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Hard Work Ahead for Hopfner-Hibbs
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In the latest in IG Online's series of holiday features, 2006 world balance beam bronze medalist Elyse Hopfner-Hibbs (Canada) shares her new years resolutions.
Elyse Hopfner-Hibbs

Hopfner-Hibbs, the first Canadian woman to win a world championships medal, has gymnastics-related resolutions for 2007.

"My New Year's resolution is to continue working hard in the gym, and work on the 'performance' factor of my gymnastics," she said.

Hopfner-Hibbs, who is enjoying a nine-day training break for the holidays, celebrated Christmas Eve with her mother's side of the family.

"We all get together and have a gift exchange and a big Christmas dinner," she said. "This is actually my favorite day of the entire year!"

The family festivities continued on Christmas Day, Hopfner-Hibbs said. "We open gifts and have a big Christmas breakfast at my house. This is only with my immediate family. In the afternoon, my sister and I go to my dad's house for another Christmas celebration!"

In addition to her Worlds medal, the 17-year-old Hopfner-Hibbs had a memorable competitive year in 2006. At the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, she finished second all-around and first on uneven bars and balance beam. At the Pacific Alliance Championships in Honolulu, she was fourth all-around and third on balance beam and floor exercise. Hopfner-Hibbs also placed first all around at the Canadian Championships.

Earlier this month, Hopfner-Hibbs finished fifth on balance beam at the World Cup Final in Sao Paulo.

Hopfner-Hibbs, who trains at Sport Seneca in Toronto under coaches Carol-Angela Orchard, Brian McVey and Lawson Hamer, said her favorite Christmas tradition is getting together with her family.

"We have so much fun together," she said. "Because I travel so much for gymnastics, I don't get to see them very often, so I really enjoy the time I get to spend with them."

Elyse Hopfner-Hibbs is featured in the following issues of International Gymnast magazine:

December 2006 World Championships special issue
June 2006: Pacific Alliance Championships coverage
May 2006: Commonwealth Games coverage
March 2006: "One Step Towards 2008" (short profile)

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