Laurel Zimmerman Adams - Head Coach
Ms. Laurel Zimmerman Adams, Managing Partner of Huff ‘n Puff and its programs, is also head gymnastics team coach. Laurel has been associated with Huff ‘n Puff from its beginning in 1980. She began taking dance and gymnastics at age three and became a serious student of dance and gymnastics at age ten with the opening of Huff 'n Puff. Ms. Laurel began teaching dance to adults at a very young age. Her background in dance comes from many years of study with well-known Arkansas instructors, through studio classes, college courses and private lessons. She also began teaching gymnastics at Huff 'n Puff at age 14.
Ms. Laurel and her family returned to Arkansas in 1996 so she could once again be a part of the business. She is a member of the professional USA Gymnastics Federation, is safety certified by USAG and is a USAG Skill Evaluator; she has also recertified as a USAG Junior Olympic Judge - Levels One thru Ten, and all levels Xcel. She also completed her Kinder Accreditation, a preschool gymnastics certification. She teaches advanced gymnastics and prepares the more advanced students for competitions. In 1998, she began the Jacksonville Gymnastics Competitive Team with eleven Level Four members. This summer our competitive team, Levels One through Nine, numbers nearly 100 competitors, and has had several state championships to its credit.
Laurel has an associate degree in Interior Design from the Art Institute in Dallas and an associate degree in Business Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management. Besides managing the business, she also does screen-printing, embroidery and jewel work on the program attire for the students and parents. Laurel has also qualified to judge USAG competitive levels one - through ten and spends several weekends during the competitive season judging other competitions.
Laurel is the daughter of Sheryl Zimmerman and mother to 26-year old Tori, and to 22-year old Madi, who did gymnastics for sixteen years at HnP and was a Level Nine gymnast with the Jax Gym competitive team when she graduated from high school. Madi graduated this spring from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, with a degree in Fashion. She is planning to work on her master's degree in Fashion in New York City Ms. Laurel is also grandmother to Tori's son Wryatt who was born in mid-June, 2016, and step grandmother to Larry's two young grandsons.
Jenna Mecca - Team Coach
Coach Jenna began her gymnastics career at Huff ‘n Puff when she was in the first grade and immediately fell in love with the sport. She was moved to competitive team her second year and competed for several years, winning State Championship on Vault (her favorite event) and also winning Second Place Individual All-Around State Championship that same year.
Jenna began assistant coaching at Huff ‘n Puff in the summer of 2015 and has continued coaching since then. In addition to coaching, she also competed as a Diamond gymnast in Xcel during the 2016-2017 meet season. She took second place at state and Vault is still her absolute favorite. She thought it was a blast to make a comeback after being out of competitive gymnastics for several years.
Jenna loves coaching and working with kids. She has proven to be a valuable asset to our gymnastics program. She says that she loves her job and she feels like it is her responsibility to teach the young gymnasts to use their abilities to their best and we’re certain that she is also instilling in them her same love of gymnastics as she coaches them. Jenna says that the smiles of the gymnasts makes her heart happy.
Jenna is coaching Competitive Level Two, Three, and Xcel Silver gymnasts this year. But over the years she has coached Level Two through Six, Xcel Silver and Gold..
Jenna is currently enrolled for the fall of 2021 to earn her Real Estate License where she will continue to follow her dreams of buying, flipping and selling houses. In the meantime, she will continue to teach our gymnasts.
We are happy that Sara continues to coach for us as she attends classes at UCA, where she is majoring in Exercise Health Science, working toward physical therapy. She has recenlty taken a student internship position at Milestones Pediatric Therapy in Cabot, Arkansas, for the fall semester. These are Sara's words in 2021.
"I started gymnastics in a recreational class at Huff 'n Puff when I was four years old. The next year I became a competitive gymnast as a member of the Jax Gym Competitive Team and competed for nine years. I had fallen in love with gymnastics when I had seen the "big girls" do their floor routines and I wanted to be just like them. Gymnastics has taught me many life lessons, has brought me close to many different people, and has given me many amazing experiences to help me develop many deep friendships. My favorite event to coach is floor because I love to tumble and dance, and just show who I am, and my highest team competition scores were always on floor. I absolutely love coaching gymnastics because it brings back great memories, and I get to teach the sport that I grew up doing. I am hoping that the gymnasts that I coach will enjoy gymnastics as much as I did. Also, my gymnastics training made it easy for me to become a cheerleader on the Sylvan Hills High School Competitive Squad."
