Talented Gymnastic Strength Training Coach

GymnasticBodies Singapore

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I have not met a gymnast until Gregory Gan. Sure I have watched gymnastics every 4 years, and reminisced the time Nadia Comaneci scored perfect tens. But working with a gymnast daily, it’s my first with Gregory. I didn’t practice gymnastics during childhood but fortuitous to watch gymnastics on TV during the Olympics. I was stupefied by the performances with no idea how to tell which gymnast was better or why they lost points — until I started gymnastic strength training.

However, it showed up even less my knowledge. I am in kindergarten with gymnastics.

Knowing and working with Greg jacks up my esteem of gymnasts. Apart from their physicality, formidable motor skills, it takes grit to become a gymnast.

I am envious whenever I see Greg moves — and I wish I have some of his mobility let alone the skills.

Watch this short clip of his mobility.

 

Enjoy finding out more about Gregory.

How many years were you an athlete – training as a gymnast?

strength-training

I trained as a gymnast for 18 years, since the age of 6. My siblings were in gymnastics too, so I had to join the bandwagon!

When did you start coaching? Has it always in gymnastics? Did you take a course to coach gymnastics?

I started coaching when I was 17, as a part-time job for a private company when I was recuperating from an injury. I took the NCAP certification for general gymnastics.

 You started out as an athlete. How has it been with the change in roles now that you are the coach, training others?

There isn’t much of a difference in perspective as I had to plan my own training and understand moves that I’m more suited to. The only difficulty now as a coach, is to provide that for others and to cater to their needs and goals, while ensuring their safety. Lesson plans have to be customised for each person, for them to progress in the most safe and efficient way.

It’s been a year+ since you started coaching adults in gymnastic strength training. How is coaching adults different from coaching children?

The curriculum is technically the same but with more detailed explanation and demonstrations. More progressions are also added, in order to accommodate clients of different physical fitness levels. Safety has to be more rigorous since most adults come from sedentary lifestyles and/or ridden with pre-existing injuries; and adults are physically bigger and heavier to spot than children.

How does your background of rigorous training sessions help you with your clients?

It helps me to empathise with my clients plus it encourages me to think of a progression or how to breakdown a skill to make it easier for others to learn. In addition, I would often know if someone is “cheating” or not when executing the movements.

What is the ONE (or maybe two) advice you have for everyone in gymnastic strength training?

  • Listen to your body and the coach.
  • Safety always come first.

Besides gymnastics and coaching, what are you passionate about – subject or topics that excite or interests you?

I’m currently a recognised international judge under the FIG (International Federation of Gymnastics). I am helping to support the sport in Singapore in every way I can. I’m also interested in the environment – nature reserves to marine conservation.

What are your favourite activities or vacation spot?

Watching TV series (Game of Thrones) and movies.

After having retired from competing, what are your objectives in training now?

My goal now is to maintain, polish and improve on my physicality and certain skills that are required in the syllabus. I would also hope to be able to perform skills that I wasn’t able to do as an athlete, now that I do not have to focus on 6 apparatus.

What is your exercise regime and diet like?

I eat anything I want in moderation. I try to workout everyday but there’ll definitely be a day off.

What is a chill-out day for you like?

 Just staying home or hanging out with friends.

 Do you have a role-model? Or someone whom you admire, and why?

No, I don’t have a role model anymore. My drive is always to be better than yesterday. I think it’s better to be yourself than strive to be someone else.

Compiled by : LayYong

Interviewed by: Louisa Lau

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