Gym Talk: Freshman Lily Swann

Hello and welcome to the first edition of gym talk for 2007! I am Lily Swann and am starting my freshman year here on the San Jose State gymnastics team. Coming all the way from Austin, Texas, this is a huge change for me. Luckily for me I had a teammate move here with me, making the transition much easier. Also the girls already on the team and the other incoming freshman have been everything and more than I could have hoped for.

I knew that going into a new gym with different coaches, equipment, girls and expectations would be difficult, but I am already growing to love it. The girls are not only extremely nice, but also very accepting and helpful towards the new freshmen. The upperclassmen even go out of their way to make sure we have rides to wherever we’re going. The coaches are also being very understanding at how difficult this transition can be for us freshmen. There is a new coach to the team, Megan, who I have really enjoyed working with and think will be a great addition to our team. In addition to the gymnastics team, there is school: Managing school, work and gymnastics can be very difficult, which is why I am very glad that we have study hall as one of our resources. All athletes must go to study hall for 6 hours a week, which it is a great way to get your work done in a distraction-free environment.

A couple of weekends ago we went on a retreat to the lake with the team. We left Friday morning and arrived in the early evening after a quick lunch at Subway. When we arrived everyone went out on the lake to go wake boarding, boating, or kayaking. Later that night we had a dinner made by the seniors and had some team-bonding time. We played the question game where everyone had to write down two questions and then everyone drew out two random ones and answered it. This was a really fun and interesting way to get to know the girls. We also had a bunch of trivia that said something about one of the girls, and we had to decide who it was. I didn’t do great at this game, but at least I got to learn more about my teammates. Then after the games we all went to bed to get ready for the next day. Saturday morning the freshmen made a delicious breakfast of eggs, pancakes, fruit, and hash browns. Then the rest of the morning we just hung out for a bit and watched “She’s the Man”. Later on, when it got warmer, a couple of girls went out on the water. I kayaked with Jymmie to a big water trampoline where some other girls met up with us. Even though the water was freezing, it was really fun! When we got back from the trampoline we all enjoyed some wraps made by the juniors and did some more team-bonding activities. Before I knew it, dinner was here, where sophomores served us burgers (or veggie burgers), corn, and salad. After that, we ate a cake made to celebrate Tiffany’s 19th birthday! Then, we all got together and decided on some team goals for the season and watched a movie. The next morning we ate a quick breakfast and headed off for home. The trip as a whole was not only highly enjoyable, but I also felt like I got to know my teammates much better.

We’re all working really hard getting into the swing of things at the gym, but I feel like we’re all really enjoying it. I love the team spirit in every practice we’ve had. It not only makes the team feel more together, but also provides extra motivation in our skills. All together, despite the challenges of adjusting, I am thoroughly enjoying my time here on the San Jose State gymnastics team and feel like we’re having a great start to what will be an amazing year!