Acro Spotlight of the Month - Bobby Boswell
posted on 05/20/2020

Bobby is Acrobatic Gymnastics’ beloved trainer.

Tell me a little about yourself:
I grew up in a small town in California. While in high school I met my “High School Sweetheart”, Barbara. We have been married 44 years. We have a daughter and a son. Our daughter runs her own business, GrowthSpurts Child Development Facility, and as she was an Acro athlete growing up, she also coaches at Central Coast Gymnastics. Our son raced Motocross growing up and is a Graphic Designer in Los Gatos, California. My career was at Modesto Junior College (MJC) where I was a fulltime professor and Head Athletic Trainer, working with all of its 21 sports. I retired in 2016, after 38 years.

How did you first hear about Acro?
While at MJC I also taught all of the Gymnastics classes. I saw an Acro demonstration and was immediately impressed with the artistry, grace and skills that were exhibited during the routines. I convinced a local gym owner to start an Acro program and we developed a team. Ceres Acro Gymnastics (CAG) was born.

What was it like teaching at the college?
I loved teaching and working with all of the student-athletes at MJC. Teaching the Sports Medicine courses let me share my world with so many people. I truly believe that if you can show them and share in their positive approach to sports or education, they can achieve so much more than they thought possible. “Work Hard, Stay Humble!” I am very proud of the students I have taught in the area of Sports Medicine. Many have gone on to achieve great things in high schools, universities, WNBA, MLB, NFL, and other professional sports alike. I am very excited and proud of their accomplishments - they are my Legacy.

In 1984, you had the opportunity to work the Summer Olympic Games. How did that experience impact your career?
I was the host Athletic Trainer for both Greco Roman and Freestyle Wrestling competitions. Working with the best athletes in the world and seeing them compete to be the Olympic Champion, there’s nothing quite like it. It was an amazing experience that opened so many doors for me and my career. I became the Sports Medicine Director and Head Athletic Trainer (Western States) for USA Wrestling for 20 years. That led to more diverse Athletic Training opportunities for me, and really catapulted my career. Since the Summer Olympic Games, I have had the opportunity to work with USAG, USAT&F and USAW for a total of 89 international competitions, 98 National Championships, 34 State and Regional Championships, and 14 Olympic and World Team Trials.

What inspires you?
I am inspired by the dedication, desire, and hard work that I see when I watch athletes train and compete. Watching the athletes put their heart and soul out there on the floor for all to see and be judged gives me goose bumps knowing just how hard they have worked for that moment. After my Olympic work experience, to this day, I still get a little choked up when our athletes are standing on the podium, receiving their medals while our National Anthem is playing. I understand how hard they worked for that moment.

Do you have a favorite trip?
At the 2018 World Championships in Geneva, Switzerland, my wife, Barbara, also attended. After the competition was over, we stayed on and went up to the top of the Alps and spent a week in the most beautiful mountains we had ever seen!

What are some of your favorite memories of being involved with Acrobatic Gymnastics?
In 1999 I served as the US Athletic Trainer at the World Championships Acro (USSA) in Ghent, Belgium. Since 2002, I have worked every Acro World Championship with the exception of 2006, 11 World Cup competitions and 12 National Championships with Acrobatic Gymnastics. I have enjoyed all of my trips with the Acro teams. I don’t know if I have a favorite, but I certainly remember when Arthur and Shenea won their first World Championship for USA then followed by Michael and Kristin. Juli Eicher’s trio’s last performance was very moving. Seeing athletes earn their first medal in an international competition is also very special.

What are your concerns as an Athletic Trainer when working the events?
In a perfect world no one would ever get hurt. Unfortunately we don’t live in a perfect world. Injuries do occur. In an effort to be their best, athletes push themselves to their limits. This can contribute to the injuries that often occur. My wish would be that none of our athletes ever get hurt. But if and when they do, I am there to provide the proper care to make a bad situation better. My education and experiences enable me to provide information that would help minimize certain risks. When working with the coaches and sharing information regarding strengthening, flexibility concerns, and rehabilitation techniques, I can contribute to the athlete’s success. My goal is to help them return to the sport that they love, as soon as it is possible.

Now that you are retired what are your future plans?
I still truly enjoy working with athletes, coaches, and officials. I’m not ready to ride off into the sunset just yet. I still look forward to being involved in Athletic Training and Acro Gymnastics and I am still looking to add new experiences. I recently worked a PBR (Professional Bull Riders) event to add to my experiences!