Charlestown gymnast off to Geelong nationals

12-year-old gymnast Tahlie Park, of Charlestown.

12-year-old gymnast Tahlie Park, of Charlestown.

12-year-old gymnast Tahlie Park, of Charlestown.

12-year-old gymnast Tahlie Park, of Charlestown.

CHARLESTOWN gymnast Tahlie Park mastered the somersault as a toddler.

Then her mother, Renae, enrolled Tahlie in KinderGym when she was three.

A year later Tahlie joined Blackert Gymnastics Academy at Gateshead.

Now 12 years old, Tahlie is a state champion and is going for gold at nationals.

At level six, she is the academy's only student to have climbed ranks from one to six consecutively.

Tahlie was placed in the academy's National Development Program when she was six and has qualified for state championships every year since.

In 2012, she took out the NSW Gymnastics Championships held in Sydney, where she placed first in vault, second in floor routine and third in the beam and bar events.

This year, she placed third in the level six state championships in March.

The placing has not bothered Tahlie, who says her favourite event is vault.

"It's pretty fun trying to fly through the air," she said.

"Plus, I'm a natural."

Yet the bubbly tween has paid the price for it.

Tahlie fractured her wrist earlier this month, and will be in an arm cast for six weeks.

However, she hopes to be back on her feet in no time and ready to compete at nationals in Geelong in November.

It is the third year Tahlie has qualified for nationals since she made level four - the stage gymnasts must reach to compete nationally.

Tahlie said she was excited to represent the academy and do her home town proud once more.

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