Sticking the landing

Junior Olivia Mangin is captain of the NHS gymnastics team and she’s doing a flippin’ good job


Photo by K. Craig

Mangin in the middle of her beam routine.

Lexi Leisure and Lauren Patrick

Not many people can say that they can do flips and aerials. Some people even struggle to do a cartwheel. Junior Olivia Mangin is a gymnast, and she has been perfecting skills like these since she was two years old.

“My mom put me in ‘Mommy and Me’ classes and I stuck with it,” Mangin said.

Those class helped get her started and since then Mangin has grown up with a support system that pushed her to continue.

“My family has been incredibly supportive during my entire gymnastics career by encouraging me and always being positive,” Mangin said. “Meets can be pretty time consuming and yet they still come and support me.”

My goals are to stay consistent during competitions and to not let my nerves get to me when competing, but to enjoy it. Mangin has been able to develop new skills and progress to higher levels throughout the years.

“My proudest accomplishment was probably when I was a level four,” Mangin said. “I won fourth place at the state competition that year.” Mangin is driven by trying to improve her score from her previous meets. She always wants to give her best. “My goals are to stay consistent during competitions and to not let my nerves get to me when competing, but to enjoy it,” Mangin said.

This is Mangin’s third year on the NHS gymnastics team. She says that her favorite overall is her teammates.

“I absolutely love my teammates and how much fun we have together,” Mangin said. “They are beyond supportive and constantly spread encouragement and positivity.”

According to junior Natalie Sturgeon, one of the managers of the gymnastics team, the fond feelings are mutual.

“Liv is genuinely one of the kindest people I’ve met,” Sturgeon said. “She’s a great person to talk to and is great friend. She’s an extremely talented gymnast.”

Mangin has also been inspired and supported by her coach, Jody Kiovsky, throughout her gymnastics career.

“My coach has influenced me to step out of my comfort zone and to challenge myself to do things I was scared of or that I didn’t think I could do,” Mangin said.

Kiovsky is head coach and in her seventeenth season with the Millers. She has high standards for Mangin.

“Mangin has matured in skill and leadership on the team. She was named captain of this year’s team [and] provides stability to the team,” Kiovsky said.

Throughout Mangin’s experience in gymnastics, she says that one of her favorite, lasting memories was during her first year on NHS’s gymnastics team.

“My freshman year at sectionals, every girl that competed beam for our team stayed on and hit their routines,” Mangin said. “[This] was the first time that happened in NHS gymnastics so it was really cool to be a part of that.”

Mangin has also shown growth through the years, working through the obstacles to continue advancing her skills.

“I would say overall I have improved,” Mangin said. “I mean there are setbacks in anything, but despite those I have improved.”

Kiovsky has seen Mangin improve over the years as well, and has high hopes for her future this season.

“My goals for [Mangin] would be for her to advanced out of sectionals to regionals on her best event which is vault. I would also love to see her have an all-around score of 32 or above,” Kiovsky said.

When faced with what the future might bring, and what she hopes might happen next, Mangin continues to look forward and plans to just keep on enjoying the sport.

“While I’m not sure what next season will hold,” Mangin said. “The dream is to finish this season well, and to have fun [while] staying positive.”