SCV gymnast Jeremy Bischoff has Olympic dreams

Gymnast Jeremy Bischoff practices his skills on the pommel horse at Wallers Gymjam Academy on Friday. Dan Watson/The Signal

For Learning Post and Canyon High School student Jeremy Bischoff, the love of gymnastics started when was 4 years old.

His introduction to gymnastics started as a way to unleash his never-ending energy, and his parents wanted to find a safe environment for him to roll around and jump. 

“I think when I was around 4, my parents noticed that I was really energetic at home,” Bischoff said. “I would do jumps off the couch and roll around and run around the house and they wanted me to do it in a safer environment, so they brought me to a gym and that’s when I started classes.”

Bischoff has come a long way from jumping off couches and running around the house. Now at the age of 17 and after an incredible showing at the 2019 U.S. Gymnastics Championships in early August, he’s been selected as one of 14 people across the country to join the Men’s Junior National Team.

His first camp with the National Team begins on Oct. 17, and Bischoff is hoping to impress the coaching staff enough to be selected to participate in international competition. 

“Now that I’ve made the National Team I’m invited to National Team camps and I want to do well there because from there they pick the international teams,” Bischoff said. “They will pick who will go on international assignments and competitions and I hope to make some of those because I want to compete internationally. That would be cool.”

Gymnast Jeremy Bischoff puts chalk on his hands during practice at Wallers’ GymJam Academy on Friday. Dan Watson/The Signal

At the U.S. Championships, Bischoff placed in the top 10 in five out of six events and finished as the No. 4 gymnast in all-around results.

His highest finish came in the floor exercise event, which happens to be his favorite, placing third. He finished tied for fifth in the high bar, seventh in pommel horse and eighth in the still rings and parallel bars. 

What makes his accomplishment even more remarkable is that he did it with less training than usual, as he was recovering from a previous wrist injury he sustained a week before the Junior Olympic National Championships. 

“The week before Nationals I hurt it and I couldn’t really train the week before, so I competed at Nationals on it, it was a struggle. I had to water down most of my routines because I couldn’t support really,” he said. “I was in pain during Nationals but after that I took about a month and a half off of my wrist, mostly just doing floor and leg strength and flexibility. I only had about another month and a half to train routines up until US Championships so I didn’t really have as much time as I usually do.

“I was actually surprised at how well I did because leading it up to it I had a lot of doubt because I hadn’t had as much training as I did in the past, and my wrist … it was still hurting a little bit. But after the first day I hit 6-for-6 and I was doing pretty well in the rankings, I thought that I could finish it out.”

Bischoff trains four hours a day, six days a week at his home gym, Wallers’ GymJam Academy in Santa Clarita, with his coach Raj Bhavsar, who was part of the bronze medal-winning U.S. team at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. 

Gymnast Jeremy Bischoff works out on the rings at Wallers’ GymJam Academy on Friday. Dan Watson/The Signal

He switches between lighter and heavier training cycles depending on his competition schedule. He also maintains a strict diet during the season, which includes mostly meat, eggs, veggies and tons of water.

Because Bischoff is dual-enrolled at Learning Post and Canyon and has such a rigorous training and competition schedule, he doesn’t have much time for other hobbies, but when he does have a little time to relax he enjoys spending it with his friends and family and watching educational videos.

“I try to get ahead in school work as much as possible so I can focus on gymnastics and maybe relax at some point. It’s usually hard, but I deal with it,” he said. “I’ve gotten used to being very efficient with my time. My family is very supportive. I just like hanging out with friends, hanging out with my girlfriend and I like learning so I watch a lot of educational YouTube videos. I used to play video games more but now I mostly just watch them on YouTube to relax.”

Bischoff is excited about his future after high school and is looking forward to training with the National Team starting in October. After graduation, he plans on continuing his gymnastics career at the NCAA level and will begin taking college trips in a couple of months.

Eventually, he hopes to make his way to the World Championships and Olympics.

“Hopefully this year they will pick me after I go to National Team camps,” he said. “After I graduate high school I would like to compete on an NCAA team and then from there make the Senior National Team and hopefully the World Championships and Olympics.”

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