TeamGB Homecoming Parades

These couple of days have been incredible! From news and chat shows in the Manchester BBC studios… to celebrating, on floats and stages in Manchester and London, the success and the support TeamGB have experienced regarding the Olympics… to meeting The Royal Family in Buckingham Palace… these are two days I will definitely never forget!

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MANCHESTER : BBC Studios & Victoria Derbyshire Olympic Special

It was a relatively early start, but we were all buzzing to be involved with the BBC breakfast shows. We arrived in their Manchester studios and were taken to the stairs, where we would settle for the cameras when on air, then between shows the volume levels would rises and we would catch up with everyone, some who we haven’t seen since the Games.

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Personally, I had an amazing time. I loved hearing what everyone had been up to and congratulating those who I hadn’t seen after their competition in the Olympics/Paralympics. It was interesting to hear what people were planning to do post-games as well – how many would continue competing and what adventures athletes who are retiring have chosen to pursue.

The Victoria Derbyshire Show was awesome too – getting to listen to other Olympians and fans talk about their memories of the Rio Olympics and sport in general. There was so much shared pride in the room, it felt very special. At times, some of the hockey girls showed their emotions and there were a few happy tears shed. There were a few tears shed watching Lutalo Muhammad’s emotional interview after his Taekwondo final fight. It was so heartbreaking hearing him say how devastated he was and thinking he had let everyone down. What was really special, was seeing how all the fans in the show showed their support, and the incredible cheering and positive reaction from the huge crowd when he stood on stage after the Parade. It just goes to show there is so much more to life and more to sport than winning. For me, his reaction after his final fight was so real and honest people couldn’t help but want to pick him back up, support him and say “you know what?..you have done us so proud whatever”!! Being there live to see this, to be part of this, really pulled my heart strings!

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MANCHESTER PARADE

Interview before the Parade

The morning sunshine had given us hope that it would be a sunny day, and I was feeling confident the sun would stay out….until that dreaded moment when an interviewer jinxed it by saying what a lovely day it was to have a parade! 😀 The moment we got onto the floats, it began to spit raindrops. We quickly put on our (extremely flattering) ponchos to save our GB kit from getting soaked and off we went, waving to the cheering crowds and reading all their messages on speech bubble cards. So many people turned up to show their support and we were so grateful of the response to our Olympics! I enjoyed waving to the crowds and spotting people watching from their office windows or on tops of roofs. At a few points when the crowd was close enough, I could lean out of the float and high-five down the line of people – which was pretty cool!

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Amy, Nathan, Me, Nile, Max, Kristian, Ellie, Becky

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Halfway through the parade, the rain just went crazy and starting chucking it down! We were getting drenched and wrinkly wet hands. But as Nathan (Bailey) said sincerely to me ‘This is perfect. It is so British!’ – I couldn’t agree more. The rain actually made the parade better! It was funny and I thought it became more real and interactive with the crowd. They were like oh no poor Olympians stuck on these floats getting completely soaked whilst we can hide inside – or they were joining us and committing to staying outside getting drenched – either way, I was laughing at the situation and felt the whole situation became less formal or at least more funny!

We left our floats and were introduced onto a stage in front of a HUGE crowd! Again, I was able to watch first-hand the audience celebrate various athletes successes and feel their pride of the whole team. I somehow managed to spot my parents too which resulted in some very enthusiastic waving and thumbs up from both parties 😀 Rebecca Ferguson sang Heroes by David Bowie, which I thought was perfect and as a David Bowie fan, found it emotional.

Following a bang of confetti, with our soggy socks and shoes, we squelched our way off the stage, away from the crowded streets and into an incredible building for a reception where Theresa May & Seb Coe, among others, would give speeches celebrating TeamGB’s success at the Rio Olympics and the support we have received from the Nation.

We then danced the night away.

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LONDON CELEBRATIONS

Another early start, we travelled to London via a Charter Train completely filled with Olympians and their Olympic coaches or support staff. There were even double decker buses inside the train station for us to transfer to Trafalgar Square. Our bus driver was Mo Farrah’s doppelganger – was so cool!

