Glenrothes club celebrates 40th anniversary

Sandra Murdoch, right, and one of her gymnastics classes.
Sandra Murdoch, right, and one of her gymnastics classes.

A gymnastics club which has taught thousands of local children how to roll and cartwheel is celebrating its 40th anniversary this month.

The Lomond Centre Gymnastics Club was set up in August 1978 by Sandra Murdoch, who wanted a space for her young daughter to practice her routines.

Eight years later, her daughter, also Sandra Murdoch, took over the coaching of the club, aged just 16.

Since then she has helped hundreds of kids get their start in gymnastics.

“I’m proud of reaching 40,” said Sandra. “I can’t believe it has been four decades. I can remember the new wood smell when he first moved into the Lomond Centre. There are probably thousands of children who I have taught. There are so many kids who now say to me ‘you taught my mum’. I was recently in Turkey and bumped into someone who I used to teach.”

Sandra was a champion gymnast back in the late 1970s and early 1980s, making the under-10 Scotland squad, competing in around 30 international tournaments, and even winning an award at the 1986 Scottish Championships.

But her Lomond Centre group is purely recreational, allowing the kids to have fun without the pressure of competition. Sandra has also formed a close bond with some of them over the years.

“Some of the kids I’ve taught are like family now”, Sandra added. “It’s more than just teaching them.”