NORMAN, Okla. -- As the OU women's gymnastics squad trains for the 2008 season, Sooner sophomore Hollie Vise will check in periodically with SoonerSports.com to shed light on how the team spends their offseason.
Vise, the 2003 World Champion on bars, leads a hungry OU squad that is eager to build on last season's record-setting performance as the Sooners posted the best finish in school history.
In this installment, Vise brings fans up to speed on how the team has spent the first month of practice on and off the mats.
Oct. 23, 2007
Hey Sooner fans, I'm back to let everyone know what's going on with the OU gymnastics team. We are through about a month of official practices and are well on our way to being ready for season! Preseason has been a lot of fun so far. We have been working hard and everyone is looking great. The progressions we have made in the past month are amazing.
Every week, a gymnast is chosen to pick a word that represents what we are striving for or can help us achieve our goals as a team. It's always a good motivational way to start off the week in the gym.
We have stayed busy outside of the gym with a lot of community service and team building activities recently as well. We have gone to the Ronald McDonald House to help paint a house that is occupied by sick children in between hospital visits, which was very rewarding. It was a lot of fun... though Nat (Ratcliff) and I were continuously criticized for our painting abilities, even though I think we did pretty good job! Coach Kindler thought otherwise and insisted on going over every part that we did.
We also made a banner that was sent to China for the USA gymnastics squad to carry in for the Special Olympics ceremony.
Last Saturday, the Race for the Cure was held in Oklahoma City and our whole team went and volunteered with the children's dash with the exception of Jackie (Flanery) and Gina (Lesko), who actually ran the three mile race. It was a fun experience and we were all glad to be a part of it.
On Sunday, we took a break from the gym to travel to a campsite for a team retreat. We did a lot of team buildings activities such as rope courses that made us depend on each other and showed the advantages of having other people behind you. We also did riflery and archery. I was pretty uncoordinated at the archery but I was a pretty good shooter. I think Nat or Haley (DeProspero) had the best score.
We then went and relaxed by the pool while Mary (Mantle) and Candace (Cindell) gave us a diving show. Mary stunned us with an exquisite double front that she was peer pressured into doing but she was very successful.
After being there for about five hours, it was time to head home. It was a lot of fun and we are already planning our next trip back. We all voted that next time we are playing paintball. Haha... should be fun!
This coming Sunday we will be having our Halloween Intrasquad. Look for a report on that in my next journal.
I hope you enjoyed hearing the latest about the Sooner Gymnasts.
Until next time,
Happy Halloween and BOOMER SOONER!