ABOUT Olivia Raymond

2016

Olivia Raymond

Hometown:
Wayne, Pennsylvania

Age:
15

Gym:
North Stars Gymnastics Academy
Boonton, New Jersey

Qualifying Meet:
Star Struck Invitational

            Bio

Q: Do you have a nickname?
A:
Liv.

Q: Where do you live?
A:
I live in Montville, N.J., during the week for training and Wayne, Pa., on the weekends.

Q: When and why did you first become interested in gymnastics?
A:
My mom took me to the 2008 Olympic Trials in Philadelphia, and I fell in love with gymnastics. I was 8 years old, and I loved watching Nastia Liukin and Chellsie Memmel.

Q: Do you have any good/funny memories from when you first started taking gymnastics classes?
A:
I started gymnastics at 8 years old, which is pretty late for gymnastics. I remember that I was always climbing on the rope. I never wanted to leave the gym.

Q: When did you decide you wanted to compete?
A:
Since I started at such a late age, I started competing right away at Level 5. I really looked up to the older girls competing for Level 8 and 9, and I wanted to be a high-level gymnast.

Q: What is your training regimen?
A:
I train about 30 hours a week.

Q: What is your favorite event?
A:
Bars and floor are my favorite events. I love swinging on bars, and I love to dance and show off my personality during my floor routines

Q: What is your favorite skill?
A:
My favorite skill is a piked Jaeger. I love swinging, getting big amplitude and the feeling right when you catch the bar

Q: What music do you use for your floor routine?
A:
Once in a Lifetime.

Q: Who is your favorite gymnast or who is your “idol”?
A:
Nastia Liukin has been my idol since I was very young. I actually trained at WOGA for a brief period so going to the Nastia Cup now is so surreal. I have a picture with her from when I was 9 years old.

Q: How have you grown as a gymnast during your career, both skill wise and mentally?
A:
I have learned how to set goals and achieve them. Gymnastics makes you mentally strong, so you can push through struggles to be successful.

Q: How has gymnastics helped you as a person?
A:
Gymnastics helped me learn so many different life skills like how to set goals and achieve them. If you set goals and work hard, everything will pay off in the end.

Q: If you had to select one life-lesson that gymnastics has taught you, what would it be?
A:
It taught me how to face adversity and approach difficulties in life. There will be struggles in life, and I’ve learned from gymnastics that I can push through it and come out a better person.

Q: What are your biggest accomplishments or best memories in your career?
A:
In 2013, placed third all-around at Level 9 Eastern Championships. I qualified to Junior Olympic Nationals the next year [2014], but I wasn’t able to compete due to injuries. Last year, I placed first at State, and that was a big accomplishment.

My best memory was actually at the Star Struck Invitational where I got my first 38.00 [all-around score], and I qualified to the Nastia Liukin Cup. It was great to be surrounded by my teammates, people who care about me and who were so excited for me

Q: What grade are you in school, and where do you go to school?
A:
I’m a sophomore, and I’m currently homeschooled.

Q: Do you want to compete in collegiate gymnastics?
A:
I committed to the University of Arkansas. A lot of North Star gymnasts have gone there, and the coaches are all so nice and so genuine. The gym’s facilities are amazing, and the school itself is amazing.

Q: What are your favorite subjects, etc.?
A:
I like writing and English.

Q: Do you know what you want to study in college?
A:
I want to study journalism so that I can be a photographic journalist. When I was little, I always read National Geographic, and I wanted to be the one taking those amazing pictures of wildlife and writing these amazing stories on them.

Q: What are your goals for the future, both as an athlete and after you are finished competing?
A:
I want to qualify to the Junior Olympic National Team this year. After gymnastics, I want to get a career at a big magazine like The New York Times or National Geographic – That would be amazing.

Q: When you’re not in the gym, how do you enjoy spending your time?
A:
I love taking photos, leaning new makeup techniques and watching TV. I love NCIS, Gilmore Girls and Hawaii Five-0.

Q: What is your favorite food?
A:
Chocolate and Japanese food.

Q: What is your favorite movie?
A:
Soul Surfer because its so inspirational.

Q: What is your favorite book?
A:
I love the Pretty Little Liars series.

Q: What is your favorite music group?
A:
One Direction and Alessia Cara.

Q: Are any of your family members current or former athletes?
A:
My Uncle was a professional golfer and my siblings played tennis.

Q: Do you have any competition rituals?
A:
I always use the same hair tie for competitions, and I always do my make up the same.

Q: What’s on your iPod right now?
A:
Rhianna’s new album and a lot of One Direction.

Q: If you had to pick 3 words to describe yourself as a gymnast, what are they?
A:
Hard-working, passionate and motivated.

Q: What 3 words describe you as a person, not the gymnast?
A:
Creative, determined and perfectionist.