Trinidadian gymnast Thema Williams opens gym for children

By Sports Desk November 20, 2022
Thema Williams Thema Williams

Former Trinidad and Tobago gymnast Thema Williams has opened a gym intended to be a safe space for all-rounded childhood athletic development.

The talented gymnast said her aim is to “create initiatives that foster teamwork through sport and culture.”

“We envision an environment in sport built on the pillars of accountability, equity, integrity, knowledge and transparency,” she in an interview with T&T newspaper Newsday.

“I started by offering private gymnastics classes during the pandemic, and word quickly spread throughout a network of reputable people. Before I knew it, I had five clients weekly.”

She has poured a lot of sweat into making her idea into reality even making her own equipment. She revealed that she made a balance beam, her first, from wood from her home storage unit and used foam and glue to fashion mats.

The demand for her teaching was so great that she had more than 100 students enrolled by the end of 2021, which then prompted her decision to open a gym.

In 2018, Williams won a court battle against the Trinidad and Tobago Gymnastics Federation that was deemed to have discriminated against the gymnast when they withdrew her from the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio, Brazil. In her place, the TTGF selected Canadian-born gymnast Marisa Dick.

She was awarded damages amounting to more than $TT200,000. However, the TTGF did not turn over the cash until a few weeks ago when a high court judge ordered Republic Bank where the gymnastics federation held an account, to cut a cheque for more than $230,000 to pay the athlete.

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