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Calgary gymnast tumbles to back-to-back national titles

Click to play video: 'Calgary gymnast shines on national stage' Calgary gymnast shines on national stage
WATCH ABOVE: Calgarian Madison Tansowny won her first national title in 2018 — then she had to prove it wasn’t a fluke. Cami Kepke has more. – Jun 10, 2019

A fall from a balance beam can bruise your body and your pride.

Still, Madison Tansowny’s mother thought it was a safer bet than the tricks her daughter was up to at the age of five.

“My mom caught me doing cartwheels and skills on the railing of our deck,” Tansowny explained. “It was like a 10-foot drop, so she just put me in gymnastics — safer environment for sure.”

Ten years later, she’s competing at the highest level of Junior Olympic gymnastics, a demanding sport with a language of its own.

READ MORE: Sherwood Park gymnastics club attempts to set Guinness World Record

“I do a double-pike, two flips in a pike position, a double-tuck and a one-and-a-half punch-front layout,” Tansowny said.

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The tiny athlete has proven she’s capable of putting up big scores.

Inspired by fellow Calgary Gymnastics Centre athlete Brittany Rogers, a two-time Olympian, the 15-year-old has tumbled her way into the big leagues.

“She just has this natural ability to jump high and spin fast and she has a lot of confidence in that,” coach Janna Ball said.

“What she’s proven over the past couple of years is that she’s capable of delivering clutch performances.”

Tansowny burst onto the Canadian gymnastics scene with a surprise win on the floor at the national championship in 2018.

“It was my first ever nationals,” Tansowny said. “I’d never even competed in that kind of environment before.”

She proved she could win. Now she had to prove it wasn’t a fluke.

Tansowny helped Team Alberta to a bronze medal at the 2019 Canada Winter Games in Red Deer as her next competitive season got underway.

READ MORE: Battle of the sisters: big rivalry heats up at international gymnastics competition in Calgary

By the time she returned to nationals in late May, the pressure was on. Tansowny moved up to an older category, meaning she’d be competing against gymnasts as old as 20.

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“She just put it together — again,” Ball recalled. “It was unbelievable.

“It was unquestionable that it was the best routine of the day. There were great routines, but nobody came close.”

Only two weeks after her second straight national title, she’s already planning to up her game for next season and prepare to start the real fight for her ultimate goal, an NCAA scholarship.

“That’s basically what I’ve been working for for the past 10 years,” Tansowney said. “It would just mean so much to me.”

“It’s a big deal,” Ball added. “It’s really hard. There’s so many kids that do this sport, there’s so many in the [United] States that are vying for very few spots.”

It won’t be easy, especially as Tansowney nurses a broken ankle, but she and her coaches are confident it’s another accolade within reach.

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