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September 26, 2013

Haverhill's own national champ

Local woman excels in gymnastics

Haverhill has a new champion.

Gina Paulhus, 32, is the current national gymnastics champion on vault, bars, beam, and the all-around for women ages 18 and over.

She recently traveled to Detroit to compete in the AAU Junior Olympics Games in the Ladies Level 8 Division.

Paulhus competed in the four women’s apparatus, winning the all-around competition for the overall title and placing second in the floor exercise.

”I’ve been training all year for this event, and to have my best performance to date was a tremendous cap to a stellar season,” Paulhus said.

At the event in Detroit, Paulhus placed first on vault with an 8.55 score out of a possible 10, first on bars with an 8.5, first on beam with an 8.6 and second on floor with a 9.1. She took first place in the all-around competition with a 34.75.

She earned her first national title last year when she traveled to traveled to Geneva, Ohio, for the AAU Ladies Division National Championships.

There, she competed in the vault, uneven bars, balance beam, and floor exercise events and won first place, becoming the ladies national champion on the floor exercise. She took third-place in the vault, uneven bars, balance beam, and the all-around competition.

To qualify for the Olympics, Paulhus would have to increase the level of difficulty of her routine.

”After level eight, you become a level nine, and a level 10, then the Olympic level,” she said. “So to go to the Olympics, I would have to increase in level.”

”I am probably going to level nine next year,” she said.

Paulhus is president of Home Bodies, a company that provides personal trainers to clients. She travels to the homes of her clients to work with them. She trains in Portsmouth, N.H., at Atlantic Gymnastics and is coached by Matthew Yellis, Cori Cunningham and Allison Brisson.

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