JAX GYM COMPETITIVE TEAM GYMNASTICS STAFF - 2021
Dennis Harris - Optional Team Coach
Coach Dennis graduated from Hendrix College. He is a 38-year member of USA Gymnastics; he has been USAG safety certified for the past 32 years. He was a former Arkansas USAG advisory committee chairman and former Region Three USAG board member. He is also Kindercare accredited. He has 38 years coaching experience in competitive gymnastics and has coached at Jax Gym for the past several years. He is currently coaching Levels Six - Nine at JAX Gym. Coach Dennis coached Jax Gym Level Nine Gymnast, Joshuline Gaynor, to Western Nationals in April, 2015. Joshuline was one of two gymnasts from Arkansas to qualify for Western Nationals in Spokane, Washington, where she competed very well, placing third on bars and eighth all-around – a very high placement of anyone from AR from years past. Coach Dennis attended the Olympics several years ago in Rio and thoroughly enjoyed watching the US gymnasts as they competed and achieved their many highest awards. You may not be aware, Coach Dennis has "done" the hair and makeup for Ms. Arkansas pageant contestants, as well as Ms. America winners. We were all so proud when Ms. Arkansas won the Ms. America conpetition a couple years ago - especially so since we know that Dennis had applied that makeup and was responsible for her hairdos during the pageant week. We are so pleased that Coach Dennis is such a big part of the Jax Gym Competitive Team.
COACH STACY PERSON - 2021
Coach Stacy Person, team coach, first joined us eighteen years ago. Ms. Stacy started gymnastics at age seven, and at age eight, was the first person from Searcy to compete in a USAG meet. She competed in gymnastics for eleven years, and won many medals and awards. She was in training for level nine when she stopped taking gymnastics. She has coached gymnastics for over twenty years--teaching preschool, tiny team, recreational classes, power tumbling, cheerleading, preteam and team, levels one to ten and xcel. Coach Stacy will continue to coach Xcel and Optional gymnasts this season
Coach Laurel and daughter, Level Nine Madi at last meet after sixteen years of gymnastics - a bittersweet moment!
Sara Heil - 2019 Team Coach
Laurel - Spring 2019
Lois Overholser - 2021 Coach Levels One and Two Team Gymnasts
IT HAS BEEN SAID FOR YEARS THAT JAX GYM HAS THE BEST LOOKING COACHES IN THE STATE - I WOULD HAVE TO AGREE BUT WE THINK WE HAVE THE BEST COACHES IN THE STATE.
Tori Spears - Team Coach
Tori is the older daughter of Coach Laurel and granddaughter of Sheryl. She began her gymnastics career at the age of two when Laurel and family moved back to assist with Huff 'n Puff in 1996. She competed for twelve years and has coached for ten years. She coached at Huff 'n Puff and also coached at another gym in the state while she was attending ASU at Jonesboro, before returning to coach again at Jax Gym. Tori coached the Level Three team for two years and this year will be coaching Level Two gymnasts. She and Keith are the parents of four-year old Wryatt. Tori is also a certified personal trainer and and licensed real estate agent, so stays quite busy, but she thoroughly enjoys her coaching responsibilities.
Sara is a great asset at Huff 'n Puff and Jax Gym. This is her seventh year to coach. She will be coaching Levels Six, Seven, Eight, and Gold. She has coached Levels Three, Four and Six in the past several years. Sara and Laurel coached 2018 Level Four gymnasts to the runner-up state championship and 2019 Level Six gymnasts to runner up State Championship.. . Sara also became USAG certified to judge Competitive Levels One - Five.
Coach Dennis is shown here with Kylie and Kendyl, Level Eight gymnasts at Region Three 2021 Regionals - Kylie placed second and Kendyl placed fourth. We were quite proud of our gymnasts and our coaches.
Wryatt really enjoys the Ninja Classes at Huff 'n Puff
Tori - first daughter also brought up at Huff 'n Puff.
