Saturday, 25 April 2015


Did you have a hobby you loved as a child? A hobby you later dropped? We asked readers to share their memories of long lost loves…

Emily says:
I started going to ballet class when I was just two years old. I went to a small academy, and every year there would be exams and performances. As the years went by, I started doing jazz, tap and gymnastics too… I was one of the younger ones, but I was in a group with some fairly advanced dancers. When I was six, a music group came to our school and I was the only child who signed up for it. I loved it, but I was out four nights a week and Saturday mornings with all my dance commitments. It was too much - I just couldn't cope. The dancing was getting tougher, but I absolutely loved my keyboard lessons. I knew in the end that I had to stop dance classes - I had no choice, if I'd stayed I would have begun to hate it. I'm now studying for my Grade Four on a keyboard course; I study with older teens and love being pushed in something I actually enjoy. I know I made the right decision - I'm happy with what I did and what I didn't do.

Abigail says:
I used to do gymnastics three times a week, starting from when I was about five. I liked it but I didn't like all the coaches and I got upset if I couldn't do certain moves. A friend broke her leg on the beam, which really knocked my confidence; I got scared and the coaches lost patience with me. I got moved down a group, but my sister was still in the higher group and we were there most nights of the week. I wasn't happy and we moved club when I was seven. It was better for a while, but I was still scared of the beam and although I was competing in competitions I hated being under pressure. Before a competition I was always scared and tearful, and once I messed up badly and had to stop my routine. My sister had an injury and couldn't perform properly, and finally, aged ten, I quit gymnastics forever. It was totally the right decision for me, but still, sometimes I miss it. I still watch gymnastics if it's on TV and enjoy it.

Ruadhan says:
I wanted to be a professional rider from the age of three. My poster girl was Zara Philips and I watched Black Beauty and War Horse over and over. When I was five, I started lessons, and loved it. I thought it would all end when we moved to the city when I was eleven, but Mum found me a new riding school and I began to lease a horse called Mocha. I often stayed late to feed and groom her. The following year I entered my first cross country event and came second… but it was to be my first and last event. One day I was trekking with some friends. We were riding alongside a stream when something rustled in a bush and made Mocha rear up. I fell and broke my leg badly in two places. Eight weeks later, when I was well again, the riding school asked me to come back again, but I just couldn't - I was too scared. Now, two years on, I really regret it… I allowed fear to take away my dream.

Amber says:
I was really into dance as a child. I was in an after school club for many years  and earned four medals in exams. In every 'wishing jar' and notebook I still have from those times, I can still see the faint handwriting that reads 'I want to be a famous dancer.' Those messages have been erased and written over with a new dream, 'I want to study journalism at Cambridge University,' but traces of that original dream still remain. I regret stopping, as I became quite unfit. I'd devoted so many hours to choreographing dances, trying to make them good enough for me to audition for 'Got To Dance.' Quitting dance was probably the worse decision I've ever made.

Cathy says:
Interesting… some decisions here seem to have been made for the right reasons, and some not. Maybe it's not too late for Ruadhan and Amber to pick up their hobbies again and find the enthusiasm they once had? Have YOU ever dropped a childhood hobby? COMMENT BELOW to tell us more!


  1. I did ballet up until I was about 10. It'd got to the point where the 2 good people in our class were allowed to do the exams and the rest of us were told we could continue taking part etc but we wouldn't gain any proper grades. I loved ballet but I have no regrets for quitting it because I was able to start horse riding instead and I love that even more! I also used to swim and got really good at it but one term we didn't know if I'd be free during my lesson time so we didn't book me in and I've never had another lesson since. I don't really mind though.

  2. I used to be an air cadet, and it was something I really enjoyed. I was there for four and a half years, and liked it because of all of the things I got to do that most teenagers my age wouldn't even dream of doing.

    I didn't quit exactly. There were issues with bullying and favouritism, and it's basically a very discriminatory environment to be in- like something out of the 1950s. I tried to report bullying, and kept on reporting it because nothing was being done so they refused to sign my over 18 extension and told me to leave.

    I still miss it quite a bit, and there are times when I will go into my wardrobe to iron my uniform and realise that I've now left and I gave back the uniform. It makes me feel sad when I look at the pictures of me in uniform, because of how much I miss it. I would do anything to be able to go back, but I know that I can't. It just seems a big shame that I tried to do the right thing and lost my hobby for it.

  3. I did karate a few months back, but it wasn't really karate... it was really just gymnastics. I HATE gymnastics! I never seem to do the right moves and kick my legs up. So i signed up for 6-7pm, the actual karate hour, with my favourite coach, Megan. But at the start of every lesson, they made us do really long and painful exercises. I told my best friends and they told me to tell my mum & dad that I wanted to quit. But I knew that if I told them that, they'd get kinda mad at me. I suffered 3 more lessons (weeks) of this before I finally worked up the courage to tell my mum. She didn't get mad and she let me quit! :)



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