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Jessica Ryan is 2020 National Gymnastics Coach of the Year

By Brett Hart Created: December, 2020 - Modified: November, 2022

Greatmats is proud to present Jessica Ryan of Rock ‘n Roll Gymnastics Academy as the winner of the 2020 National Gymnastics Coach of the Year award.

While Jessica grew up watching Shannon Miller and Dominique Moceanu represent the United States in the Olympics, her passion began with cheer.

“I was brought in by my gym to teach basic cheer jumps & floor skills since they’re similar,” Jessica said. “I fell in love with the sport, did a lot of homework on my own, did a lot of self teaching, learned the ins & outs and safety/spotting of what I was teaching as skills progressed, & I can proudly say I have an amazing group of girls that have been with me almost six years later.”

While learning that discipline, dedication and focus is important, she also discovered than a good attitude is required for success.

She helps spread that knowledge and attitude by donating time to a local karate dojo to work on tumbling and jump techniques to students ages 5 to 50.

“I hold the community close to my heart,” Jessica said. “When my mother was diagnosed with stage four Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma, the community came together to support her financially with a breakfast fundraiser which was wildly successful.

“Because of that, my family always supports our local fire hall with monetary donations and their monthly meal fundraisers, as well as donating cases of water through the summer months.”

Her family has also sponsored a special needs child through Wyoming Valley Children’s Association, donated to local animal shelters, CBH Ministry and Cancer Foundation, and St. Jude’s or Wounded Warriors.

To be honored for her positive impact in her community, Jessica says, “This is incredible. It’s such a heartwarming feeling to be looked up to by not only the littles that I have taught, but those that I have grown to know as “my kids” through the years. … Knowing that they have me as a mentor, confidant, & essentially an adult friend that they can turn to means so, so much to me. … They know I will always be their biggest cheerleader, and I’ve made that known since the beginning.

“Encouraging teamwork, team spirit, respect for your own team AND other teams as well is my number one rule. When I saw it come full circle, that was the defining moment that I knew I did something right. I remember those particular moments that make me so proud!”

Jessica plans to donate her prize to the gym.

“The kids there work so hard, and it’s only fair to give back to them what they’re giving to me! It sounds so cliche, but the history of the gym I work for has a Cinderella story.”
Jessica Ryan
Rock 'n Roll Gymnastics Academy
Shavertown PA 18708