Mountain Districts Gymnastics began with a small group of energetic and enthusiastic kids and ran out of a high school gymnasium. In 1983, the group had outgrown that facility and the move was made to our current home in Michellan Crt, Bayswater – near the end of Stud Rd. Students are drawn from all over the Knox area, as well as further afield.
The Club was founded and managed by Mark and Heather McCarthy up until 1997, at which time it was taken over by Melanie Philp (Lethbridge).
Melanie Philp – Director
Melanie started coaching in 1989 on Monday afternoons with Heather McCarthy. From there she completed her National Coach Accreditation and later a degree in Human Movement Science. After finishing her studies, Melanie began working with Gymnastics Victoria, managing the Gym For All project. It was at this time that she also took over management of the gym.
Alongside building up the Club, Melanie’s work with Gymnastics Victoria also grew. In 2000, she moved into the position of State Event Director. For three years this involved working to make events for young gymnasts across the State a rewarding experience, where not just the winners had all the fun.
A leadership grant in 2003, with support from Gymnastics Victoria, assisted her to travel to the 2003 World Championships in California, USA. This amazing experience showed that the next step was not too big to take and helped Melanie to form more specific goals.
The hard work at Gymnastics Victoria paid off with a job offer at the end of 2004 from the Commonwealth Games Office. As Event Co-ordinator for gymnastics, she worked in a much more corporate environment. It was a fantastic opportunity to prove herself to the likes of Larry Sengstock and Noeleen Dix.
Currently Melanie divides her time between Mountain Districts Gymnastics and raising her young son – and sometimes does both at the same time!
The secret to our Club’s success is simple – our coaches. Our coaching team is developed through our assistant coach program, so the excitement and fun of gymnastics is passed on by the people that care about our Club the most. They know our Club because they made it and they are passionate about passing on what has been a great experience for them. Over the years, the importance of our assistant coach program has been proven again and again. This is where our club spirit is developed.
Being involved in our assistant coaching program develops important life skills naturally. Communication skills, leadership qualities, patience and adaptability develop easily in an environment that is comfortable and in which these trainees have confidence. These are qualities that future employers are looking for!
So, the motto for the coaching team at Mountain Districts is:
“start here, go anywhere”