Nola Baby January 2016 : Page 47

GRETCHEN SCHULTZ NOLA GYMNASTICS KRISTEN JEANES-MOODY DANCER’S POINTE THE BALANCE BEAM Gretchen Schultz has been coaching gymnastics since she was 14, but until recently kept it to part-time. The three-time U.S. Acrobatic Gymnastics National Champion, an LSU grad, spent her days as a physical therapist specializing in orthopedic rehabilitation. She also was busy raising her daughter, now 16. A single mom for most of Lexei’s childhood, Gretchen knew the difficulties of juggling work and transportation to afterschool programs. So she created satellite gymnastics programs at several area schools, including Sacred Heart, Louise McGehee and Ursaline; those programs continue to be very popular among students and parents alike. As a coach, Gretchen also became very popular. Isidore Newman approached her about opening her own gymnastics school on their campus and becoming their varsity gymnastics coach. She jumped at the chance. “Newman has an incredible athletic department, and an amazing championship culture,” she says. And her new facility? It’s 4,000-square feet, in the heart of Uptown, so busy parents don’t have to commute all over New Orleans for gymnastics. Gretchen opened her new gymnastics school on Newman’s campus in 2014. Her students range in age from three to 16, and among the programs she offers is Junior Olympics Acrobatic Gymnastics. Her daughter, a two-time Team U.S. Acrobatic Gymnastics National Champion and a sophomore at Sacred Heart, is one of her coaches. So too is Ivan Ivanof, a six-time Bulgarian National Champion and an international judge. “He’s an incredible coach,” says Gretchen. “His enthusiasm is contagious and the girls just love him.” Gretchen has a philosophy with her competitive team that her students and parents appreciate, too: she gives them flexibility to balance the demands of training with those of family life and school. “Life is not all about gymnastics,” she says. “We need to have our toes in the sand sometimes. Happy kids win medals, too.” DRIVEN BY DANCE Although Kristen Jeanes-Moody lived and breathed dance from the time she was a preschooler, she never envisioned herself owning her own studio. “It was out of the question because it doesn’t make for a good family life,” she says. “I thought I should be a school teacher by day and a dance instructor by night,” and adjust her schedule accordingly when she had kids. Following her carefully plotted path, Kristen competed and taught classes throughout her middle and high school years and then enrolled at UNO to earn a degree in Elementary Education. While in college, she continued to dance and teach classes, and also met the man who would become her husband, Shawn. The two traveled the world judging, competing and teaching workshops in partner dancing. Everything was perfect except that Kristen was frustrated by her lack of growth potential as an instructor at one of the studios. That got her reevaluating the possibility of opening her own studio. “I decided I would go do my own thing,” she says. “I could totally do my last semester of college and open a studio at the same time.” And so, in 2002 while still finishing up her college credits, Kristen opened Dancer’s Pointe in Metairie. Within five years, she had a husband, a daughter (now nine and a competitive dancer herself) and a house in addition to her own business. And then in 2012 she opened a second studio, in Lakeview. “My mom grew up in Lakeview, and so did Shawn’s mom. I grew up going every Sunday to lunch at my grandparents. It was a happy place!” It was also a place that hadn’t had a dance studio open since Katrina. Running two studios isn’t the structured, “normal” family life she envisioned for her future family when she was a child. But now she says she understands that we all have to adapt to our environments. “No one really has normalcy. You create it with what you do.” jan/feb 2016 | www.nolababy.com NBF: WHAT’S ONCE DANCE YOU HAVEN’T PERFORMED BUT WOULD LEAP AT THE CHANCE TO? NBF: SCRUNCHIES, OR SPARKLES? GRETCHEN: Sparkles of course. They make the girls feel like rock stars. NOLA Gymnastics 1725 Dufossat St, New Orleans, LA nolagymnastics.com KRISTEN: I’ve never really learned the Tango. I would love to find the time to learn it and ask [my husband] to dance and know how to really do it. Dancer’s Pointe, 5101 W. Esplanade Ave., Ste. 12, Metairie, LA 504.455.5975, 6268 Vicksburg St., Ste. C&D, New Orleans, LA 504.265.8350; dancers-pointe.com. 47

