By Anna Rose Johnson
One of Great Britain’s most promising young gymnasts is Alice Kinsella, a 17-year-old from Park Wrekin Gymnastics Club. Her accolades in the sport thus far include three medals at the 2016 Junior European Championships, and three medals—including beam gold—at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. We recently caught up with Alice to chat about her the season, her current training and the competitions she’s aiming for in the coming years.
Photos by Alan Edwards/British Gymnastics
Inside Gymnastics: Tell us a little about yourself and your gymnastics career!
Alice Kinsella: I’ve been training for 14 years; [I] started gymnastics [at] age 3 and have been at elite level for about 8 years now. These last two years have probably been the hardest of my career, moving from junior to senior, but [they] have also been the best two years. Competing in the World Championships and Commonwealth Games and the World Cup in my home town of Birmingham has been very special.
Inside: What was it like to win the all-around bronze at the 2018 Birmingham World Cup?
Alice: To win bronze at the Gymnastics World Cup in Birmingham was amazing and definitely a night I will never forget. I went in there to mainly get experience ahead of the Commonwealth Games and for future events this year, so to come home with a medal was surreal.
Alice: I don’t think my Commonwealth Games could have gone much better. Coming away with these medals and one being gold was incredible. It was definitely the best experience of my life. Starting off with team silver, the girls worked together as a team so well. We pushed each other on and supported each other all the way. We all managed to focus on one event at a time, and that’s what gave us the silver. The next day was the all-around bronze, which was also amazing and showed that all my hard work had paid off. Then, finally, to become the Commonwealth Champion was incredible. Definitely the best way to end my games. Qualifying in second gave me good confidence for the final. All I needed to do was the same routine to get a medal, but in the end I think I did the best routine I’ve ever done, scoring 13.700. Beam was definitely the one piece I really wanted to medal on, and now I’m the champion! It’s amazing.
Inside: What have been some of your favorite competition moments so far this season?
Alice: My favorite competition moments this season are the team, all-around and beam final [at Commonwealths]. Also getting silver on beam at the British Championships.
Inside: Could you tell us about your experience at 2017 Worlds and your quick comeback from the injury you sustained in Montreal?
Alice: My experience at the 2017 Worlds was one I’ll never forget. Yes, I hurt my foot, but still, qualifying for the all-around final was amazing. Not being able to compete was horrible, but in a way it had to happen so I could get fit again. My comeback took longer than expected, which made it hard for me to get competition-ready this year, but I worked really hard and it’s definitely all paid off.
Inside: How has your training been going currently?
Alice: My training since the games has been going pretty well. It was a struggle at first coming back from Australia, but we knew that would be the case. I’m now learning a few more skills whilst looking to improve the ones I have.
Inside: Have you done ballet or other dance training?
Alice: I sometimes do ballet in training on Tuesdays. I think ballet is really helpful with gymnastics because it really helps with your posture and positioning of hands and feet. The only dance ever I really do is with my floor work, just lots of repetition to make it as good as it can be.
Inside: When will your next competition be?
Alice: I’m hoping my next competition will be the European Championships in Glasgow in August, and then hopefully my second World Championships in Doha.
Inside: What are your long-term gymnastics goals? Is Tokyo 2020 a goal?
Alice: [My] long-term goals are Tokyo 2020 and the Commonwealth Games back in Birmingham in 2022. To compete in [Commonwealths] in my home city would be amazing!
Check out this clip of Alice’s floor routine from the 2018 Birmingham World Cup! Stunning!
Video via BGtv British Gymnastics
Anna Rose Johnson writes about women’s artistic and rhythmic gymnastics. She loves Whippets, brownies, and full-twisting double layouts. Her writing portfolio can be viewed at: https://annarosejohnson.contently.com