The Trafalgar Square celebrations on stage were, again, fantastic. They spoke with some of the Olympians on stage about their experiences of Rio, with Katherine Grainger (Rowing) and Dina Asher-Smith (4x100m relay) holding back the tears as they got emotional with joy remembering back to what their Olympic Medal Moments meant to them. I really felt their happiness and began to feel emotional as my eyes filled with tears too. The organisers celebrated women in sport by showing the audience a video clip of of female Olympic medal winners; when I heard my name announced through the loud speakers, along with commentary from my Olympic Final, I couldn’t hold back tears streaming down my face as it sunk in that little bit for the first time since the Games that I actually achieved my dream of becoming an Olympian, representing my country at an Olympic Games, and coming home with an Olympic Medal. It’s so much to process! Nathan and Amy were sat next to me and Nathan gave me a little ‘well done’ shoulder nudge and jokingly suggested I put my sunglasses on to hide my crying eyes.

The Vamps played their music live on stage to finish the show and during the last song, one athlete went to the front of the stage and eventually got all of us to join him and dance on stage, which made the experience even better!

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BUCKINGHAM PALACE

Oh wow! Buckingham Palace is beautiful and so is every member of the Royal Family. It was such an honour to be invited and there was no way I would pass up an opportunity like this. I was a very keen bean to meet the Queen. As we were waiting for the busses to transfer us, David Florence and his group had noticed that my name tag had a little blue dot next to it and they assumed it meant something special – perhaps I really would meet the Queen!

The blue dot turned out to mean I would be part of one of three ‘mingling groups’ to present ourselves to Royal Family members before they entered the main reception rooms with all the other athletes. Perhaps they overheard my excitement! I was so surprised and felt extremely privileged to be among these ‘blue-dotted’ name tags including members of the Gold-Medal-winning Ladies Hockey Team, Helen Glover & Heather Stanning Olympic Rowing pair Champions, Joe Joyce and Giles Scott. We were briefed by Buckingham Palace staff how to introduce ourselves to the Queen and any Royal Family members, should the opportunity arise and all of a sudden I got very nervous! People walked by with drinks and canapés of food – of which I had to try one of everything! I had a sip of champagne just to say I tried it, I had a glass of orange juice and a glass of apple juice. I tried the blazed nut covered soft cheese; the caramelised onion and lettuce wrap bites; the anchovies, pesto and sundried tomato pastries; the duck terrine; the cheese quiche, the smoked salmon served with one shred of ginger and leaf cress; these yellow jelly tots; and a piece of dark chocolate with Buckingham Palace’s homemade honey filled inside. A lady came round and offered us a plate of “Spinach and courgette…..umm….let’s be honest, they’re pastys” – to which we all found amusing and loved this fact she was so honest with us. So when the next lady walked by to offer us the same dish and introduced it with “Spinach and courgette” , we asked what they were and she also couldn’t remember what they were called and replied with an errrmmm… Again we all loved this.

Then the Queen entered the room and came to our group and my heart raced as I shook her hand and curtsied. She spoke to us so politely and she was immaculately beautiful. Her Majesty asked me what sport I was involved with and spoke with us all for a short while, followed by Prince Phillip, and then Prince William & Kate Middleton, who spoke with us for a little longer, asking us about our motivation for the next four years and if we strive for perfection in other areas of our life. The Duchess of Cambridge spoke about her experience with sailing and they were all so pleasant and engaging.

Our group was then able to mingle in the main reception rooms where Prince Harry and Princess Ann later joined and I was able to meet and speak with. At this time I was chatting with Spencer Wilson (Dressage) who I had met in Ascot on Saturday and met Natasha Baker (Dressage) and Vicky Holland (Triathlon). Harry offered us to sleep in Buckingham Palace in a sleeping bag 😀 and I was able to ask what Princess Ann thought about before she competed in her Olympics.

The whole evening was spiffingly marvelous and One had a wonderful time!

