GREAT FALLS — A Great Falls family is aiming to inspire young gymnasts who either have, or looking to hit the mat for the first time.
Jesse and Kayla Brannon were inspired by their young daughter, Isabelle. While her sport was soccer, gymnastics became an all-new experience.
"I coached her for three seasons in soccer," Jesse said. "I was always a team sports guy, and I was opposed to this at first. I didn't think there was a lot of benefits to an individual sport like this. I was worried about injuries. My wife, Kayla really wanted to get into it, so we did. It's been one of the best decisions we have ever made. How she's grown and what it's done for her. She's fallen in love with it. She's shown me what a four, five, six-year-old is capable of doing. She's impressed me the whole way.
Two and a half years ago, Isabelle started gymnastics at a local gym just before she turned five years old yet. According to Jesse, she had a poor inner belief system. she also lacked confidence and would get anxiety about things kids shouldn't even worry about. Isabelle would also stare at the floor when she spoke to people.
Fast forward to today, and Isabelle has transitioned to a confident and mentally tough seven-year-old with various medals. Jesse said putting her into gymnastics was the difference maker.
"Coming to the Great Falls Gymnastics Academy and the coaches here have been unbelievable to her ... The positive reinforcement has been incredible for her, and it's been really fun to watch and makes me really proud."
When speaking with Isabelle, she said there are three things that she loves most about her time as a gymnast.
"I have friends. it's made me more strong, more braver and more fun," she said.
The Montana-based company, Gymnast IQ has developed of making a significant leap in democratizing the sport of gymnastics.
"Our vision is to make this transformation accessible to all families, in the hope that these children grow into strong, empowered young adults ready to face the world. We believe large-scale impact can happen one child at a time," Jesse said.
The platform features US National Team Coach Chris Bushard and Jr US National Team gymnast & Gold Medalist at the 23 US Championships Reese Esponda, who demonstrate various training routines in the videos. Such high-level coaching ordinarily costs thousands per month, but with Gymnast IQ, it's available to all skill levels at an affordable price.
Jesse said, "Coaching soccer was great, but learning a new skill and doing something you didn't think you could do, gives a kid a feeling of confidence that you can't replicate anywhere else."
Jesse and Kayla are putting together in effort to help kids of Montana in which they can register for a free membership.
To learn more, click here to visit the GymnastIQ website: