Meet R-Staff

Dedication to the sport and intense training are part of each R Athletics’ Coaches resume. New coaches spend weeks shadowing classes and in skill development training. All coaches continue with monthly skill and child development instruction.

R-Coaches are Safety-Certified in first-aid and CPR and have a background check on file.

They will greet your child as they line up, encourage and praise them throughout the class and meet with you occasionally with updates and progress reports.

R-Coaches LOVE to watch your child shine!

Rachel Rydbeck

Rachel Rydbeck

Owner | Head Coach

Rachel was a competitive gymnast and a State All-Around champion in her youth and has a deep love of the sport. It brings her great joy to coach athletes who participate in gymnastics. It was her dream to be able to share her gifts and talents. In 2010 her dream was fulfilled when R Athletics opened. Rachel strives to offer excellence in all areas. Her coaching staff is exemplary and the level of coaching is top-notch. Every child is taught the proper skill progressions while having fun! Details are important to Rachel: individual attention, monthly themes, special events, and coach-parent communication are all vital components to the success each child will experience.

John Rydbeck

John Rydbeck

Owner | Finance, Building, Operations, Maintenance Manager

Married to Rachel Rydbeck for 16 years, John is responsible for all of the financial and operational decisions that keep R Athletics a top-notch facility. A graduate of Hope College with a Chemistry degree, he works at Infrastructural Alternatives, an environmental engineering firm, during the day and spends his evenings and weekends keeping R Athletics running smoothly.

Karen

Karen

Birthday Party Director | Pro-Shop Manager | Front Desk

Karen is a mother of 6 grown children and grandmother of 18. She has a teaching degree in elementary education and has taught 2nd grade. She also has been the infant and early childhood director in a large church. Karen was a part of the planning and launching of R-Athletics and is currently the director of birthday parties, manager of the Pro Shop and staff at the front desk. Karen’s talents also extend to creating all of the embroidered apparel and accessory items in the Pro Shop.

Rachel

Rachel

Developmental Team Director | Team Coach | Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Rachel was one of Rachel Rydbeck’s former gymnasts, competing all the way up to Level 10. During her career, she was a Level 9 National All-Around Champion and also received a full-ride gymnastics scholarship to Northern Illinois University. Rachel competed at college gymnastics for four years while earning a degree in nutrition and dietetics. She loves coaching gymnastics because she loves seeing the joy it brings the athletes when they learn new skills.

Claire

Claire

Team Coach | Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Claire has been involved in the sport of gymnastics for 27 years. She was a nationally competitive gymnast for twelve years. Claire has coached through all levels of the sport from Recreational through Elite. Claire has studied at both Universities of Pittsburgh and Grand Valley with a Child Psychology emphasis and is currently pursuing a Sports Science degree through the United States Sports Academy online. She loves to help children grow as athletes and individuals through her efforts.

Brittini

Brittini

Team Coach | Rec. Director

Brittini competed in gymnastics for most of her life and earned a full-ride scholarship to Michigan State as the capstone of her career. She has a B.A. in Psychology and 4 years experience coaching Gymnastics. Although no longer competing, her passion for the sport is satisfied by helping her athletes experience the same thrill that she did in the gym.

Anna

Anna

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Anna competed to level 8 Junior Olympic on R-Athletics team and now is back and using all of her knowledge to coach.She graduated from her homeschooled high school in the spring of 2023 and is now pursuing a license in cosmetology.She loves to stop by the front desk and say hi to her mom Jen!

Sophie

Sophie

Cheer Coach | Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

A competitive cheerleader at Forest Hills High School, Sophie is a natural at coaching at R-Athletics. She took classes at R when she was younger and now coaches the 5th grade cheer group as well as coaching here. "I remember loving how supportive and fun my coaches were and I wanted to share what I learned from them with my students."

Mia (Amelia)

Mia (Amelia)

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

After taking classes at R-Athletics, Amelia is a sideline and competitive cheerleader for Forest Hills. She comes into class with a strong skill set to share with her students and the enthusiasm to make them excited about the sport. We can count on Amelia to inspire her students and make them feel special!

