With future gymnastic Olympic aspirations, Jordan Bowers is well on her way to achieving that goal.
Bowers, entering her sophomore year at Lincoln Southwest, competes in a sport, high school gymnastics, that is nonexistent in the state of Nebraska. Right now she's facing some of the best competition in the world in her age group and beating them.
“My ultimate goal is the Olympics,” Bowers said.
The Lincoln native made the U.S. national team and won the all-around gold in her first international competition at the 2018 Pacific Rim championships in Medellin, Colombia, in late April.
“The most important thing is to have fun,” Bowers told Inside Gymnastics Magazine after the competition. “I was not expecting to win all-around gold at all, especially with my fall on the beam. When my coach told me I had won, I could not believe her; I was so excited and couldn't be more proud of myself and how I performed.”
After the PacRims, where Bowers won four gold medals, Bowers cruised to all-around gold at the Pan American Championships in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in June and added a bronze medal in the all-around at the GK Classic in Columbus, Ohio, in late July. Bowers added silver medals in the uneven bars and balance beam at the GK Classic. Bowers totaled seven gold medals and two bronze in her first two international competitions.
“It just shows how much your hard work pays off,” Bowers said. “I love international competition. You get to meet all new people from all different countries around the world and it's really cool.”
With her quick rise in a sport she has been apart of from the age of 2, training at Solid Rock Gymnastics with coaches Danelle Catlett and Jessica Black in Lincoln, Bowers gained the attention of the University of Oklahoma and committed to the Sooners in the eighth grade.
“I looked at a few other schools, and Oklahoma just felt like home to me,” the Southwest sophomore said. “I love the coaches and all the staff and just the school, just everything about it.”
Bowers practices nearly 30 hours a week during the school year, and increases that total during the summer.
Lincoln Southwest allows block scheduling, so the sophomore is able to train and get her school work in at the same time despite living on the other side of Lincoln.
“Block schedule at Southwest is really nice,” Bowers said. “I go to gym at 7 a.m. until 11, and then I go to third and fourth block, and then I go back to school. The classes that I don't get done I home school.”
Gymnastics is more about the medals for Bowers, but a path to the future.
“It teaches about work ethic, self-discipline, planning things, and it prepares you for life very well,” Bowers said.