Meet our Coaches

Lakettes and Lakers staff  members are fun, educated, and dedicated to the kids they work with! 


In house training on safety, technique, and class set up is provided to all of our coaches.  Nationally accredited by USAG, coaches are nationally safety certified and many of our coaches hold nationally accredited certifications in both gym safety and technique training.  Take a look at our staff and see why they make us an “An Incredible Place to train”.

Matthew & Heather Kowalczyk: Owners 

Heather Kowalczyk - I’ve had a passion for gymnastics from the first class I took at age 3.  My parents owned and managed Lakettes & Lakers for over 25 years before my husband and I took it over in 2002.  Competing gymnastics for over 15 years has given me a knowledge of the sport that is acquired through first hand experience.  As a gymnast, I receiveed State & Regional awards throughout the USAG program. I then moved onto Collegiate gymnastics at Kent State University as I studied Health & Physical Education.  In 1998 I returned home to coach and assist in the family business.  Certifications include USAG club member, professional member & USAG safety certification.  Additional education includes: Business Foundation courses, various Gymnastic Spotting and technique certifications, and CPR.  Currently, I oversee all coaches, classes and teams,

train staff, plan special events and programming, as well as coaching students when needed.



Matthew Kowalczyk - Marrying into this family owned and operated business I add insight for growing the business.  I also, address and implement  improvements to the facility and functionality of the program.   My background is in public relations and accounting.  Prior job experience includes 10 years of maintenance and ground keeping at Family First Sports Park.  I have a strong value for family and the importance of growth as a family, which makes it a joy to add my perspective to Lakettes & Lakers Gymnastics.


Monica Karnes- Office Manager- Also, including all recreational class and team

registration & billing, birthday party, field trip & private lesson scheduling.



Chris Gilbert - I am the Head Coach of the Women’s Optional Team. I have been coaching for 13 years, 9 of which have been here at Lakettes and Lakers Gymnastics. I hold a Bachelors Degree in Biology from Penn State and a Masters Degree in Education from Edinboro. I am a professional member of the USAG and hold First Aid Certifications for Adult, Child, and Infant as well as Safety Certification. I have coached a number of State champions as well as Regional and National Qualifiers. I believe you get out of gymnastics what you put in, so each child has the ability to be successful as long as they are trying their

personal best.


Jacob Marks- Head Men's Team Coach, Recreational boys Director and assistant Woman's Team Coach for Levels 2-5




Mary Hawley- Head Team Program Director. Head coach for Woman's Competitive Teams levels 3 and 4.  Oversees and manages all aspects of the Competitive Team Program. 



Other staff include: 

Katie Cogswell-Mattern- Team Coach

Brian Edwards - Parkour Director & coach

Emma Eisert - Pre-school Recreational coach,  KNO and Party coach

Kayla Fries - Jr. Instructor for Pre-school, Recreational and Developmental Teamcoach

Valerie Kavelish- Recreational coach, KNO and party coach

Ericka Torain- Recreational coach

Stacy Sampsell- Recreational coach, KNO and party coach


Daytime Hours vary
Mon. - Fri. 4 - 9 p.m.
Saturday & Sunday: Hours vary      




8296 Peach Street
Erie, PA 16509

Tel: 814-864-9363


2nd location

6813 West Ridge Rd

Fairview, Pa 16415

© Lakettes all rights reserved.

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