Rhythmic gymnastic starlet Hannah Martin has excelled in her first year as a senior, securing two British titles, a World Championships appearance and made a promising debut appearance for Team England at the Commonwealth Games, but she’s still hungry for more.
Entering her debut year on the senior circuit at the age of just 15 has injected Martin into the gymnastics spotlight following her stunning display in this year’s Aerobic & Rhythmic British Championships, where she clinched two golds in the hoop and ribbon disciplines, as well as a further three silvers in the all-around, ball and clubs.
Finishing 88th in the individual all-around competition at this month's Rhythmic World Championships in Sofia, Martin has made major strides in her first year in the professional ranks.
“It has been a big jump into my senior year, I have worked very hard with my coaches to up my difficulty and I’m so glad it’s paid off,” Martin explained, whose coach is former Team England gymnast Lynne Hutchison.
As well as her success in Telford, the 16-year-old gymnast from Hove was competing in her first competition since her impressive Commonwealth debut at the Gold Coast. Hardly looking a step out of place, Martin placed fifth in the ball final and 7th in the all-around following an admirable performance in the team event.
“The Commonwealth Games has been one of the most incredible adventures of my life,” she said. “Team England was super supportive, there was a whole team spurring us on, encouraging us, and making sure we were in peak condition for performance.”
“Performing on the Games stage was nothing like I had ever done before, the crowd was incredible! I put my heart out on the carpet on each performance, especially in the all-around final.”
Joining Martin in the Coomera Indoor Sports Centre as part of the Team England squad were Stephani Sherlock and Mimi-Isabella Cesar, both of whom had Commonwealth experience heading into the Gold Coast.
“They were both great teammates, I learnt so much from their wealth of experience,” Martin said of her teammates. “I was able to ask fundamental questions about the competition, the atmosphere, the pressure, their coping strategies. I feel their support really did help me perform my best at the competition.”
On top of her busy competition schedule, Martin will begin studying for her A-level qualifications this year at Shoreham Academy, and the gymnast has praised her new school for the support and patience they have shown while she’s away in Bulgaria. “I’ve been doing some schoolwork while I’ve been out here, and I’m looking forward to properly starting school once I get back.”