By Jan Drake Bakke

"March Madness--History of a Gymnast Part 9"

"Unicorn" Some days are unforgiving

Some are just plain forlorn

Some give us joy

Some are full of poem corn


Some days are waiting to be better

Some are great in the morn!

Some give us havoc

Until I met a Unicorn!


"March Madness 2019"


It's new and exciting

And love is in the air

Spring fever about to pounce

Revival is upon us everywhere! 


Step out into new discoveries and rejuvenations

Drink down revelations, epiphanies and inspirations

Walk into the sunlight

Skip under the moon's shining white!

Run to the blazing wave of energetic might

Dance into your dreams of titalating delight

It is March Madness of this beautiful year

Remember to laugh and cheer!

Always speak like over everything and in between

For this majestic 2019!


"March Springs"

March spring

Into action





Into Friendships



A kiss

On the lips



New love


More passion


The sun sings


March springs!



"A Tumbling Song--Spring"


Handstand to your heart's desire

Round off to your spirit's divine supplier

Dive cartwheel and fly higher

Ariel to your favorite spring songs that make you on fire!



"Are You Getting the Jist?--Beam"

Terrific tinsicas totally
Hippie handsprings hooray!
Wackie walkovers whoo hoo!
Dive cartwheels all day!
Very vaulty
Victorious valdez
Awesome ariels
Effortless and easy
Everyone sayz!
Leaps, splits and marching
Pushups, situps, pullups and arching
Back flips, front flips and a twist
Gymnastics a go go
Are you getting the jist?
Bars be a blast
Floor X was so fast
Vault was a rave
But beam was my fave!
At some of the gymnastics practices growing up during a span of time of maybe about a few weeks or longer my Coach Jan decided we needed even more discipline. It was something I really didn't need. I had extreme discipline at home already and this was for everything in general except when eating ice cream. There were no rules or stipulations on that particular experience. I loved ice cream most of my life. Until now I cannot eat much of it because of a sugar problem I have at present. I may of eaten too much of it through the years. Well, it was freedom for me! And for my whole family. I think most gymnasts too.  My father also took me out for our regular workouts on the side from my regular gym practices. I was also getting private workouts with Coach too. I had plenty of discipline.  I think this was meant for everyone to just get stronger in general. We had 3 to 4 days a week of workouts of two and a half hour to three hour increments and then in the summer it was daily for eight hours. We had alot of discipline. This was like a drill. Coach must of heard about this at one of his training clinics he use to go to and so he tried it on us. Or he just made it up and had us do it. Well, it wasn't easy for most and it couldnt be going too long. We all knew though that a competitor had to be prepared and this was a way to do it for strength building. Is what I am thinking Coach must of thought.  
Coach had us on releve! That is a dance move where the dancer rises to the tips of the toes!~ In this case it was the gymnast!~ LOL! He had us on releve for our entire work outs. As soon as we stepped into the gym we were to be on releve. Period! It was quite a strict drill but we all did the best we could. If one failed to stay on releve then they had to do immediate push ups up to fifty. Usually they did twenty five. So generally everyone kept that stance on relelve. The pushup regime wasn't that tough for this. It was this releve regime that was quite drastic for many of the gymnasts. We were normally flat footed as we walked thru the gym and to each station of designated equipment to work on. Not anymore. One had to be on their tip toes! Not only on the floor but also on the equipment as well! In other words one was on releve on the beam the entire time they practiced moves or did a routine. One was on releve practicing their floor X routine. This was tricky because you really couldn't be on tip toes doing tumbling moves but I think that was just known and but as long as you went from the mats to another station on releve you were good! 
Fortunately, I was strong enough to do this regime. To pull this off. Not too many of the gymnasts on our team really could do this and pull it off full out. It was very hard. I can see why not and do not blame them either.  I did however and that was that. This is not being a braggert either. It  is just showing that I had done more work outs and had more support with my Dad, Coach and  along with private ballet classes that was demanded of me. Everyone knew this I think. If they didn't that is fine. I am sharing it now. It was extreme for me the rigorous life and schedule I had. I should of been able to of handled that releve regime easily and I have to say I did. It was not hard for me. But I did feel very sorry for the others who could not keep up with it. There were many complaints to Coach by the gymnasts and their parents to have him stop this. So he did. It really didn't phase me. It was just more training to me. That I had to do and did. I wasn't liking it so much but knew I had to do it. If I didn't my father and coach would of been very angry. 
I will say I did gain new strength and improved beam moves from this drill. Normally,  what I did on flat foot were front and back walkovers on the beam. These were my regular moves I did with ease. I was working on one armed walkovers at the time. Doing the walkovers on releve was very enlightening for me because I gained new confidence with this. I was able to do the front walkover on tip toe and also Coach demanded that as I came out of the walkover to keep my front leg up  and not let it come down. It would stay at way above waist level while I was on releve. I could do this and it was very exciting for Coach. My dad was very pleased  too that I achieved this.  This move was done by a Russian Olympian and Coach wanted me to do it. So I did. It was a beautiful move to see. I was ecstatic that I achieved it. It was not so easy either. So I came away very happy and successful in this releve drill and regime Coach implemented on us. Others had been in tears and it was very sorrowful to see them so upset by this drill. I had though the extra training and strength for all of this and it was ok for me. I was set apart  but that was why I was in the Class I Elites group. We had to be extra strong and advanced. I think most of them pulled this off  too but not easily. It was very rough on them. This is why we with all of this training and discipline we had  achieved became the pioneers of girls and womens gymnastics for the city of Las Vegas and the state of Nevada. Coach's teaching tactic of an intense and uncomfortable drill paid off in the end. We became State and National Champions. (As I end this segment with tears I have to appreciate all that my Dad and Coach did for me and my team.)
Here are some spring poems for our March Madness of 2019.
"A Miracle To Behold"
Step out of your comfort zone
A time to grow
Take a chance
Give it a go!
New beginnings
Releasing the old
Dare to stretch beyond your norm
And take a breath
For a miracle to behold!
"Walk Your Peace"
Walk your peace
And flower power
into the future
T find your dreams
Don't stop
Until you reach them fully
Your life will be
Full of light beams!
"For a brighter future
Letting go of our fears
Can be a cure!"
"Divine Resonance--Dragon"
Divine Resonance
With unconditional patience
I wait
I see
I feel
I tell
From the fire within
From birth
That connects heaven to earth
Slay me
My Dragon
I surrender to what it will teach
With my Savior's presence
Divine resonance!
"Thoz Rose Colored Glasses"
Thoz rose colored glasses you look thru
Are there to cover any pain
To shadow and shame
To let go of any shame
To let go of any fears
To get over any blame!
Staying positive thru any change
And change of the game
Letting go of any failure
I am walking forward
Nothing is the same!
"For a brighter future
Change can be a cure!"
"A Brand New Day"
In our neck of the cactus
We are having some sun
Some good food
And having fun!
Many exciting opportunities
And events 
Coming our way
It's just beginning
A brand new day!
Happy March! Happy March Madness 2019!
Love, Jan