Myla Hendricks was once a shy little girl. But she has come out of her shell thanks to team sports.

The Williams-Ledger Elementary School pre-kindergarten student brings joy to the gym room when she bounces in for Tiny Gym class, said her coach, Mo Vasquez, GymKix cheer program director.

“I am so impressed with this little gymnast. She went from being a student who would hardly interact to a student who is now full of hugs and smiles,” Vasquez said. “At only 5 years old, she already has the determination to go far in anything she sets her mind to.”

For Myla, it’s more about having a good time than dedication to the sport of gymnastics.

“The bars are super fun. I love getting to do cool tricks,” Myla said.

Her mom, Mica Hendrix, is especially proud of the positive changes in her young daughter.

“Myla has had so much fun at GymKix. She has learned so much. The coaches focus on skills but still make it fun to learn new things,” Hendricks said. “Myla does a lot of things alone. So this is an opportunity for her to do things with other people. She is very social and outgoing and friendly.”

She said gymnastics also taught Myla discipline and teamwork.

“At first, she was all over the place and did not know what to do. Now she has learned what to expect,” Hendricks said “It really helps her work as a team, which is important since she is an only child. She also has learned about sportsmanship,”.

Myla started taking gymnastics when her military family lived in Alaska.

Upon moving to Fort Hood, Myla’s father deployed and she got back on the mat. She has been taking gymnastics for a year.

“When she got to GymKix, she got a lot more one-on-one attention. She really liked it,” Hendricks said. “Her father liked to see her do gymnastics. The two of them Facetime every day now that he is deployed.”

Described as a wiggle-worm who jumps around, bounces, and never sits still, Myla also enjoys making arts and crafts and loves drawing with any medium — paint, markers, pencils.

Her mother posted one of her drawings on the Internet and said it went viral all over the world.

She also loves reading and heads to the library to check out books at least twice a month.

Myla would like to be a zoologist when she grows up because she loves animals. But she will never become a veterinarian because “they have to give shots.”

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