Gymnastics has long been shown to be one of the best exercises for overall health and wellbeing – not only does the sport help physically, but it also boosts self-esteem, determination, and confidence. In a time where children have missed so much sport and social interaction, finding ventures that encourage our children to become more active again seems more vital than ever.
Velocity Gymnastics Academy was founded in 2014 by two local coaches who, having worked together previously within the district, saw the need for high quality, progressive and, most importantly, friendly gymnastics classes within the Sevenoaks area. Franki Riches and Sarah Kemp originally started offering their gymnastics sessions in Otford, before expanding in 2016 within a local prep school in Oxted. The move allowed for an expansion in equipment, timetable and provision in the local area, enabling them to offer opportunities for children at all levels within different disciplines.
Since 2014, Velocity have produced several local, county and regional champions across a variety of disciplines, but have most importantly built a family community within their classes, focusing on an ethos of ‘nurture the child, not just the athlete’.
Despite the heartache of 2020, Sarah and Franki took a leap of faith and started hunting for a forever home for their gymnastics family, and they were lucky enough to find a place of their own just down the road in Edenbridge. This newest move will allow them to create a sorely needed venue in the district, offering a wide variety of classes from toddlers to teens. The new facility, based off of Commerce Way in Edenbridge, will enable them to introduce the area’s first sprung floor, expand their equipment offering to service their highly successful Women’s Artistic programme, but more importantly offer an accessible venue in which children in the area can find a true love for a sport.
Velocity Gymnastics are now able to offer entry level classes from 18+ Months all the way up to adults, expand their Floor & Vault and Women’s Artistic squads, and are even introducing Cheerleading within their venue to keep children active and motivated as they grow up. The new venue in Edenbridge will not only serve the gymnastics demand in the area, but it will also create a new studio space that can be used by local dance schools, fitness teachers and more. “We’re really trying to encourage this venue to be as useful to the community as we can make it”, reports Franki. “We always wanted to make this move in to Edenbridge, as so many of our members are from the area, and we’re hoping that this becomes a place for learning, building friendships, parties – whatever the community may need us for. We’ve been in the place of a local business trying to find a home, so if we can offer the opportunity to other fitness ventures that’s great!”
Velocity Gymnastics Academy will be opening their doors, subject to local restrictions, after the Easter holidays. You can view more information about their range of classes, timetable and how to sign up for a trial by visiting their website at velocitygymnastics.co.uk.