We started off with 1 trampoline and 3 participants.
Late in 2011 with the support of Tenterden Leisure Centre, we began running recreational trampoline sessions for the centre. After a very short time we took over all the sessions from the Leisure Centre to create the club, which is when DHARMA gym for all was born.
Dharma Gym for All was founded in February 2012 where we had 3 high level athletes and a vision to grow. Within a few months of training some of our recreational participants started to compete at club level. Despite this feeling world’s away from the high level Kameron, Jodi and Phil competed at, it was proof the vision was coming true.
To our surprise, within a year or two we had young athletes in club, county, regional and national events, with youngsters still coming through and starting up.
As the club grew and the gymnasts were progressing extremely well, we had to increase the hours of training. Tenterden Leisure Centre were unable to facilitate us with our growth due to the multiple activities they host, therefore we had to find a second home.
Luckily we were able to secure 2 evenings at Maidstone Leisure Centre. However, this threw up a different challenge in that the Maidstone Leisure Centre only had 2 recreational level trampolines, which didn’t suit all of our performers.
Subsequently, we applied to Sport England for some funding with a fantastic result, leading us to get an older trampoline and a second hand competition trampoline. This funding was complimented by support from sported, as we had one of the first ADHD projects linked with them. This helped us get up on our feet for our second home.
Unfortunately we soon found ourselves out of a home at Tenterden Leisure Centre which was quite a worrying time, as we didn’t want to let the children / young people down.
Thankfully we managed to find a new home at Homewood school, and with the support/funding we had been given from both sported and Sport England we were able to purchase the kit we needed to move out from the Tenterden Leisure Centre and set up fresh in Homewood school.
As we continued to grow we were becoming short of kit, so we decided to put on a show and a 24 hour bounce to help raise some funds to help us move forward by purchasing the most up to date competition kit.
We were very proud and pleased to have Helen Grant, the minster of sport at the time, come and visit us on our journey through the long 24 hours. The 24 hours was split between our 2 venues, Maidstone Leisure Centre and Homewood school, and we had the pleasure to see her at the Maidstone venue.
In that short space of time, we had grown to accommodate more than 120 members ranging from recreational level through to competitive club, regional, national and international competitors. Although the club is young, the coaching team has gained a wealth of experience over many years, including working with some of the country’s finest athletes at world and Olympic level.
To find out more information on what we are up to today have a look at our about page.