|— Gymnast —|
|Full name||Craig Heap|
|Country represented|| United Kingdom
10 July 1973 |
|Discipline||Men's artistic gymnastics|
Craig Heap (born in Burnley, Lancashire, England) is a retired Commonwealth Games Gold medal winning gymnast who has represented England over 100 times in various international gymnastic competitions, including at the 2000 Summer Olympics. He has been the English and British champion as well as the captain on many occasions.
Heap began as a gymnast when he was just nine years old after his parents took him to classes out of simple desperation as he was very hyperactive as a child, in an interview with the BBC he stated;
I was a bit of a tearaway as a kid, always jumping over the sofas and racing around the yard. My sister Nicola used to go to gym classes and one day my mum said: 'Instead of leaping over the furniture, get yourself down to the gym with your sister.
After progressing as a junior gymnast Heap eventually became professional and trained full-time though he struggled for money as the grants from Sport England were not vast sums of money nor was much money generated through sponsorship. A series of injuries only helped to exacerbate his financial shortfalls as long periods out meant even less money. Heap had many such injuries throughout his career, undergoing five operations on his left elbow, surgery to both shoulders, calves, shins, an ankle and a wrist. Since retiring from gymnastics Heap has taken a more media related role, appearing on Blue Peter, BBC's 'They Think its all Over', TV advert for Physio Sport, 'Simply the Best' and commentating for the BBC on gymnastics. He now visits schools around the UK, recently visiting Musselburgh Grammar School near Edinburgh, Scotland and The Hereford Academy in West Midlands, England, he has also visited Hathershaw College of Technology and Sport in Oldham, Lancashire and was a guest speaker at their prize presentation evening, on 12 November 2009. Heap recently visited Ysgol John Bright in Llandudno, attending a Year 11 Graduation Ceremony. he visited a senior school In north Yorkshire on 28th June.
In 2013 Craig became a patron for Events for Charity (run by Darren Young) a Gillingham (Kent) run organisation. Although the events carried out by Events for Charity are promoted by Craig, he does not take responsibility for the actions of the charity work.
- summer olympic games national park at olymfituk.co.uk
- "English prepare double assault". BBC News. 5 June 2002. Retrieved 2 January 2010.