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Small school succeeds on big stage


A team of Year 5/6 girls who came together in February for the first time have done their small Catholic school proud by finishing first in their category in the National Schoolaerobics Championships in Queensland.

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The students from Our Lady of Grace Glengowrie were initially excited to be competing in the regional competition at Brighton High School in May. They progressed to the SA State finals at Norwood Town Hall at the end of June and after placing second were selected to represent South Australia at the nationals in August.

The Pink Ladies team trained twice a week before school under the tutelage of experienced aerobics instructor Katie Cummings who is Physical Education specialist at the R-6 school.

Ms Cummings said during each training they worked on strength, flexibility, timing and performance.

“After learning the 1:45 minute routine it was time to learn positions and perfect every movement,” she said.

“The girls were enthusiastic and motivated. They showed persistence to execute the moves precisely and developed a great sense of body awareness through the different movements.”

Ms Cummings said the team showed great commitment by training in the school holidays before making their way to the Gold Coast, with the support of their parents.

On the day of the competition, they were up early to dress in their costumes, put their hair in a “precise” bun and warm up.

After joining schools from around the country to sing ‘Stand up for a Champion’ and join in the opening ceremony, the team nervously waited side stage to perform.

“All of their hard work had come down to this performance and they were ready to give it their best shot,” Ms Cummings said.

“The girls took to the stage confidently and had a ball! They looked great and regardless of the result we knew that they had done their best.”

Each team was welcomed back on stage for the presentations and when the third and second place-getters were called out and it wasn’t them, the girls were sure they hadn’t “medalled”.

“Then the presenter said it…….first place in the Primary Stage One Open Category, Our Lady of Grace, The Pink Ladies,” Ms Cummings said.

“The girls bounded up onto the stage proudly to receive their medals and the tears were flowing from parents and even the coach!”

Students in the winning team included: (Year 5) Macy O’Connor, Jaeda O’Connor, Alexia Hobart, Jessica McManus; (Year 6) Lucy Measday, Grace Murphy, Zara McKeough, Olivia Prior, Giaan Taylor and Imogen Penhall.

Ms Cummings thanked her “fabulous assistant coaches”, Isabella and Lola, who were a great help and gave valuable feedback to the team. On the day of the national performance, a trio including Isabella and Lola won gold in their category for the second year in a row. The two girls began aerobics at Our Lady of Grace in 2017 and now compete for Activ8 aerobics club where Ms Cummings is an instructor.


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