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Vicky Holland and Me outside Buckingham Palace after meeting the Royal Family

Olympic Silver Medal!

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Wow!!!! It feels so incredibly amazing, yet extremely surreal, to say that I am the Olympic Silver Medallist for trampoline at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games!!!!

It has been just over two weeks and I have just managed to find enough time to sit down and share with you my experience of becoming an Olympic medalist. Every day that goes by, it becomes less real and it almost sinks in less that one of my wildest dreams actually became a reality! It feels like a distant memory, yet I can remember the competition so vividly, the colours (so much green!), the sounds, the emotions…

“Dreams come a size to big so we can grow into them”

There I was, waiting to march out to compete in my first Olympic Finals, at my first Olympic Games. I wasn’t nervous – I was so excited! Kat Driscoll and I had just made Olympic Trampoline History by being the first British Women to qualify into the finals, but I had more to give. My personal target was to perform my voluntary routine the best I could, and I hadn’t done that in the prelims. I knew I had a better routine in me, and qualifying into the finals gave me one last opportunity to do it. I kept thinking: “This is my last chance to be on the trampoline and perform this routine the way I want it to feel. I have to go for this, I have to give it everything, I have nothing to lose and everything to gain and to achieve what I want to, I can’t hold back”. My training since being selected as part of TeamGB a couple months ago has been the best. I have enjoyed it so much: relishing every moment in the air; feeling the height and speed of each somersault and twist; hitting PBs in execution and TOF; and being in the totally professional, exciting training environment created at Lilleshall NSC by our team. I had this chance to compete everything I had been training for, and I was just so determined to perform my routine the best I possibly could.

We marched out into the arena; the crowd was clapping and cheering and there were cameramen following our every step. I remember just enjoying this energetic atmosphere and taking everything in. I was competing at an Olympic Games and I was enjoying every second of being on the competition floor. I enjoyed looking into the audience and watching their flags wave, hearing their cheers. I liked taking in the cameramen, waving and smiling to my friends and viewers back at home. I tried to savour the moment that we marched in front of the judges, waving to the crowd when our names were announced. It was just such a fantastic feeling having such a large crowd there to watch our sport and that I was there as one of the competitors!

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Then it was time to focus on what I wanted to feel on the trampoline, and prepare myself physically and mentally to achieve just that.

All I was thinking about was feeling the best routine I could because I love that feeling of being in the air and hitting a sweet routine, that is why I do this, I love THAT feeling – I train and I compete because of that feeling. I got on the trampoline, presented and started jumping for the biggest and best routine of my life.

 

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I remember hearing the crowd cheering during my routine, the sounds of the springs when I jumped from the trampoline bed, the air swooshing past me as I spun around. I can remember just feeling strong and high in the air, so in the moment and so focused that everything seemed so clear and so easy. It felt amazing, being in that routine! It felt even better finishing it, knowing that I had just performed the best routine I could have in that moment. It felt awesome. That was exactly the routine I wanted. To me, it was the closest thing I could have got to perfect. I held my hands together above my head and I wore a massive smile on my face. It was just the best feeling, knowing that I had just smashed it. I had done it. I absolutely smashed it when it counted the most! I was just so happy. I felt so free. I didn’t have to hold any more emotions in, or stay focused, or worry about anything. I could just be me. I was no longer about to compete in the biggest competition of my life – instead, I had just competed the best routine of my career, at the Olympic Games!

I presented, rushed off the trampoline to hug Tracy and put my head in my hands – I was so overcome with emotions, I couldn’t thank her enough and she just kept saying well done and enjoy the moment – we sat in the kiss and cry area to await my score. My score came up and AAAHHH! It was a 56!! I was like wow *head in hands* *cry cry cry* *smile* *laugh* *be embarrassed about my reaction* *be happy again* *wave and smile and kiss to the audience* etc. As I left the kiss and cry, Craig and our physio Nathan gave me the biggest hugs. It was all so emotional. I knew I had done my best, and that is everything I could have done, so I would have been happy with whatever position I finished in (even fourth…just).

