other activities growing up. This has impacted so much of the rest of my life, including my desicion to become an engineer - I was not sure I could do it, but have decided to believe in myself and I will make it!
When I came to Stanford, I was thrilled to discover I could take an Intermediate Gymnastics PE class (which I have taken every quarter). It is exciting to be able to re-learn some skills I used to be able to do, but also to learn new things! I now also coach little girls' gymnastics, passing on the inspiration from my own coaches.
The videos below show me doing:
- Round-off back handspring back layout (the hardest tubmling pass I could do before I quit in high school)
- Aerial - no-handed cartwheel, a skill I struggled with in high school
- Front layout with a full twist - hardest new skill I have learned in college
- Double front tuck - two flips in the air! Also learned here in college