By Anna Rose Johnson

Sixteen-year-old Jade Chrobok is having a whirlwind year. After placing fourth at the 2018 Birmingham World Cup in March, Chrobok played an instrumental role in Canada’s historic victory at the Commonwealth Games. Soon after, this powerful young gymnast chatted with us about her new gold medal, her future goals and what it was like to compete alongside Olympic veterans at Commonwealths!

Feature Photo Courtesy Gymnastics Canada

Inside Gymnastics: Tell us a little about yourself and your gymnastics career!

Jade Chrobok: I started gymnastics when I was three or four years old, at T-dot Tumblers in a parent and tot program. My parents tell me that I loved to jump around and have fun in the gym! I moved to East York Gymnastics Club in 2009, and then moved to Gemini Gymnastics in Oshawa in 2012, where I have competed for most of my competitive gymnastics career. I am very grateful that gymnastics has given me the opportunity to travel throughout Canada and to different countries all around the world.

Inside Gymnastics: What was it like to compete at the Birmingham World Cup?

Jade: The Birmingham World Cup was a crazy experience. It was the biggest competition that I had been to at the time, and competing against seven other world class gymnasts was a very humbling feeling for me. The format of the competition and atmosphere was all new to me, and given the new environment, I feel I performed well and gained a lot of experience that I was able to take with me to the next competition.

Inside: Please tell us about the Commonwealth Games! What was it like to win the team gold?

Jade: The Commonwealth Games were surreal and amazing! It was the first games I had been to and could not have asked for better teammates. The competition was nerve-racking, but our team managed to put out our best three routines which were good enough to take the gold medal alongside Australia and England. The atmosphere in the village was great, with different athletes from each country milling about, and the opportunity to meet new people from different countries of the Commonwealth was something I will cherish forever. I am so grateful for all I learned about myself from this experience and that I had the opportunity to wear the maple leaf on my chest alongside this amazing team of gymnasts and coaches, and could not have asked for a better Commonwealth Games experience!

Inside: Could you tell us about competing alongside Olympic veterans such as Ellie Black and Brittany Rogers?

Jade: Competing alongside Ellie Black and Brittany Rogers was great. Having their support and having them help me with all of the new aspects of the games was so valuable. Being the youngest member on the team, all of the other team members acted as role models for me, and we all worked together as a team, and I believe that’s what made us so successful in the games.

Inside: What have been some of your favorite competition moments so far this season?

Jade: The team competition from the Commonwealth Games was by far the most memorable competition this year. Competition with the Canadian team was such a fun experience, cheering each other on and working together while also winning a gold medal was phenomenal.

Inside: How has your training been going currently?

Jade: Training has been going well, after back-to-back competitions in Birmingham and Australia, I have been letting my body recuperate from the time change as I focus on gearing up for the Canadian Nationals at the end of May. 

Inside: When will your next competition be?

Jade: My next competition will be Canadian National Championships, in Waterloo, Ontario, this May.

Inside: What are your goals for the rest of 2018?

Jade: My goals for the rest of 2018 are to add in some new skills I have been working on and to continue to improve my gymnastics.

Inside: What are your long-term gymnastics goals? Is Tokyo 2020 a goal?

Jade: 2020 is always in the back of my mind, but I like to take it one day, week, month at a time, and see where I am at. 2020 is two years away, so right now I am focusing on Nationals.

Inside: Is there anything else you’d like to add?

Jade: I have had an amazing year so far, and I would just like to thank my parents, coaches and everyone at home for being so supportive. I could not have done any of it without all of their support.

Check out this clip from Jade’s uneven bars routine during event finals at Elite Canada in 2017! Look at those lines!

Video via Regina Vilela

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

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