Asheville Gymnastics Staff

Kermit Belton - General Manager

Kermit Belton is our General Manager and Coach. Coach Kermit has 25 years of experience as a gymnast and as a coach. With several State Championships to his credit, Coach Kermit was voted the 2009-2010 SC Mens’ Gymnastics Coach Of The Year. Kermit is a well rounded coach having the abilities to coach both boy and girl gymnasts. He is also a Cheerleading and Tumbling Coach. Kermit has been through the various transitions of Asheville Gymnastics since the year 2000. Kermit is the loving father of Faith Belton.

Chrissy Lawing - Team (XCEL) Coach and Administration

Chrissy was a competitive young gymnast who worked up to level 9 before transitioning to other sports as an older teen. She is in her 7th year of coaching at Asheville Gymnastics and has taught all recreational levels ranging from pre-schoolers up to our most advanced rec classes (Level 3/4). She is currently excited to be working with the competitive XCEL team, as well as behind the scenes as part of the office staff team. When not at the gym, you can find her hammering away in her home studio as a burgeoning metalsmith and jeweler!

Josh Parke - Compulsory Team

Joshua trained competitively at Asheville Gymnastics throughout high school and has worked for Asheville Gymnastics for three years as a preschool instructor and compulsory girls instructor (USA Gymnastics levels 3-5). Joshua attends UNC-Asheville, enjoys doing gymnastics, reading and spending time with friends and family. Joshua is CPR and first aid certified.

Sophia Ahmad - Rec Coach

Sophia currently teaches preschool, level 1, 2 and 3/4 and says, "These levels range from focusing on coordination and social skills, to feeling comfortable and confident with basic foundation skills. My goal is to build strength, confidence and agility in my students. It is extremely rewarding to me when my students understand that they are more capable than they may believe and surprise themselves." She was born in Oregon, and has been involved in gymnastics for seven years. She competed for 3 out of the 7 years and then became a dancer. "Moving my body is an expression that has always felt natural and enticing. As a coach I get to share my passion of learning new ways to explore the limits of the body and mind. Aside from coaching I am a student at UNCA, and enjoy dancing, acro yoga, composing music, hiking and biking."

Kiah Abendroth - Rec Coach

Kiah Abendroth was a competitive gymnast for many of her younger years. She enjoys teaching and began assisting with the recreational classes at her gym around the age of 13. At Asheville Gymnastics, you can find Kiah teaching beginning recreational classes. Outside of the gym, Kiah is a professional trumpet player and music instructor (M.M North Carolina School of the Arts). Kiah also recently completed a two year program in Interfaith Studies and is passionate about walking in the world in a loving way.

Allen Smith - Parkour

Allen Smith is a North Carolina native who was born and raised in the Asheville and Black Mountain areas. After growing up playing in the forests and rivers of the beautiful mountains of WNC, a sport like parkour just comes naturally to him. He started training in the discipline of parkour to prepare for his goal of being a contestant on American Ninja Warrior, but the hobby took on a life of its own and has become a true calling. His teaching style focuses on safety, self discipline, self confidence, and self determination. Besides parkour and freerunning, some of Allen's hobbies include making music, hiking, golfing, metal detecting, computer technology, and gaming; he has a professional background in graphic design, web development, construction, and craft woodworking.

Kaity Essel - Team Coach, Summer Camp and Administration

Kaity has a creative and adventurous spirit. She started her athletic career in gymnastics then went on to express herself through competitive dance and cheerleading. Throughout high school she taught gymnastics in Pennsylvania then earned a B.S. in Health Promotion from Coastal Carolina University. After college she went on to receive a Yoga Alliance Registered Teacher Certification and Group Fitness/Kids Group Fitness Certifications. Her other hobbies include singing and experiencing live music, cosmetology, mixed media art, camping, watching movies, and guiding zipline canopy tours. You can catch her smiling face at the gym behind the front desk, teaching our Girls Team classes, Summer Camp and participating in Adult Gym and Parkour classes.