Beauty of gymnastics a reason to break from shopping

PUHI — Jack and Kay Leonard of the Kaua‘i Gymnastics Academy have come a long way in five years.

“The number of gymnasts performing is almost double of last year’s performance,” said Kay, excited about the 5th Annual Holiday Exhibition this Sunday at the Kukui Grove Center starting at 1 p.m.

Jack said the group will be broken down into three teams performing on the balance beam, the tramptrak and floor exercises, similar to a three ring circus with the groups rotating through the various stations in a show almost two hours in length.

“This is our fifth year bringing these talented gymnasts to share their love and talent for gymnastics with the community,” Kay said. “We are very proud of what they accomplish while working out a limited number of hours each week in the gym.”

The annual exhibition brings the current Fall session to a close, the last meeting being Dec. 19. However, gymnastics is year-round, and following the winter break, the winter session starts up Jan. 4 and runs through March 13.

Team members range in age from 6 to 17. The youngest team taking the floor is Iki Hui. Hoku Hui and Kula Hui, the highest level team, will also be performing through the three areas.

Kay said the three team members work out between three to seven hours a week, depending on their level.

The Pre-Team, working out just 1.5 hours a week, will be joining the three teams because they have learned many great skills, Kay said.

Another of the instructors said the gymnasts will be performing not only gymnastics, but also show off some of the dance routines as well.

Gymnastics opens the door for many sports, activities and simply getting through life with a fit lifestyle, states the Kaua‘i Gymnastics Web site.

Among the team members are surfers, swimmers, cheer squad members and other athletes and the walls of the gym located in the Puhi Industrial Park is peppered with stories of achievements by local athletes that have affiliation with Kaua‘i Gymnastics.

Jack is formerly of Hill’s Gymnastics Training Center in Faithersburg, Maryland and has, along with Kay, coached cheerleaders, wrestlers, football players, and more recently, the 2008 ITSA World Tandem Champions.

For more information, visit www.kauaigymnastics.com, or call 245-8863.

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