Caitlin

Caitlin

Team Coach

Caitlin competed gymnastics for 8 years. After having a very positive experience with the sport, she wanted to share it with others. She has since then coached for 21 years from pre-team to high-level Optionals and was lucky enough to attend Nationals with one of her athletes. Her full-time job is pediatric occupational therapy. She specializes in feeding and swallowing.

Mayari (Maj)

Mayari (Maj)

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Caledonia highschooler, affectionately known as "Maj", competed in gymnastics for 9 years and now is on the diving team. Her goal is to go to school with a scholarship in diving and study to be a lawyer. Her warm smile and confident personality make her a great gymnastics coach!

Sami

Sami

Cheer Coach | Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Eight years of Competitive Cheer including 4 years at Aquinas College on a nationally competitive team made Sami a great fit for R-Athletics! She has a degree in Early Childhood Education with an emphasis in Special Ed. Little ones benefit from her calm disposition and willingness to work together to achieve their goals.

Maddie

Maddie

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Maddie began gymnastics when she was 6 and moved on to dance five years later. She is now cheering both Varsity Sideline Cheer and Competitive Cheer for Caledonia High School, as well as Lacrosse in the spring. She is looking to go into fashion merchandising and design for her future career. She loves teaching and coaching, especially in Cheer and Gymnastics.

Gabby

Gabby

Rec. & Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Gabby completed her career as a Level 9 Junior Olympic gymnast for R-Athletics which included 1st place in Regionals on beam her Senior year .She graduated from Rockford High School and is now using those skills to teach others full-time. Her deep skill-set and strong ability to explain the skills make her an excellent coach, especially for the higher levels.

Addison

Addison

Team Coach | Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Addison has been involved in gymnastics since the age of 8. She competed four years on teams at R-Athletics and has 4 years experience in dance. Addison loves kids. Her favorite part of coaching is being able to be an encourager and positive role model while helping kids achieve their goals in the sport of gymnastics.

Elisabeth

Elisabeth

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach |Team Coach

Elisabeth started gymnastics at 3 years of age and competed with R-Athletics Excel and Junior Olympic team. After graduating from Hastings High School, she was drawn back to coaching because of her love of the sport. she hopes to own her own gym someday!

Hannah B

Hannah B

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach | Team Coach

Hannah started Rec. classes at R-Athletics when she was 9 years and soon joined the Junior Olympic team where she competed through Level 8. She then competed in both high school gymnastics (where she placed 2nd in state on bars) and high school diving. Hannah competed on Calvin University‘s Woman’s’ Dive team and ranked top 25 in the nation. She also coached as an assistant for the Forest Hills Gymnastics team. Her love and passion for gymnastics brought her back to coach at R-Athletics. She loves coaching and teaching her favorite thing is watching these athletes learn and grow while doing something they love.

Meredith

Meredith

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Cheer Coach | Ninja Zone

Meredith started on Tiny Team at R-Athletics and competed until 6th grade when she switched to competitive cheer through her school. She discovered her love of coaching though a 3rd grade youth cheer coaching position and decided to continue coaching here. We appreciate Meredith’s confidence and ability to teach skills like she was taught as a young child.

Clare

Clare

Ninja Zone Coach | Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach |

Clare participated in Gymnastics and reached Level 3 Advanced at R-Athletics. Now she loves to use those skills as a coach and mentor to the younger students. At Forest Hills High School, she runs Track and Cross Country. Being the oldest in her family, she knows how to lead and be patient and responsible in her job.

Millie

Millie

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Now running cross country and playing lacrosse at Forest Hills Central High School, Millie began her sporting career participating in both gymnastics and Ninja Zone at R-Athletics. She has tutored first graders and found it rewarding. A plus for coaching at R-Athletics is she gets to watch her younger sister compete on R Junior Olympic team! Millie’s experience has helped her blossom into an excellent coach.

Mia S.

Mia S.

Cheer Coach | Rec. & Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Mia is a student at Forest Hills Central High School and has been an athlete all of her life. She is currently pursuing Volleyball and Track and Field at Forest Hills. She has always enjoyed the sport of gymnastics and took classes here when she was younger. Her goal is to study veterinary medicine in college. Her sensitiv,e encouraging spirit works well with R shyer students!