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Now it was Kat’s turn and I was nervous for her – I wanted her to hit a clean and strong routine so she could experience a similar feeling, I wanted us to both be happy with our performances – then she hit a solid routine, with a smile on her face after she had finished! I was really happy for her, having just missed out on the final at the London Olympics, I knew somewhat what this routine meant to her – she had trained the last four years to not miss out competing that routine, and she had just finished performing it. She had already made history as the first British Trampoline gymnast to compete in a second Olympic Games since its debut in 2000, and by qualifying into the finals, and now she had finished her Olympics with a great routine! Kat is a fantastic competitor and I think this is the perfect time to express my appreciation for her sporting career again, say well done and Thank You! Having her there in the competition helped me to compete how I did – knowing that she would deliver 3 amazing routines and make trampoline history helped me have the mind-set of ‘giving it my all’ and she helped give me the confidence and motivation to do that.

Rosie’s routine was epic and I wasn’t surprised, nor was I sad or disappointed, that she had gone into the lead. She is such an amazing role model and ambassador for our sport and I can honestly say she is one of the nicest competitors I have ever met. She made me feel like she was happier for me being happy with my routine, than she was being happy with hers. Obviously, that is unlikely the case – but she made me feel like it was!

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Then Li Dan, our current World Champion, was competing and I watched her routine with utmost admiration. Then her score fell below mine – I was so shocked! I thought maybe there was something wrong with the score, but there wasn’t. My jaw dropped to the floor…just before I did! I was on my knees with my head in my hands – I was so overcome with emotion. That moment – Oh wow! – it was sooo incredible! I was going to win an Olympic Medal – I was going to win an OLYMPIC MEDAL!!!! – [I haven’t even won an individual European or World Championships medal – I have been 4th in both events] – But I had just won an Olympic Medal – ahhhh! I was going to be stood on the podium and that was everything I ever dreamt about.

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Then Tatsiana scored out of the medals which meant I had won the SILVER! I hadn’t dreamt higher than Bronze and still had a lot of tears in my eyes – so I first realised this through Tracy and Craig’s celebrations before I saw the scores myself. I remember Tracy saying ‘it’s Silver! She’s got the silver!’. I was like huh, ‘whatnow’!? It was amazing!

I marched out, still crying. Rosie was an absolute gem, she was so lovely it was unreal! I was in tears when they were giving us instructions about the podium procedure – so she just let me know the main details – before advising me to just take it all in – it was something told to her before standing on the podium last time – was to take it all in because it will be over so fast. We march out – I trip, obviously… standard. And I see the GB support staff in the crowd cheering and I finally spot my parents and Paul (my personal coach) in the stands. As we started walking past the podiums I turn to the GB lot and start waving – but then bump into Rosie as I have walked too far… she just gently moves me into the correct position. HAHA…so embarrassing! The crowd laughed (hopefully with me and hopefully like ‘awe how adorable’ laugh, rather than ‘that was so stupid’ laugh – but it was still hilarious and was so me! J).

Then it is announced: “The Siver Medallist from Great Britain….Bryony Page!”!!!! I wave and step onto the podium…still crying 😀 It was so surreal but I felt like the crowd and all my supporters were there with me. It was so amazing and so incredible! And Rosie gets onto the podium and I am clapping with utmost admiration. Then when the Canadian National Anthem is playing, I take it as my own and just feel so proud and happy! Li Dan and I join Rosie on the podium for photos and then we march out and have photos taken and that is where the whirlwind of media and celebrations began!

I am so excited for the next chapter of my journey. This medal is far more I ever imagined possible when I first started trampolining and receiving it was just so special. Some people have asked me already if I feel pressure to bring back Gold in the future – but I don’t feel pressure! The Silver has given me confidence that I can compete with the best and it has given me more motivation and excitement towards my training. I am seriously looking forward to getting back on the trampoline and upgrading my routines, pushing my boundaries and seeing what more I can do!

THE LONG LIST OF THANK YOUS!

