NAIGC Nationals 2024 in Alburque New Mexico

It is our first time to New Mexico, and it is our first time to a NAIGC gymnastics competition. I've been in gymnastics since the 1980s and have never heard of NAIGC. It is an adult division of gymnastics, and by adult it means anyone can compete from out of high school to well into your 60s! NAIGC really is the true essence of for the love of the sport of gymnastics. We were thrilled and honored to be invited to such a cool event, which was the NAIGC Nationals held in Albuqurque this year, and we learned a lot about it, which I will share with you here.

I grew up a gymnast in the 80s and 90s when gymnastics was much different then it is today. Nothing like NAIGC existed back in the day, that I know of. Although I had a lot of fun in the sport while growing up, the toughness of the sport may have outweighed the fun for me. Being here at this meet, I can see why the competitors still love the sport so much, or maybe even fell back in love with it. Some of us were left with some sort of childhood traumas from the sport, and if not from the sport, maybe from something else. NAIGC allows for full play in gymnastics. Play is vital for rewiring the brain. The gymnasts were able to express themselves in such a fun and positive way.


The gymnasts are here because they want to be here. There is no pressure. Many if not most of them don't even have a coach. They train for the most part at local gymnastics clubs and some might be affiliated with colleges that do not have an official NCAA gymnastics team. With NAIGC, they are sill able to represent their school. The hours they train per week can vary from 1 to however many fits into their lives. They fit the sport into their life, not the other way around when gymnastics prioritized over life. How many hours they practice may also be determined by how many of the events they train/compete in.

In NAIGC both men and women are both allowed to train any of the 12 events- women's vault, bars, beam, floor; men's pommel horse, parellel bars, high bar, still rings, vault, floor; and tumble and trampoline. You can train 1 or up to the 12 events. If an athletes participate in all 12 events it is called an Omnithon. So yes, for example, you will see men compete on the bar and women compete on the rings at these events. 

 So even though you may not find me competing on the bars or balance beam ever again, you will most likely find Foxy's at some of the upcoming NAIGC competitions. This is definitely a division of gymnastics that I can stand behind and support. The community is very fun and upbeat. I had the opportunity to meet many of the gymnasts and hear their stories. Most of them had some sort of a gymnastics background, but some of them never had any gymnastics background and started training in their adult years. I met one guy who was 62 and he was competing. He had taken 30 years off from the sport and started training again just a few years ago. His giant, giant, double flyaway off the high bar was most impressive!

Leave a comment