Laura

Laura

Front Desk | Birthday Parties

Laura is a retired 3rd grade teacher and Grand Rapids Native. She enjoys baking, walking and gardening in her free time. Laura is no stranger to gymnastics, as her youngest was a team member here at R-Athletics.

Rachael

Rachael

Rec. Coach | Birthday Party Coach

Rachael is a sideline and competitive cheer athlete as well as competing in track at Forest Hills Central High School. She is also an excellent pianist and offers lessons to children. After taking gymnastics at R-Athletics, she knew it was an ideal place to work for her! Rachael makes sure her classes are fun as well as challenging!

Rachel B

Rachel B

Rec|Rollin’|Cheer|Ninja Zone

The love of Competitive and Sideline Cheer got Rachel into gymnastics at an early age. Now these skills have developed her in to an awesome coach. She is a confident leader with her athletes and knows how to encourage them to do their best!

Anna M.

Anna M.

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach
Lauren

Lauren

Rec|Rollin’|Cheer|Ninja Zone

An avid athlete in basketball, gymnastics and cheer, Lauren works well in demonstrating skills and encouraging her students to push themselves to succeed. She is a student at Forest Hills High School and is a competitive cheerleader. Kids naturally warm up to Lauren’s friendly manner and enjoy her classes immensely!

Carlee

Carlee

Rec|Rollin’|Cheer|Ninja Zone

A former gymnast at R-Athletics, Carlee cheered at Forest Hills High School. She has brought her skills in cheer and gymnastics and loves coaching the students in her class. Her positive outlook and patient disposition makes her an excellent coach!

Autumn

Autumn

Rec|Rollin’|Cheer|Ninja Zone

With her gymnastics and cheerleading background a natural fit, Autumn is excited to share her skills with the classes at R-Athletics! She now cheers for Forest Hills and has coached youth cheer also. Her goal is to work professionally with children in the music industry. She loves playing the guitar and singing.

Cayden

Cayden

Rec | Rollin’| Ninja Zone

A former Ninja Zone athlete, Cayden loved the sport and was anxious to join our team! His sister is on the R-Athletics competitive team so he keeps an eye on her too : ) His college plans are still undecided but he loves working with kids and has a passion for foreign , including Spanish and French languages.

Jackson

Jackson

Rec | Rollin’| Ninja Zone

Sports fill Jackson’s days so he is a perfect fit to coach our athletes who love gymnastics and Ninja Zone too. His sister competed for R-Athletics for 10 years and he took Ninja Zone classes here so Jackson is a familiar face. He learned quickly and has great enthusiasm for the sport. He will keep your athletes excited about the sport!

Landon

Landon

Ninja Zone | Rollin’ | Rec.

Ninja Zone coaching comes naturally to Landon as he took classes here in his youth. Now he wrestles and plays rugby for Forest Hills as well as coaches for R-Athletics. He wants to attend MSU or Western Michigan for college. He remembers how fun his former coaches made the classes and wants to challenge and encourage his students in the same way.

Jillian

Jillian

Rec.| Rollin’ | Team | Ninja Zone

Jillian is a student at Forest Hills and a gymnast since she was three years old. She completed Junior Olympic Level 9 with the R-Athletics team as a National Champion! Now she loves to coach here and share her love of the sport with younger athletes.

Keaton

Keaton

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Keaton is a Senior at Forest Hills Public Schools. He currently plays tennis for Forest Hills and did 2 yrs of Ninja Zone in the past. He has coached Tennis for 3 yrs. He is hoping to attend University of Michigan to major in Botany and Plant Genetics,.

K.C.

K.C.

Front Desk | Birthday Hostess

Coming from the Traverse City area, K.C. attended college at Grand Valley University and then worked for the federal government in the DC area. After moving to Grand Rapids, K.C. enrolled her two daughters at R-Athletics and then chose to join R team. She has been married for ten years and recently adopted a Cavapoo dog named George.

Jia

Jia

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Cheer Coach | Ninja Zone

Jia is a Senior at Forest Hills Public Schools, she participates in Gymnastics and Diving for Forest Hills. She has a background in Acrobatics, which started at R Athletics. She started tumbling in Open Gyms, then progressed through Ninja Zone and advanced to the Warrior Program. She plans to go to college in the Fall with hopes to dive intramurally.

