Nola Sparkle is an eight-week mentorship program for young gymnasts sponsored by NOLA Gymnastics.
Our mission is to empower all of our gymnasts to SPARKLE, and be the best they can be both in and out of the gym.
Our program uses gymnastics, storytelling, and the S.P.A.R.K.L.E curriculum to help our gymnasts become more confident, capable, and shine not just on the floor but in the rest of their lives too!
Coach Ivan and coach Lillian lead the discussion and questions while encouraging conversation with the students.
Classes will be held weekly on Tuesdays 5-6 PM at NOLA Gymnastics.
September 21: S for Strength
September 28: P for Practice
October 5: A for Attitude
October 19: R for Respect
October 26: K for Kindness
November 2: L for Leadership
November 9: E for Emotion
November 16: SPARKLE Closing Ceremony and Celebration
NOLA SPARKLE is an eight-week mentorship program at NOLA Gymnastics that helps young gymnasts explore how they can SPARKLE not only as athletes, but as people.
In weekly sessions incorporated within their training, we will use games and storytelling to introduce our athletes to 7 core concepts. Coach Ivan and Lillian will lead questions and answers, and discussions encouraging conversations with the students. These concepts are important in gymnastic training. The girls will learn how these ideas also can empower their life outside of the gym.
The NOLA SPARKLE program will culminate in a very sparkly gymnastics meet and ceremony. Our goal is that the girls will leave feeling empowered, and know that they each SPARKLE in their own special way.
The course will be incorporated into Acro and Artistic training time at NOLA Gymnastics, so there is no added cost to usual lessons.
We encourage young gymnasts to build strong minds and strong bodies. One struggles to survive without the other. Mental toughness allows us to stay focused on our intentions instead of negative thoughts and fears. This is what helps us understand that struggle is important and will not limit your success. Energy, flexibility, endurance, power, speed, agility, balance and stability are all a part of a strong body. Working on these qualities along with proper nutrition increases our physical preparation for gymnastics. We encourage a healthy relationship with food and our bodies.A HEALTHY OUTSIDE STARTS FROM THE INSIDE
Practice like you compete. Commit to practice and never give up trying. Don't compare yourself to other gymnasts. Everyone is on a different journey.GREATNESS ISN'T BORN, IT'S MADE
Make a conscious habit to express and communicate thankfulness and appreciation. Surround yourself with positive people. This will increase your joy.TRAIN YOUR MIND TO SEE THE GOOD IN EVERY SITUATION
Learn to be a cooperative and supportive team member and friend, as well as a good listener to fellow teammates, coaches, judges and parents.TEAMWORK MAKES THE DREAM WORK
Smile and be compassionate. Stop and help someone. Pay it forward and do random acts of kindness.ONE KIND WORD CAN CHANGE SOMEONE'S ENTIRE DAY
Leadership is about having vision, responsibility and commitment to motivate and inspire others towards success. Like a lioness be fearless to stand up for yourself and others.ONCE YOU BECOME FEARLESS, LIFE BECOMES LIMITLESS
Be present and aware of where and what we are doing rather than reactive or overwhelmed. Respond not react. Keep your composure and emotions in check.DEEP BREATHS, LESS STRESS
At NOLA Gymnastics, we believe gymnastics develops fitness, character, integrity, discipline and self-motivation in all areas of their lives. We want our athletes to grow up with loving memories of this sport and develop a sense of fearlessness. Consistent with our mission and the pledge of USAG, we believe NOLA SPARKLE is a program that helps “foster... a safe, positive and encouraging environment throughout the gymnastics community.”
NOLA Gymnastics Acro Head coach, Ivan Ivanov, was formerly a decorated international elite gymnast and is finding creative ways to pass that legacy on to young gymnasts in Louisiana. Coach Ivan not only has grown the NOLA Gymnastics team to include higher level gymnasts, but he also instills positive character traits and foster team unity within this program.
"Together with my student Lillian Powers we have implemented this mentorship program to create confidence in our gymnasts in all aspects of their lives."
“As we all became aware of the highly publicized abuse in the gymnastics arena, I realized that positive coaching is a top priority moving forward. We need to give girls the skills to be fearless and speak out against verbal, physical and sexual abuse. We also need to create an environment that does not encourage eating disorders.“
Coach Lillian is a senior and honor student at Isidore Newman School and Captain of their Varsity Gymnastics team.
Coach Lillian has trained at NOLA Gymnastics since she was 3 years old. She has competed and medaled as an acrobatic gymnast at the local, state, national and international level and is a three time National Champion.
Coach Lillian Powers co-directs NOLA SPARKLE together with her mentor Ivan Ivanov in the hopes of mentoring upcoming gymnasts.
First starting the sport at age 3, Coach Lillian has almost 13 years of experience as a gymnast.
“Gymnastics has taught me so many tools for success. What I learned in gymnastics, I have applied to my life as a student, friend and sister. Gymnastics taught me to show up ready, to be deliberate, to work hard and to always to have your team members’ back. It also taught me about reaching out to teammates and coaches when I was unsure. Gymnastics helped me understand that there is a balance and healthy way to develop and achieve your goals, whatever they might be. I am so excited to help young gymnasts achieve their goals, both on and off the mat.”