27 August 2021
Blog: Our Homegrown Hero - Olivia Vivian
Many gymnasts dream of competing in the Olympics - representing their country in the sport they love the most. Our homegrown hero Olivia Vivian lived that dream, after beginning her gymnastics journey at the age of eight at Claremont PCYC. Despite this being a huge achievement, the Olympics was only the beginning for Olivia!
Having been born with a diaphragmatic hernia, it was believed that Olivia would never really succeed in sporting endeavours… that was until she enrolled in gymnastics! According to Olivia, she instantly fell in love.
“I just had a passion for it. I loved it, so it didn’t feel like learning – it felt like playing”.
This love for the sport led to incredible success, and in 2008, she represented Australia in the Beijing Olympics! Since then, she has competed in numerous competitions at a national and international level, consistently making WA proud.
Olivia has overcome obstacles that many would let defeat them. Despite breaking her back in 2013, she went on to compete in the 2014 Commonwealth games. Told that she would never return to gymnastics, let alone compete at a national level, she responded, "You haven’t dealt with an elite athlete - especially a gymnast".
After years of overcoming challenges with gymnastics, her unwavering self-belief would not allow her to give up. Gymnastics has equipped Olivia with a range of incredible physical capabilities, strong self-belief and discipline in mastering skills. She was the only woman to reach the Australian Ninja Warrior Grand Final in 2019 and has achieved exceptional results in the years following.
Olivia is a testament to the resilience, strength and self-belief that gymnastics can help instil into its participants. She stands by the statement ‘self-belief is your strongest tool’ and has inspired many budding gymnasts to push the boundaries and achieve the unachievable.
With its expanse of physical, mental and social benefits, gymnastics is a sport with so much to offer. It’s great for people of all ages, starting from KinderGym all the way to adult and senior classes - it’s never too late to get started. If you, or your little one are interested in enrolling, find a Gymnastics WA member club near you!