Words by Erdington Local editorial team / Pics supplied by Aserie family
Castle Vale gymnast Zion Aserie (16) has won a series of high profile awards at the recent British Gymnastics Championships 2023, held in Liverpool at the end of March.
Aserie went on to further win the silver medal in the U18 All Around category, and to beat athletes from across the UK to become the U18 Rings Champion – winning the top spot after fierce competition from Leeds Gymnastics Club.
With his eyes firmly set on one day reaching the Olympic podiums, Zion Aserie trains alongside world class athletes including celebrated world champion athlete Joe Fraser – also from Birmingham.
But despite his staggering success at the recent Liverpool held competition, which sees top level athletes go head to head for the coveted medals, Zion Aserie was almost not able to compete due to an acute stress fracture to his lower spine.
Nine months ago, doctors told the young athlete he had to leave the gym and spend three months recuperating, for fear of causing permanent or lasting injury.
Having spent a decade training at City of Birmingham gymnastics club at the GMAC in Perry Barr, and with the Paris Summer Olympics scheduled for July/August 2024, the possibly permanent setback was a crushing blow to the young Castle Vale gymnast who had a promising future in the sport.
Zion Aserie is also a regular cast member of CBBC show Gym Stars, which follows the lives of some of the UK’s most promising young gymnasts.
Zion told: “I was devastated when my mum told me the results of my MRI scan.
“To think that it could have meant the end of my gymnastics career when all I’ve ever dreamed about is making it to the Olympics.”
But with the help and support of both his family and his coach, ex GB gymnast and double commonwealth champion Luke Folwell, Zion was eventually able to return to the gym – committing to 24 hours of rigorous training each week to stay at the very top of his game.
When the British Gymnastics Championships 2023 finally came round, Zion proved his fortitude by not only competing at event but taking home a bevy of medals and awards – including becoming the U18 Rings UK Champion.
Now back home in Birmingham, the young sports superstar has other challenges on the horizon – with his GCSE exams only a few weeks away.
His mum, Irene, told: “I am so proud of what Zion has achieved so far. My job is to ensure that he is able to work towards his dream of becoming an Olympic gymnast.
“He has what it takes, never makes excuses and is now reaping the rewards of his hard work. His resilience and determination are inspiring.”
Zion Aserie competing in the U18 Floor event at British Gymnastics Championships 2023
For more on the British Gymnastics Championships 2023 visit www.british-gymnastics.org