MOMPRENEURS

GRETCHEN SCHULTZ NOLA GYMNASTICS<br /> <br /> THE BALANCE BEAM<br /> <br /> Gretchen Schultz has been coaching gymnastics since she was 14, but until recently kept it to part-time. The three-time U.S. Acrobatic Gymnastics National Champion, an LSU grad, spent her days as a physical therapist specializing in orthopedic rehabilitation.<br /> <br /> She also was busy raising her daughter, now 16. A single mom for most of Lexei’s childhood, Gretchen knew the difficulties of juggling work and transportation to afterschool programs. So she created satellite gymnastics programs at several area schools, including Sacred Heart, Louise McGehee and Ursaline; those programs continue to be very popular among students and parents alike.<br /> <br /> As a coach, Gretchen also became very popular. Isidore Newman approached her about opening her own gymnastics school on their campus and becoming their varsity gymnastics coach. She jumped at the chance.<br /> <br /> “Newman has an incredible athletic department, and an amazing championship culture,” she says. And her new facility? It’s 4,000-square feet, in the heart of Uptown, so busy parents don’t have to commute all over New Orleans for gymnastics.<br /> <br /> Gretchen opened her new gymnastics school on Newman’s campus in 2014. Her students range in age from three to 16, and among the programs she offers is Junior Olympics Acrobatic Gymnastics. Her daughter, a two-time Team U.S. Acrobatic Gymnastics National Champion and a sophomore at Sacred Heart, is one of her coaches. So too is Ivan Ivanof, a six-time Bulgarian National Champion and an international judge.<br /> <br /> “He’s an incredible coach,” says Gretchen. “His enthusiasm is contagious and the girls just love him.”<br /> <br /> Gretchen has a philosophy with her competitive team that her students and parents appreciate, too: she g ives them flexibility to balance the demands of training with those of family life and school.<br /> <br /> “Life is not all about g ymnastics,” she says. “We need to have our toes in the sand sometimes. Happy kids win medals, too.”<br /> <br /> NBF: SCRUNCHIES, OR SPARKLES?<br /> <br /> GRETCHEN: Sparkles of course. They make the girls feel like rock stars.<br /> <br /> NOLA Gymnastics 1725 Dufossat St, New Orleans, LA nolagymnastics.com<br /> <br /> KRISTEN JEANES-MOODY DANCER’S POINTE<br /> <br /> DRIVEN BY DANCE<br /> <br /> Although Kristen Jeanes-Moody lived and breathed dance from the time she was a preschooler, she never envisioned herself owning her own studio. “It was out of the question because it doesn’t make for a good family life,” she says. “I thought I should be a school teacher by day and a dance instructor by night,” and adjust her schedule accordingly when she had kids.<br /> <br /> Following her carefully plotted path, Kristen competed and taught classes throughout her middle and high school years and then enrolled at UNO to earn a degree in Elementary Education. While in college, she continued to dance and teach classes, and also met the man who would become her husband, Shawn. The two traveled the world judging, competing and teaching workshops in partner dancing. Everything was perfect except that Kristen was frustrated by her lack of growth potential as an instructor at one of the studios. That got her reevaluating the possibility of opening her own studio.<br /> <br /> “I decided I would go do my own thing,” she says. “I could totally do my last semester of college and open a studio at the same time.”<br /> <br /> And so, in 2002 while still finishing up her c ollege credits, Kristen opened Dancer’s Pointe in Metairie. Within five years, she had a husband, a daughter (now nine and a competitive dancer herself) and a house in addition to her own business. And then in 2012 she opened a second studio, in Lakeview.<br /> <br /> “My mom grew up in Lakeview, and so did Shawn’s mom. I grew up going every Sunday to lunch at my grandparents. It was a happy place!” It was also a place that hadn’t had a dance studio open since Katrina.<br /> <br /> Running two studios isn’t the structured, “normal” family life she envisioned for her future family when she was a child. But now she says she understands that we all have to adapt to our environments.<br /> <br /> “No one really has normalcy. You create it with what you do.”<br /> <br /> NBF: WHAT’S ONCE DANCE YOU HAVEN’T PERFORMED BUT WOULD LEAP AT THE CHANCE TO?<br /> <br /> KRISTEN: I’ve never really learned the Tango. I would love to find the time to learn it and ask [my husband] to dance and know how to really do it.<br /> <br /> Dancer’s Pointe, 5101 W. Esplanade Ave., Ste. 12, Metairie, LA 504.455.5975, 6268 Vicksburg St., Ste. C&D, New Orleans, LA 504.265.8350; dancers-pointe.com.<br />

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