The Star Malaysia - Star2

Twirling her way to the top

- By MAJORIE CHIEW The Paper’s People is a weekly column which introduces Malaysia-based everyday folk, doing what they love. If you have any person to recommend, e-mail us at

AS A six-year-old, Edie Tan Jingni was mesmerised by rhythmic gymnastics when she saw her cousin practising her routines.

When the opportunit­y came, she herself gave it a try – and was hooked.

A year later, Tan, who studied in SJK (C) Subang in Shah Alam, Selangor, took up the sport. She was in the school’s gymnastic club and team from Year One to Year Four, after which she transferre­d to Sri KDU Primary School in Kota Damansara, Selangor.

From then onwards, her parents enrolled her into Total Gymnastiqu­e, a recreation­al and competitiv­e gymnastic centre in Petaling Jaya, Selangor. She goes for training four times a week, for three to five hours each time.

To-date, Tan, now 12, from Selangor, has won over 40 medals in gymnastics competitio­ns both locally and abroad (Taiwan and Thailand). She is dedicated to improving herself in rhythmic gymnastics, and competes in gymnastics competitio­ns whenever she can.

Rhythmic gymnastics combines elements of ballet, gymnastics, dance and apparatus manipulati­on. The gymnast has to manipulate one or two pieces of apparatus – rope, hoop, ball, clubs and ribbon – or demonstrat­e her dexterity freehand (without apparatus).

When she first got involved in rhythmic gymnastics, she said: “I enjoyed the ball routine and had fun. I am also excited by the patterns and the colours of the ribbon.”

Next month, she will be taking part in the 2nd Vitrigo Internatio­nal Cup 2018 (July 10-16) in Bukit Kiara, Kuala Lumpur, which is organised by FMG Gymnastics Club, a non-profit and non-government­al gymnastics organisati­on under the Sports Commission of Malaysia. In August, she will represent her gym centre, Total Gymnastiqu­e, for the 1st Asia Pacific Rhythmic Gymnastics Internatio­nal Tournament (Aug 9-13) in Hong Kong.

Beside this sport, she also loves swimming and cycling.

She goes for swimming classes in school and at a nearby golf club once a month.

Sometimes, Tan loves cycling with her older siblings Cheryl, 21, and brother Sean, 24, in the house compound or nearby park. Tan also enjoys baking and cooking.

In sports, injuries are quite the norm. She said: “When I was nine, I had a sprained ankle. However, I suffer from muscle pain from time to time. The longest time I was out of action was due to an ankle injury, about two weeks.”

But this junior level gymnast plans to go on training and competing in rhythmic gymnastics until the senior level. (A gymnast who is 16 years old and above and who has completed Grade 5 in rhythmic gymnastics is categorise­d under the senior level.)

Last year, Tan joined the Malaysian Aesthetic Group Gymnastics Associatio­n (Magga) and in May last year, her team won gold at the Total Gym Internatio­nal Tournament in Cyberjaya. Gymnastics teams from 13 countries, including Malaysia, took part in the event.

Tan said: “I love rhythmic gymnastics because I’m impressed with what I can do. Moreover, my coach told me that I have the potential to go further and be a better gymnast.”

 ?? — MIKI ONG ?? Edie Tan Jingni, 12, has won over 40 medals in gymnastics competitio­ns both locally and abroad.
— MIKI ONG Edie Tan Jingni, 12, has won over 40 medals in gymnastics competitio­ns both locally and abroad.

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