I want to thank everyone for all your lovely good luck and congratulations messages, I am blessed to have so many people involved in my journey and I definitely felt your support in Rio!

There is a massive team of people that have been part of my journey and I can’t thank them enough for their help and support:

Thank you to Tracy Whittaker-Smith (our National Coach)Craig Lowther, Alan Edge, Sharon Wood & all the support staff at Lilleshall National Sports Centre & EIS. You have created such an amazing environment to train in, especially in the last few months, and I am so happy I can bring back some bling to show for the hard-work we have all put in together! Thank you my teammates, all the clubs I have trained with (Wrenbury Wasps, Aerodynamics, Abbey Flyers/Sheffield TA, NTGA), all the coaches, teachers (esp. PE department at Malbank 6th form), physios (esp. Lindy, Nathan), chiropractor (Gareth), doctors (esp. Chris), S&C coaches (Ruddy, Mark, Adela), judges (esp. Claire), sports analysts (Bex, Claire), nutritionists (Mhairi), lifestyle gurus (Lynsey), & sports psychologists (Gemma, Matt, Pete) that have had their input over the years. Thank you to Andy Cox, his Sport Sheffield team and the APS department at the University of Sheffield that helped me to balance and pursue my academic and sporting ambitions. A special thanks to Martin Perry – who many years ago helped me get over my loss of confidence when I wouldn’t even do a front somersault – and my coach at the time, Nigel Blundell who was so patient with me when I was really struggling – I may not even be trampolining right now if it wasn’t for them! Thanks to my first trampolining coaches (Jason, Brian, Eric) – I would not have the passion for this sport if it wasn’t for you! And passion is everything – it stopped me from giving up through all those tough times and meant I enjoyed every second of somersaulting in the air! I would like to also thank UK Sport and the National Lottery, whose funding and programmes have enabled me to train full time for the last year to fully concentrate on trampolining.

A GIGANTIC thank you to my coach Paul Greaves (& everyone that helped fund his ticket to Rio), my family and my friends for always being there for me. I have said this before, but I can’t say it enough times that my parents are the best role models I could ever ask for, inspiring me to become a better person, always supporting me & my dreams, and always keeping me happy. Paul (potato), you are amazing! You are so caring, energetic, fun and supportive. You were there to pick me up when I was down, when I needed a shoulder to cry on and someone to talk to when I was on the verge of not believing in my dreams any longer. This year especially, you have helped me get through some rough times – with no other intention than just to help me find happiness again – and for that I can’t thank you enough! Such an amazing coach and friend to have in my life.

I’m Fundraising

Hi everyone! In a few weeks time I will be helping out at a Bounce-a-thon back in the gym where I first started trampolining: The Wingate Centre. The Bounce-a-thon itself is charity event, where those involved are sponsored to help raise money for the gymnastics centre. The Wingate Centre is an incredible gymnastics facility, specialised for people with special needs and disabilities whilst also welcoming mainstream gymnasts.

Please help me in sharing my support with this fantastic centre as what they do benefits so many people in so many different ways! For me, lifelong friends, fantastic memories and the start of an exciting career in trampolining. For others, the Wingate Centre provides a fun place to experience sport, improve social skills and gain self-esteem.

Just follow this link to my justgiving page if you wish to donate (and complete a random act of kindness for the day) to help raise money for the Trust that helps keep the Centre open and run gymnastics, trampolining & dance classes and residential visits for children with physical and learning difficulties. 

What the Wingate Centre means to me…

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Interview with the Portuguese Trampoline Team

Interviewing Diogo, Ana & Luis

Yesterday evening I had the pleasure of interviewing Olympians DIOGO GANCHINHO and ANA RENTE with their coach LUIS NUNES. These three inspiring people are valued members of the Portuguese Trampoline Team and were our overseas guests this week, training alongside the GB trampoline team during our training camp in Lilleshall National Sports Centre. I am very thankful they gave up their time to answer my questions. And I hope you readers enjoy their interview as much as I did!

