Getting a Grip with Stephanie McGregor 'Summer in Corvallis'

Sept. 1, 2009

Hi Beaver fans!

It's hard to believe summer is almost over and that we report for official practice in a week! I can't wait to have the whole team together in the gym again!! Although practice is a lot more laid back during the summer time, we have all been working hard to learn new skills, rehab injuries and stay in shape despite a lot of the team being out of town. Summer is our only chance during the year to go home for more than a few days so we try to take advantage of that. Unless, you decide to take far too much summer school, like I did.

Staying in Corvallis for summer school has its advantages however. By taking classes now, you can plan for an easier course schedule during the season when we are travelling, and the classes finish quickly because you're only focusing on one subject at a time. Plus, it's much easier to practice gymnastics here where you have the support from teammates, great facilities, and feedback from our excellent coaches (unless they're travelling across the nation to recruit). And the Oregon summers are beautiful! I had always assumed it rained in Oregon all the time. But I have definitely realized that's not the case at all. I was here in Corvallis for the ridiculous heat wave near the end of July. Where I'm from in Canada it just does NOT get that hot, so that was quite the experience! That week we had to move practice up to 7 a.m. so that we could still work out despite the crazy weather. One great way I discovered to escape the heat is to float the Willamette River which runs past downtown. It's nice and relaxing, just make sure you don't lose your flip flops. Between the river, pool and air-conditioned movie theater I was able to survive my first major heat wave. Some members of our team are summer babies so it was lots of fun to celebrate all the birthdays throughout the summer, too.

Most of the team was around for camp week. During that week, almost 200 young gymnasts came to the OSU overnight gymnastics camp. It was a very busy week as we fulfilled our camp counselor and coaching duties and those of us with class managed to finish homework on top of it all. It was great to see the girls improve their gymnastics while having lots of fun and made me remember when I was first learning the basics of the sport. The campers certainly kept us counselors on the go all week, but it was worth it to see their big smiles when they mastered a new skill and made new friends!

The freshmen (minus Mel) came for three weeks to participate in the BEST Bridge Program. Check out Leilani's blog to learn more about their experience. Most of our teammates were also here at the time and it made me so excited for our team next year!

Overall, it's been a GREAT summer here in Corvallis. But now it's about time to start official practice so we'll be ready to go for our first meet come January.


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