THE countdown is on to a huge event for a group of Rotherham gymnasts this summer.
Rotherham Sports Acro will be representing Great Britain at the World Gymnaestrada in Dornbirn, Austria, in July.
World Gymnaestrada is the largest global gymnastics festival and this year over 23,000 individuals from a record breaking 60 countries will join forces to take part in the week-long, non-competitive festival.
A total of 800 British gymnasts will be involved, the largest team taken to date and nearly double the number who participated in Helsinki at the last Gymnaestrada in 2015.
Rotherham Sports Acro Club recently collected their team kit at the national rehearsal day in Nottingham, where Great Britain's delegation came together for the final time before they travel to the event.
The club's coach, Alison Proctor, said: “The excitement is really starting to build. It's been a long time since we signed up for Gymnaestrada and after receiving our team kit, the kids are buzzing!
“We're looking forward to seeing what other countries bring to display gymnastics. It's the biggest gymnastics event that we're going to be a part of and I hope the children can create a lot of memories in their time there.”
The event takes place every four years and is a fantastic opportunity for the world gymnastics community to unite and celebrate their sport.
The Great Britain team will include gymnasts from 30 British Gymnastics affiliated clubs, with participants ranging from six years old to adults in their 60s.
Olympic bronze medallist Amy Tinkler joined the rehearsals to share her experiences of competing for Great Britain and show her support for the teams.
She said: “Competing for your country is a huge honour and every gymnast should be so proud of themselves for achieving such recognition. Watching the rehearsals was amazing, the performances all looked incredible and the commitment and passion of the gymnasts and coaches is clear to see. I know everyone will do Great Britain proud and hope everyone has a memorable Gymnaestrada experience!”
She was joined by British Gymnastics CEO Jane Allen, who delivered a speech to wish the kids luck.
The World Gymnaestrada runs between July 7 and 13, the same month as the British Gymnastics Championship Series at the M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool (July 25-28).
Tickets can be purchased from the M&S Bank Arena website.