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(From Left to Right): Two-time Olympian (2008 & 2012) and 4-time World Championships Finalist DIOGO GANCHINHO; Former POR tumbling, DMT and Trampoline gymnast and current Portuguese National Coach LUIS NUNES; ME; Two-time Olympian (2008 & 2012) and junior European Champion (2004) ANA RENTE. (Diogo, Ana and Luis all train together at Lisboa Ginasio Clube in Lisbon, Portugal).

 

An easy question to start with: How long have you been involved in trampolining?

Luis: I’ve been involved in trampolining since 1978. I started coaching in 1990 and retired as an athlete in 1994.

Diogo: When I was 6 years old … so 22 years.

Ana: I started trampolining in 1996.

 

What has been your favourite moment or competition in trampolining?

Luis: As an athlete my favourite memory has to be my last competition…the 1994 World Championships held in Portugal. It was special for me because it was in my home country in front of a Portuguese crowd. It wasn’t my best competition in terms of results, although I won a medal on DMT [bronze individual and team gold], but it was my favourite because I was competing in front of a home crowd for my last competition. As a coach, my favourite competitions were the Olympic Games (2004, 2008 & 2012).

Diogo: This is a difficult question because I have several. Firstly, the Olympics were great experiences, definitely. But it’s hard to say if they were my favourite. I think my favourite moment ever was when I finished my finals routine at the 2013 World Championships in Sofia (Bulgaria). It was just the best feeling after finishing that routine.

[click here and FAST FORWARD to 3:28 to watch Diogo’s 2013 World Championship Finals Routine][This is seriously worth watching…you can see why it is his favourite moment and his reaction to this spectacular routine is heart warming]

Diogo: Another favourite was my first World Age Group Championships when I was 8 years old…It was a crazy experience! I placed, in the trampoline event, 30th or something and in DMT I got a 0.0 [laughs]! But I did a good first routine and I finished 6th in the synchronised event with my teammate David Caeiro. Those are my top moments.

Ana: Oooh, difficult question…I will say my favourite competition was the 2004 Junior European Championships because I won gold medal! That is my biggest moment.

 

What are you most proud of, within or outside of sport?

L: I am most proud of my education. I am proud of my parents…they educated me in life.

D: I think everything I am, is from sport. I am proud to have the capacity to learn from people from everywhere in the world and that this is what made me the way I am. I am thankful and proud.

A: I’m proud of my journey. In sports and in my profession [Ana is a doctor!]. Because I was able to manage both things, that is something to be proud of. I have been working [as a family doctor] for 2 years and have been studying for the last 7. The studying is always in progress, I have not finished yet.

 

What was the best advice you were ever given?

L: This comes from the way I was raised: ‘keep your principles, your morals, your ethics’. Don’t sell yourself to the interest of something else, remember what you believe in. Keep your integrity! I learnt this advice from my family.

D: The best advice that I had was ‘to get out of your own way and let yourself pass’… something like that. You are like a wall blocking yourself from what you want, so take that wall (yourself) away so you can get out of your own way, pass the wall and achieve. This advice was given to me by my girlfriend, she knows me well!

A: For me it is: ‘No matter what, be humble’.

D: I think for me I am too humble, so for me that wouldn’t be good advice [laughs].

 

Do you have a motto or saying that you train or live by?

L: Be better than I was yesterday and make the people I work with better than they were yesterday… “keep everything evolving”.

D: I don’t have something like that! I have a quote which is related to sports. I remember it often…it’s something like “winning is a habit and unfortunately so is losing”. I remember it, but I don’t live by it.

A: I can’t think of one… “enjoy life”!?

D: Yeah, have fun!

 

What is your biggest challenge (in life or sport) and what do you do to manage this challenge?

L: My biggest challenge is to raise my kids properly. What do I do to manage that?… I try to keep my principles and pass them on to my children.

D: Maybe my biggest challenge is going to be what to do after trampolining… and I’m still figuring that out.

A: Becoming respectful doctor is my biggest challenge. Studying is to manage it. [laughs]

 

Do you have plans after this Olympic Cycle? Will you share them with us?

