The 13-year-old’s latest achievement was winning gold in the all around junior international category at the Australian Club Championships last month.
The championships in Geelong followed a trip to Russia where Aya placed second on bars and beam and third on vault and all around.
The St Mary’s Anglican Girls School student has been a gymnast for eight years after a Western Australian Institute of Sport (WAIS) talent scout saw her potential at five-and-a-half years old. Since becoming a WAIS athlete, Aya’s life has revolved around gymnastics.
‘I train 34 hours a week, five morning trainings and five afternoon trainings,’ she said.
‘I train the same amount of hours during school holidays.’
Not only has Aya succeeded in gymnastics, she has achieved academically by winning a scholarship to study at the Karrinyup all-girls school. ‘For school, my teachers are very understanding of my busy schedule and they adjust my workload to help balance my gymnastics and my study,’ Aya said.
‘I have a very limited social life.’
For Aya, the sacrifice to train to become an Olympic gymnast has been worth it.
‘I love the feeling of making a skill perfect, especially if it has taken a while to master,’ she said.
‘I hope to go to the Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, where I am aiming for a gold medal.
‘I would also like to go to the 2018 Commonwealth Games and World Championships.’