History

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Yotala Gymnastics is a club of 180 children. It is situated in the South West region of Sydney NSW, Australia. The children's ages range from 2 to 25 years.
The club colours are purple, tangerine, green, pink and black.

The club promotes sport involvement in different areas- Rhythmic Gymnastics, Boys and Girls Gymnastics, Special Olympics, School's program, Elite Training, General Gymnastics and Team Gymnastics.

The club has been competing for over 25 years. In that time, many gymnasts have represented the region or club in levels 1 to 10. They are State, National and International representatives. We provide opportunities for suitably qualified gymnasts to compete internationally.

The aim of the club is to help children strive for excellence in their chosen sport.

To achieve this aim the club trains the children to compete at the highest level according to their age and ability.
The club is community based with 10
coaches
and 4 judges.
The parents play an integral part in supporting the club. They carry some of the administrative functions associated with the smooth running of the club.

The Beginnings
(Brackets after names indicate where the person is involved in the sport now)
1978 Richard went to a school sport inservice at Albury. Gymnastics was one of the components.

1979 He started a gymnastics group after school at Mulwala PS with 2 girls, a mini tramp and high jump crash mat. The group did one display at the local Anglican Church fete. Helen and Mathew would come to watch training after school. Mathew was fascinated and wanted to join in at 3 years old.

1980 The family moved to Ingleburn. Mathew still wanted to do gymnastics so we found Ingleburn Youth Club trained that in the Community room next to the library. Mathew was too young to "officially" train but joined in as Richard had volunteered to help with coaching. Joan Murray was Club President and the first perpetual trophy is named in her honour. "EJ Murray trophy for dedication and commitment to Helping Others". This is our most prestigious trophy as it focuses on others not individual achievement.

1981 Rhythmics (Rhythmic Sportiv Gymnastics '''RSG''') started in Campbelltown at Airds Activity Centre. Macquarie Fields Indoor Sporting Complex (MFISC) was completed with donations from medical entrepreneur Jeffrey Edelstein. Gymnastics moved to Ingleburn RSL Youth club under a new committee.

1982 Kerrie Mancini (gymnast - now coach for Splitz QLD) moved to Macquarie Fields Indoor Sporting Complex to train. Mathew was training and Molly saw Kerrie in the gym and asked if she could do it too.

1983 Helen became Coach and Judge under the Elite code. Molly and the other girls competed at State Titles at Cootamundra. The girls wore brown leotards with lime green piping across the chest. The Rhythmics was part of Ingleburn RSL Youth club. Beth Robb (Avanti Coach) competed for us.
The club competed as Ingleburn RSL for the next ?? years. In 198? Ingleburn RSL Club cut a deal with Ingleburn high school to use its hall and facilites. The Rhythmics decided to stay at Macquarie Fields and compete as MFISC. This lasted until 1993.

In 1993 Helen and Virginia Elliot (now RG Tech committee) moved to Macquarie Fields High School and became Macquarie Fields RSG Club.This gave us independence from a managing organisation but the hall wasn't suitable for regular training. There were 50 girls in the club. We competed in the inaugural Classic Clubs multiples competition in Adelaide. At the end of the year we looked for an alternative venue.
Leumeah High School
1994 Richard and Helen bought 2nd hand mats from Abbotsleigh School to start the club. A parent committee was formed to manage the club affairs. Lisa Caton (ex PLC Croydon coach) designed the club logo. The club name was changed to Yotala. Helen found the name on a world music cd. Yotala is a village in Bolivia and had an annual music festival so the name seemed appropriate. We liked the name because it was unique, different and not related a geographical area. The club colours were decided - purple tangerine and black. The style of jacket was designed to keep the girls warm at competition. The colour was an excellent choice as our girls always stood out in a crowd.
Helen started a gymnastics program at Claymore Public School. Sue - our coach :-) brought her daughters to the classes. The school program provided the starting point and the foundation for our future developmental programs for early childhood and Special Ed.

