One of the leading trampoline academies’ in the country, Northamptonshire Trampoline Gymnastics Academy, has secured space to deliver a brand new gymnastics programme.
The academy has refurbished a former vacant area - on the same site at Benham Sports Centre on Moulton Park Industrial Estate - which will be home to brand new state-of-art gymnastics apparatus to benefit people of all ages and abilities.
Harvey Smith, Northamptonshire Trampoline Gymnastics Academy (NTGA) performance director, said: “We are very excited to have this opportunity to expand NTGA in what feels like a very natural progression into gymnastics.
"It is something we have been considering for some time as the academy has grown to capacity in recent years and the demand continues to rise with an ever-increasing waiting list.
"We currently have around 1,000 members enjoying trampolining every week with recreational, competitive, pre-school and disability programmes and with the demand for further opportunities it is definitely the right time to expand."
The academy is well renowned nationally and internationally for producing high level trampoline athletes, including Sydney 2000 Olympian Jaime Halsey, from St James, and Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Silver medallist Andrew Stamp. But the new venture will focus on providing opportunities for grass roots participation in gymnastics, six days a week.
He added: "The results at the last two Olympic Games have really propelled the sport to the forefront and we’ve witnessed a massive spike in interest for trampoline alone, so to be able to provide more access to this amazing sport with the extra disciplines on offer is fantastic.
"We are very passionate about what we do at NTGA and our ethos will be the same as we move forward; providing a gold standard service and the opportunity for people of all ages and abilities to enjoy gymnastics, encouraging them to be the best that they can be whilst having fun and making friends.”
According to British Gymnastics there are one million people currently on gymnastics waiting lists nationally and the academy will offer a ‘Gymnastics for All’ programme, focusing on participation at fundamental levels while also providing 'improvers squads' for those wanting to progress.
Natalie Laws, British Gymnastics business support officer said: “Participation in gymnastics is increasing rapidly. Growth of British Gymnastics membership has been higher than 12 per cent each year since 2012 and in Northamptonshire we have 15 clubs with a total membership of 5,474, this has increased from 1,264 in 2012.
"This opportunity to offer gymnastics in a dedicated space will allow the club to deliver an excellent service to their existing members and develop their offer to more of the local community and it is something we fully support.”
Northamptonshire Trampoline Gymnastics Academy is a non-profit organisation and with the total project cost exceeding £50,000, the academy were recipients of a £10,000 Sport England grant which helped to bring programme to life.
The academy will begin delivering a full programme of child-friendly gymnastics classes to all members of the community from 13 May.