Athlete and Gymnast agree in denoting a person skilled in physical performance requiring agility, powers of endurance, and, often, muscular strength.
Athlete also usually implies the status of a contender in games or in sports involving a contest, whether outdoor or indoor; school or college athletes are the students who participate in school sports (as football, baseball, basketball, or track).
- an outstanding athlete who had participated in several college sports
A gymnast is one who is skilled in bodily exercises and calisthenics performed often with the aid of apparatus for the development of nimbleness, strength, and control in the use of the body.
- leaping back a yard . . . with the speed and security of a trained gymnast