Canadian junior trampoline gymnastics gold medallist Joey Humberstone reflected on being “a very active boy” at eight years old, around the time he started doing flips in a controlled environment instead of in his backyard.
“I had a tendency to practise stunts on my own at home and school,” recalled Humberstone, now 17 and a national champion in junior level double-mini trampoline
So Humberstone’s grandma Dorothy put him into Flip City Gymnastics so that he could learn skills correctly and, he said, “use my energy in a safe and professional facility.”
“For me this was the place I needed to be – it was a fun environment for me to jump, flip, twist, and just go crazy with my tricks,” the Langley Secondary student said. “The kind and friendly atmosphere encouraged me to keep going on when the going got tough.”
After his first year of training, Humberstone started competing against other young athletes at the same level. Humberstone’s first competition was for the BC trials “Snowball Cup” when he was nine.
“It was a great experience. I kept training and continued to attend the competitions,” Humberstone said. “I have learned a great deal in this process, both from my coaches and watching other athletes.”
Since that time, Humberstone has won medals and competed in the B.C. Trials.
He also achieved his goal of being able to reach a high enough level to compete in the Canadian championships.
Humberstone has travelled with Team BC for Canadian competitions in Ottawa, Toronto, Regina, and Calgary.
In 2014, he competed in an international meet in Florida and came home with a silver medal.
While competing in nationals the last few years, Humberstone worked to earn a high enough score to qualify for the World Age Group Championships, and represent his country in trampoline competitions.
This summer, in Calgary, Humberstone finally reached his goal of winning a Canadian gold medal by achieving the top score for junior level double-mini trampoline and becoming the national champion.
The key to his recent success, Humberstone said, has been focus.
“I trained really hard this year,” Humberstone said. “I could have done better last year. This year, I trained more consistently so I could be more confident in my competitions.”
“I am excited that I have the opportunity to pursue my dream by being named to Team Canada,” Humberstone added.
He will represent Canada at the World Age Group competition in Odense, Denmark this December.
“My main goal for worlds is to do as well as I have been, in my training, and to make finals and try to compete really well,” Humberstone said. “I haven’t been to a world championships, but I have been to other international meets. I’m sure it’s a lot more pressure because the worlds is a bigger competition.”
A gofundme page has been set up to help Humberstone cover the expenses of going to Denmark.
Humberstone figures it will cost him between $5,000 and $6,000 5 to represent his country in Denmark. This includes his flight, accommodation, Team Canada attire, and competition fee.