KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The pressure is on for young athletes competing in this year’s U.S. Gymnastic’s Championships.
“This is an exciting time,” Alec Yoder said, a senior competitor. “All the people who are training for the Olympic games are all right here competing for a spot on the national team and then hopefully a spot on the world team.”
Yoder is among 120 other gymnasts who have been ranked best in the nation.
“It’s humbling,” Yoder said smiling. “It shows that your hard work pays off. A lot of these guys are really close friends of mine and so it’s always cool to get up there and compete together.”
Also in the mix, are athletes hoping for another shot at winning title.
“I’ve competed in three world championships,” Donnell Whittemberg said, another senior competitor. “This is my first year back.”
Whittemburg broke his shoulder and went through rehab, making this his first competition in two years.
“You just have to strive for what you want,” he said. “No matter how difficult things get you have to keep pushing and if you want it bad enough, you’ll get it regardless.”
The competitions start August 8 and ends on Aug. 11. Both junior and senior men will compete for national titles, in hopes to move on to the Olympics.