About Sapphire

Sapphire School of gymnastics was started by Colin Green in 1976 in Tudor school and later moved to the Hemel Hempstead sports centre. Colin sadly died in 1992 and Sally Echlin has been the club leader ever since.

Sapphire is situated in Hemel Hempstead in the county of Hertfordshire which is twenty miles from central London. In 1995, the Eastern region Sports Council together with the local borough council grant-aided funding for a purpose-built gymnasium on the side of the Sports Centre and the club moved in, with much excitement, in June 1996.

Since the new gym opened, the changes are tremendous. The club now caters for boys and girls and there are three girls and three boys in the National squad in 2004. One girl has represented Great Britain in two international competitions in 2004.

The club currently has 41 gymnasts working in its elite squads and over 1000 in the recreational classes. The recreational classes act as a feeder system for the elite squads when the children are ready for more advanced coaching.

The young recreational gymnasts that start with the club are encouraged simply to enjoy the use of the equipment that we have and to work their way through the Sapphire badge system. As they become more skilled, the children are allowed to increase their hours in the gym to improve further their work if they wish but they do not have to as the child who only wishes to participate for the exercise is also most welcome. There is also a disability group which trains once a week with our special needs coach and uses balls and soft play equipment to help improve their co-ordination and balance.

Sapphire also provides sessions for adults and the gym is available for parties at the week-end and the details are on the classes' page.

There are over forty coaches employed at Sapphire, five of these are full-time and the rest are employed on a sessional basis. Many of the coaches are former gymnasts and are both highly skilled and dedicated and more information about them can be found in our coaches' section.

To contact Sapphire you may telephone Annie Price, the manager, on 01442 230077 or e-mail to contact@sapphiregymnastics.co.uk or you can complete an online enrolment form from the tabs on the right of the home page.

Gymnastic Classes at Sapphire