Perform routines that show off your physical strength and grace.

What does a Gymnast do?

Pound for pound, Gymnasts are among the most impressive Athletes in the sports community. Raw athletic ability and an uncanny work ethic are two traits integral to aspiring Gymnasts looking to make their mark.

Due to the competitive nature of the sport, only a handful of elite-level Gymnasts join the professional ranks and achieve their Olympic dreams. Your best bet at scoring a career in gymnastics is to become an Instructor or Coach, using all you’ve learned over the years to groom the next generation.

The nation’s top Gymnasts are typically introduced to the sport at a young age, when the brain absorbs base movements – and detailed instruction from Coaches – like a sponge. In the pursuit of a college scholarship or something greater, you and your parents will need to make some serious sacrifices. Weekdays are often divided between school and working out.

Your fellow Gymnasts become your best friends. You spend your time perfecting routines in a variety of events – they vary by gender – and building up both strength and endurance. Your parents may need to pony up for instruction and gym costs.

Your odds of becoming the next Mary Lou Retton or Paul Hamm aren’t great, but don’t let that deter you. At worst, you’ll develop a work ethic that should serve you no matter where life takes you. And the bonds forged with teammates and Coaches last a lifetime.