From the Olympics sidelines to centre stage for Peterborough gymnast Jake Jarman

Jake Jarman in vault action at the British Championships earlier this year. Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images.Jake Jarman in vault action at the British Championships earlier this year. Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images.
Jake Jarman in vault action at the British Championships earlier this year. Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images.
​Peterborough-based gymnast Jake Jarman is ready to take centre stage at the Olympics after studying intently from the sidelines in Tokyo.

​Jarman became the first English male gymnast to win four golds at a single Commonwealth Games at Birmingham 2022 and will now compete on the biggest stage for the first time after securing selection for Team GB’s 13-strong gymnastics squad at Paris 2024.

The 22-year-old journeyed to Japan as a reserve three years ago and believes that experience accelerated his readiness for this summer’s Games.

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“That was definitely a stepping stone,” said Jarman. “I know what to expect in terms of training, what it takes mentally and physically, whereas if I didn't have that experience, I feel like I'd be a bit in the dark.

Jake Jarman. Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images.Jake Jarman. Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images.
Jake Jarman. Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images.

“I don't have to worry about what to expect because I’ve already got a general feel for things.”

Jarman’s status as a debutant fails to do justice to just how much he’s achieved this cycle. He has won eight European medals as well as gold and bronze at the World Championships.

He attributes his continued success to an evolving self-belief.

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“The Commonwealths was the first proper competition where I competed in front of a crowd that size and it was definitely a new experience back then,” said Jarman.

“The atmosphere can be quite nerve-wracking, but I feel like I use those nerves and I use that atmosphere to my own benefit.

“Since then, every time I compete, every time I put my hand up, I always tell myself just enjoy it, have fun and I visualise my routine right until I put my hand up.

“Those things have definitely helped me do well.”

In Paris, Jarman will benefit from Aldi’s ‘Nearest & Dearest’ programme, which helps maximise support and minimise potential distractions for athletes so that they can focus on their performance and make the most of the unique opportunity to compete on one of the world’s largest stages.

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Of the six men and seven women selected in Team GB’s artistic and trampoline squad, eight are Olympic debutants and five are returning Olympians, including triple gold medallist Max Whitlock.

“Team GB has proven itself as a serious medal contender in all three of gymnastics disciplines selected and it is fantastic to head to Paris with athletes who not only have Games experience, but experience of standing on that Olympic rostrum,” said GB Chef de Mission Mark England.

“I am sure all eight Olympic debutants in the team will lean on their experience this summer, and the team will make the nation proud.”

Whitlock will spearhead the men’s artistic team and will become the first gymnast to win four Olympic medals on the same apparatus if he adds to his two golds and a bronze on the pommel horse at Paris 2024.

Aldi are proud Official Partners of Team GB & ParalympicsGB, supporting all athletes through to Paris 2024