1997 Helen took a team of girls to compete in Europe.
1999 Yotala won the one and only Sydney Cup. This was a team competition for Rhythmic Gymnastics. Life at Leumeah was a busy round of unlocking the security gates, getting all the mats out of the storeroom and setting up for the lesson and then packing up everything before going home. The club hosted many competitions. The winter wind blew through the broken louvres and the sparrows flew around the gym in the spring. The club was asked to organise the Classic Clubs competition when Sydney hosted it. The competition was held in the Lidcombe Netball centre. The committee decorated the centre with bunting and streamers. We did nearly everything for the competition except organise the canteen. That was the year the school hall was set on fire. The school remodelled part of the girl's toilets and provided a secure lockable storeroom for us.
Members of the club have been involved in all levels of rhythmics in NSW. We have organised, set up, run, scored and competed at local, regional, State, National and International competitions.
2005 The club entered and competed in the Arafura Games. This is an international competition held every two years. The team had a fantastic time.
2006 The hall at Leumeah was inspected and deemed unfit for use until it was completely renovated. This decision forced us to look for another venue.
A place of our own
Helen looked at units to set up in. It was decided to rent a unit across the road from Minto Station. The lease was signed but it turned out that one of the 3 owners refused to sign the lease as he wanted a quick sale (the unit remained empty for the next 5 years). The real estate agent found us another unit on the Thursday, the lease was signed on Friday, we laid 700 square metres of floor on the Monday and started classes on the Tuesday. After 6 months it was clear that this was a great move for the club. We were blessed with donations of equipment and furniture to set up. The gym was big enough to hold competitions.
Macarthur Special Olympics rhythmics joined us and we looked at other areas of gymnastics to expand into.We had the official opening in October with lots of old friends in attendance. As part of our ongoing development, we organised Waratah Cup. This was a multi level competition for teams of 10 girls and included a Special O section. Yotala Inverell was set up with Debbie and Peter and incorporated into the club. Helen returned to Bulgaria with 2 girls for elite training. Presentation Night was a great success with General, Rhythmic, Special O and Recreation groups represented.
2007 In January a coaching clinic was organised for girls.
2008 Molly took a team to compete at LA Lights. This is an international competition in Los Angeles USA.
2009 Molly takes up coaching pole dancers in her spare time. There is now a move called "The Molly" in the dancer's repertoire.
2010 Increases in rent forced us to look for smaller premises. We looked at Swaffham Rd gym and decided it was adequate for our needs. We moved in during the October school holidays. This involved lifting the floating floor and relaying it in the new gym.
2011 Due to an number of changes in the local gymnastics community, it was decided to expand our program in to WG. The local Special Needs school bring their students for gym classes. Rebecca competed for Australia in Special Olympics World games in Athens. We compete 2 Special O girls in normal stream competition. Helen ran education session at GymNSW for Inclusions (Special Needs involvement in Gymnastics)
2012 Yotala competes WG at Regional competitions and State titles. We run our first Special O competition for MG WG and RG. Helen continues to promote Inclusions in Gymnastics. She is involved in a Gymnastics Australia working group developing the Coaching and Judging pathways for the next 4 years. Our school's program continued to develop both in schools and in gym. We were fortunate to have 13 lineal metres of wall mirror donated and installed.
2013 This was a year of consolidation and growth. All programs continued to develop. Unfortunately, there was a flood in the gym when downpipes were blocked. This meant an urgent  clean up as well as removing all the floating timber floor. It was decided to lay carpet with double underlay. This was laid and proved very good for training. A week after laying the carpet, we opened negotiations to move to Minto PCYC. It was decided to move so it was necessary to lift all 160square metres of carpet that was glued to the floor. This required separating the carpet from the floor with scrapers and then rolling the mats. The 13 m long strips were cut in half to allow easier man handling. We moved out of the gym and into Minto over Christmas break.

2014 The set up in Minto PCYC was a slow process due to getting equipment set up in the best places in the gym.

2015 was another consolidation year in the gym. One of the highlights of the year was Emma competing at Special O world games in Los Angeles. She was one of three gymnasts representing at these games.

2016 very successful adding new Team Gym, Display and Acro programs. Our numbers grew to over 300. Melinda took a team to China for a successful Asian Games. We were nominated for numerous awards in 2016.

PCYC decided not to renew our contract for 2017. So watch this space for an update.