Charley

Charley

Rec. | Rollin’ | Team | Birthday Coach

Charley has been involved in gymnastics for the last ten years and is now competing as a USAG Level 10 gymnast for R-Athletics. With her limited free time, she works birthday parties or subs for classes. Her goal is to compete on the college level.

Jontae

Jontae

Birthday Party Coach

Jontae worked at R-Athletics as an amazing Ninja Zone coach for many years. He went on to a career in construction but still spends his weekends coaching birthday parties. Jontae knows how to make the birthday child feel so special and ensure a great time for everyone!

Alysse

Alysse

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Cheer | Ninja Zone Coach

Alysse is a Sophomore in High School. She has been a cheerleader for 6 yrs and Loves It, tumbling and stunts are her favorite things. She loves working with kids which includes babysitting and volunteering at summer camps.

Mackenzie

Mackenzie

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach | Team Coach

Along with her sister Avery, Mackenzie was a one of the original athletes when R-Athletics opened its doors. She practiced the sport for 15 years and competed for 12 as a Junior Olympian. She currently attends Michigan State University on a Rowing scholarship and is back to coach during the summer months. "I love R-Athletics and the way they love the sport and and encourage the kids. I just can’t stay away"!

Avery

Avery

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach | Team Coach

Avery has been involved in gymnastics for 14 years. She was an original member of the R-Athletics Junior Olympics’ competitive team. She attends Michigan State University on a Rowing scholarship. Being a mentor to the younger girls both at practice and during competitions is very satisfying to her. She enjoys passing on her knowledge of the sport to her students.

Sarah

Sarah

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Cheer Coach | Ninja Zone

Sarah is a member of the Golf Team at her school. She took classes at R-Athletics when she was younger and then took those skills to Diving. She loves working with kids and is hoping to share her love of Gymnastics and Diving with her students.

Marissa

Marissa

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Marissa has been practicing gymnastics for 13 years and competing for the last 9 years as a Junior Olympian teammate and a high school athlete. She attends Lowell High School and plans on studying Sports Psychology at University of Florida. Coaching is a way of sharing her gifts with others so that they too will grow to love the sport of gymnastics.

Bronwen

Bronwen

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Coach

At three years of age, Bronwen started gymnastics and by 8 years was competing for R-Athletics. She was a Level 8 State Champion in 2021. She now competes for Forest Hills Gymnastics team and does Crossfit in her spare time. Her favorite thing about coaching is creating relationships with the kids and making sure they are having fun!

Payton

Payton

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Payton was one of the original members of the R-Athletics Junior Olympic team when we opened R doors. She has participated in gymnastics since she was 3 years old. Currently she is a student at Forest Hills Central where she competes in Diving and Gymnastics. The sport is in her blood and now she loves coaching with the girls she used to compete with.

Michelle

Michelle

Front Desk | Birthday Hostess | Team Coach

Michelle was one of Rachel Rydbeck’s former gymnasts and always placed high in All Around Gymnastic competitions. In high school, she broke the school record for bars and balance beam, and was the regional bars champion and 2nd in the State on the balance beam. She was on the All Conference and All State team and named MVP. Michelle loves coaching gymnastics because she gets to be a part of every child reaching his or her goals.

Ethan

Ethan

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

As a well-rounded athlete specializing in tennis, bowling and golf, Ethan is a natural coach. He also excels at school where he is in the top 10 of his class and wants to study Biomedical Engineering at Michigan Tech. His energy and commitment to the sport ensures a fun and challenging class for his students.

Brooke

Brooke

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach

Brooke has participated in multiple sports, including gymnastics. She is attending Central Michigan University to study Child Psychology. She loves the sport and coaching the sport and is convinced gymnastics will be a great foundation for any other athletic pursuit.

Anna Sophia

Anna Sophia

Rec. Coach | Rollin’ Coach | Ninja Zone Coach | Team Coach

Anna Sophia has been involved in gymnastics since she was two years old and has been at R Athletics for 6 years, including two years of competition. She is currently attending Michigan State with plans to study Kinesiology/Exercise Science in college and then pursue her degree in Physical Therapy. She loves the sport of gymnastics, so coaching comes naturally. Sharing her passion with her athletes is a wonderful adventure