Laurel - Skills Revue 2021
Coaches shown here are Stacy, Julia, Sara and Jenna - taken at gymnastics Revue 2019.
Jax Gym Competitive Team Coaches:
Level One - Lois Overholser and Rachel Wyrick
Level Two - Lois Overholser, Tori Spears, Liz Weaver, Jenna Mecca
Level Three - Lynn Gast, Liz Weaver, Jenna Mecca
Level Six and Xcel Gold - Laurel Adams, Dennis Harris, Sara Heil, Stacy Persons
Level Seven, Eight and Nine - Laurel Adams, Dennis Harris, Sara Heil, Stacy Persons
Xcel Silver - Jenna Mecca, Lynn Gast, Liz Weaver
Xcel Diamond - Stacy Person
Ms. Lois teaches morning preschool gymnastics classes in addition to her many other responsibilities at Huff 'n Puff. Ms. Lois loves children so these preschool classes are right up her alley. Coach Lois also co-coached Jax Gym Competitive Levels One and Two last season and she and Ms. Rachel will coach the Level One Team this season. In addition, Coach Lois will co-coach the Level Two Team. There is not enough room for me to write all about Ms. Lois - she has been with Huff 'n Puff, Jax Gym and Jax Dance Company for 20 years. She is a mainstay in our business. She was one of Coach Laurel's original Level Four gymnasts 20 years ago - the team that helped establish our very existance today. Thank you Ms. and Coach Lois for all you do for us. (She was also a NICU and PICU nurse for over ten years.) Two years ago Lois Bryan became Lois Overholser and with that beautiful wedding, she became mom to two fantastic little girls who are in both competitive gymnastics and dance! In addition to gymnastics coaching, Ms. Lois has been director of dance for many years and our Jacksonville Dance Company has become quite competitive in the regional and national dance competitions, with our dancers and instructors winning many awards and titles.
Rachel Wyrick returned to Huff 'n Puff in the fall of 2018. While she is primarily a highly qualified dance instructor (please see her resume under dance), she is also very qualified to teach gymnastics to younger children, as well. Ms. Rachel spent several years in the Huff 'n Puff gymnastics program, and competed for several years before deciding to spend more time in the dance program. Ms. Rachel is wonderful with young (and older) children and we are so pleased that she is back adding her wonderful personality and talents to our program. Ms. Rachel also teaches recreational dance classes for preschoolers to teens, while also also teaching classes to Jacksonville Dance Company dancers. We are so pleased that Ms. Rachel chose to come back to our area to once again be part of the HnP family. Ms. Rachel has been teaching our preschool gymnasts for several years now and is very popular with her students and parents. Additionally, Ms. Rachel has also become Coach Rachel, as she has joined Coach Lois in coaching the Jax Gym Competitive Level One gymnasts. Rachel and Lois are just examples of how proud we are that our once-students have become such fantastic instructors in both dance and gymnastics.
Rachel Wyrick - Level One Team Coach
Huff 'n Puff and Jax Gym are so very proud of this fantastic roster of Coaches who will be coaching nearly 100 team gymnasts this summer and fall. We are looking forward to a great competitive season.
Liz Weaver - Team Coach
Liz Weaver came to Jax Gym late spring, 2021 after she received her Bachelors's Degree in Business Management and Marketing and Master's Degree in Business Administration from Arkansas Tech at Russellville. Liz was a competitive gymnast for ten years and competed up to Level Eight. She was a cheerleader in high school at White Hall and was an NCA All-American. She was on the Universal Cheerleading Association Cheerleading Staff and was a cheerleader at Arkanasas Tech. Liz was a competitive gymnastics coach for three years in Russellville, coaching Levels Two-Seven, xcel silver, gold and platinum. Liz is a great addition to the Jax Gym Coaching staff and she will coach Levels Two, Three and Xcel Silver. Liz will also teach recreational gymnastics.
Coach Lois and Coach Rachel will be coaching the Level One youngest gymnasts and the following for each of these coaches is copied from Preschool Gymnastics.
Tori, Jenna, Lois and Liz will coach the Level Two Gymnasts.