Hopewell Valley Central High School student, Annalise Newman-Achee, will be competing at the 2022 World Gymnastic Championships this October in Liverpool, UK. At this prestigious event, the world’s greatest gymnasts get their first chance to qualify for the 2024 Olympic Games.
Newman-Achee will be one of 169 gymnasts from around the world competing in the Women’s Artistic Gymnastics (WAG). Of these 169 gymnasts, 120 are part of a qualifying national team. The remaining 49 gymnasts are all individuals representing their individual federations, 11 of whom qualified at the Pan American Championships, including Annalise, who proudly represents her father’s homeland of Trinidad and Tobago.
Newman-Achee was originally born and raised in a brownstone in Bedford–Stuyvesant, Brooklyn until the middle of the pandemic when her former gym was no longer able to accommodate her needs. This prompted Newman-Achee and her family to move to Hopewell Township for her and her younger sister, Lirit, to continue their high-level gymnastics training at Arena Gymnastics at Gymland School of Gymnastics in Hamilton, N.J., under Coaches Ann and Valdi Kolasa.
To accommodate her rigorous training, Newman-Achee attends HVCHS on a half-day schedule, training in the afternoon five days per week and Saturday mornings during the school year. To keep up with her studies, Annalise has also completed other necessary coursework via an online school.
Newman-Achee’s father, Lyndon Achee was born and raised in Trinidad and Tobago, and grew up in St. James, just outside Port of Spain, Trinidad. He is a professional percussionist, and plays the steel drum. Annalise’s father and uncle wrote the music for her current floor routine. In the music, the steel drum and drums of African percussion rhythms are featured to honor Trinidad, Wendy Newman, Newman-Achee’s mother, explained to MercerMe.
“She is so proud to do this! The community is so proud to have Annalise representing their vibrant cultured country,” shared Newman.
The Trinidad Gymnastics Federation discovered Newman-Achee several years ago from a Trinidadian gymnast and coach living in the United States. Then, when Newman-Achee moved to Hopewell, her new coach made contact with Trinidad Gymnastic Federation to discuss the possibilities of Newman-Achee representing her father’s country in competitions. Since her father is a citizen of Trinidad, his children are automatically granted citizenship as well.
Beyond this competition, Newman-Achee’s family shares that she verbally accepted a four-year full gymnastics athletic scholarship to compete at CalBerkeley starting fall of 2023.
“We are so exceptionally proud to announce that Annalise is headed to Worlds! Keep on dreaming big, Tiger!”