Fifteen-year-old Trisha Nicole Canayan Nayao, a Grade 9 student of Don Bosco High School in Poblacion South, Lagawe, Ifugao, dominated the gymnastics event of the Cordillera Administrative Region Athletic Association (CARAA) 2018 Meet held in Abra last February.
Gymnastics in Ifugao was not as popular as it is today, but through the unwavering commitment and dedication of sports coordinators from the Provincial Government and Schools Division Office of Ifugao, gymnastics evolved into a dynamic and interesting sport which attracted budding athletes. So much so that it contributed the greatest number of medals for the province of Ifugao in the recently concluded Regional Meet. Out of the 36 golds it reaped, 16 were from gymnastics, three of which were garnered by Trisha.
Trisha brought home a total of six medals for rhythmic gymnastics – three golds for the ball, team championship, and individual all-around, and three silvers for hoop, rope, and clubs.
Her journey in gymnastics began when she was in Grade 1. She witnessed a routine and was inspired by the graceful and expressive movements of the gymnasts. In Grade 3, she started stretching exercises, and the rest, they say, is history.
But what motivates her to become the best gymnast she could be is her family. They are the ones who cheer for her and encourage her to keep on fighting no matter the outcome. Even if they are busy with their jobs and studies, they will always find time to watch and support her during competitions and for that, she is eternally grateful.
To honor her family’s sacrifices, Trisha always goes the extra mile whether in academics or sports. She is consistently included in the honor roll. Even when in pain during rehearsals, she gets through with it, and even manages to be her funny self despite the pressure.
“She knows that she just needs to stay focused and maintain discipline as part of developing and refining her attitude towards what she must achieve,” her coach, Rhodora Buhong, shared.
Because of her hectic training schedules, she misses most school activities, and her academic performance is inevitably put at risk. But Trisha exerts increased efforts to maintain her status.
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Another admirable trait of Trisha is her faith in God.
“He died for us, so I play for Him,” Trisha enthused, acknowledging that Jesus died on the cross for her cause.
Her love for her family, the sports, and the Lord Almighty – all of these fuels this young gymnast’s will and desire to dance through life’s rhythms.