D: Luis will need to go out for this question, he will get upset! [jokingly pats Luis’ back]. After the Olympics, training won’t be my top priority, family will be. I want to start a family. And also, I would say, personal projects. That’s it. If I have the chance to keep enjoying trampolining at the same time, with it not being the top priority, I will still do it.

L: I will probably always continue coaching…I dunno, depends how life goes. I would like to do different things among the world of trampolining, maybe not coaching but … other things. I am at the UEGTC (European Union of Gymnastics Technical Commission) and enjoying it so…who knows.

D: Ahh! How am I going to be happy after this!? I love training. [all laugh].

A: I will stop training and stop competing. I will start a family and focus on my professional life. I would like to be involved in trampolining, but I don’t think I will have the time to do that!

L: Become a judge Ana…or head of delegations…

D: Don’t do that Ana!

A: Ummmm…

 

Who is the loudest in the gym?

L: That should be me.

D: I am the least loud. Really.

A: I agree.

D: Wait, do you think we are loud…do you think everyone will be yelling and screaming in our gym?

 

Who is your sporting idol?

D: Ooooh that’s a good question! I have so many… Kelly Slater… because he dated Pamela Anderson. Just kidding! [all laugh]. He is an 11-time World Champion, not many people can say that; he was the youngest one and the oldest one. Why do I admire him? He always had the capacity to adapt himself to the progression of the sport. At the age of 42 now, he is still one of the best in the world and that is something I admire. Another sporting idol of mine is Connor Mcgregor. He’s an irish MMA (mixed martial arts) fighter he is cocky as hell! He’s at the UFC [Ultimate Fighting Championships] and he’s like saying he is going to beat everybody and stuff like that. I don’t see myself being that way, but I admire what he’s doing. I also really like Bruce Lee. He’s not an athlete, but I like the way he was thinking.

A: For me it is Tatsiana Piatrenia, because I always love her position in the air and her technique. I think she is a really strong girl and I just like the way she jumps. This World Championships she was really impressive; she was jumping like she has never done before!

L: I have several…Nuno Merino, Ana Rente, Diogo Ganchinho, Andre Lico. [all very successful athletes Luis has coached]

D: He’s so sweet…

 

If you could choose any other sport to be amazing at what would it be?

L: I would choose football. I love football…and if I was amazing at football, I would be very rich [laughs]. But I chose it not because of that – just because I love it.

D: [short pause]

L: Surfing for Diogo…

D: Surfing maybe… or some martial arts. I like martial arts…a lot! Maybe MMA.

L: [laughing]

D: But I don’t think I’d be good at it.

A: I don’t know…

D: No wait, I know! I gave the wrong answer before. Snowboarding! I love it! I’d be really good because I could do a miller on the snow. I could become the first ever Olympian that has competed in the Summer and the Winter Olympic Games from Portugal.

A: Ok, I have one now. Skateboarding.

L: She wants to be the Portuguese Tony Hawk.

A: I would like that.

D: Yes! She’d have the style and the skill.

 

What do you do when you are not trampolining? Do you have any hobbies?

L: I am a PE teacher in a state school. My hobbies? … running, cycling, surfing.

D: I am just trampolining now. Besides that, I do other sports when I can…like surfing.

A: Hobbies?… I watch TV, go to the cinema, eat at good restaurants, be with friends.

L: Drinking wine with friends…

 

How have you found training at Lilleshall? What do you think of the facilities and the atmosphere?

L: Great! Fantastic!

A: Amazing.

D: I am still waiting for Harry Potter to show up because I feel like I’m visiting Hogwarts. [all laugh].  I’m thinking “Is this for real?”. It’s a great place…the best I have been to.

 

Final Question! Would you rather be able to fly or become invisible?

D: FLY!

A: FLY.

D: Why invisible!?

L: Become a fly like the animal?…Oh fly, like [makes superman flying hand motion].  I would like both. Fly on the weekends and be invisible other times.

You can only choose one.

L: Maybe fly…Maybe that’s why we are on the trampoline, because we want to fly.