Taylor’ed Gymnastics in Cordova creates a welcoming and encouraging atmosphere by cultivating grit, resilience, and commitment to the sport while overcoming challenges as a community of caring athletes. 

No stranger to the sport, owner Britney Taylor-Owens started gymnastics at age three and made nationals five times in high school as a Level 10 gymnast, maintaining the Tennessee record. By the time she graduated in 2009, Britney was facing 18 full-ride college scholarship offers. 

Yet, Britney’s journey with the sport carried deeper complications. Due to the lack of female African American representation in the 90s, she was faced with constant bullying and fell victim to other prejudices. 

Britney was repeatedly told by coaches and teammates she was a failure and would never amount to anything. 

“In 5th grade, I decided to open my own gym. I wasn’t going to treat people like this,” she had told herself, having sketched her first gym layout in high school. 

When it was time to enroll in college, “I just didn’t want to do gymnastics anymore. I was so burnt out from people being mean.” 

Not having another way to pay for college, Britney decided to choose Central Michigan University and quickly rose the ranks as Freshman of the Year, having competed in all four gymnastics events — vault, bars, beams, and floor. 

Unfortunately, the same bullying continued in collegiate sports, and Britney was often picked on for being the only African American girl on her entire team, the second one in the history of her school. After two years, she threw the towel in. 

When Britney was offered a full-ride transfer scholarship to Louisiana State University (LSU), everything changed. She was released from her previous school’s sports commitment, jumping right into the next season. 

“I saw girls that looked like me, and the culture was different. There was camaraderie, and the coaches were fair and gave everyone the same opportunities,” she shared. 

“Knowing I had a supportive system of girls who wanted what was good for me, knowing people did care, shifted my relationship with gymnastics. I was finally able to get back my love for it.” 

True to her word, Britney opened Taylor’ed Gymnastics in 2016, where she offers customized gymnastics training, including competitive training for girls 5 -18, team levels 1-10, Junior Olympics, Xcel Program, and recreational gymnastics for adults. 

I try to imprint on my students self-confidence and awareness. Hopefully, they’ll be able to build mental toughness while having someone care about them beyond just gymnastics.” 

Taylor reflects on the mental strength that gymnastics provided her throughout life. “It’s the type of sport that gives you a mental escape because you can’t be thinking about a boyfriend when you’re 15 feet in the air,” she jokes. 

Gymnastics requires athletes to use all their body muscles — from toenails to fingertips and hamstrings to knees, providing plenty of body awareness while physically strengthening every muscle with double back tucks, round-off layouts onto the beam, and back handsprings. 

“I want all girls to know they can have anything they want, but they must work for it. It’s something you have to earn.” 

IG: @_t.g.t.c._