Four members of Delta Gymnastics are having the experience of a lifetime this week as they tour Japan.
Thorstein Fischer, assistant coordinator of the men’s artistic gymnastics program, and gymnasts Alex Shilvock (12), Lucas Liu (13) and Owen Aubey (16) left on Dec. 4 for a two-week trip to experience Japanese gymnastics and culture.
“The trip is designed to increase their knowledge of Japanese culture as well as grow the athlete’s understanding of how gymnasts train in other countries,” Fischer said in press release.
While in Japan, Fischer will also be judging at the Annual Toyota International Gymnastics Competition in Aichi.
“Gymnastics culture in Japan is huge, much larger than in Canada. Our exposure to top level gymnastics will be tremendous and we have a full agenda planned,” Fischer said.
The group will be doing a homestay in Yokkaichi where they will immerse themselves in the Japanese way of life.
A high point of their trip will be training at the University Nittaidai in Yokohama, home of world champion floor gymnast Kenzo Shirai. Shirai currently has more skills than any other male gymnast — three each on floor and vault — and all six are officially named after him as he was the first to successfully complete them at a major international competition.
“We are so excited to meet Kenzo and see the different styles of training,” Aubey said in a press release. “This will be important for us as we hope to incorporate new styles into our own training.”
Shilvock and Liu similarly see the trip as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
“We are happy to be able to combine the sport of gymnastics with site-seeing and learning about a new culture,” Lui said in a press release.