MANATEE COUNTY - Lakewood Ranch Gymnastics has become a pipeline, of sorts, to the national spotlight for young gymnasts.
Last spring, Laura and David Parraga at the gym sent a couple of their gymnasts out to a nationally-renowned training center in Texas.
"We've had quite a few and recognition brings colleagues out with scholarship offers, and that is just the beginning."
Recently, a very special 10-year-old was invited back, all expenses paid, by Bela and Marta Karolyi.
Bo Bischoff is one of top 15 nationally in her age group. "It's the holy ground of gymnastics training; it’s exciting, and a great motivation factor to go out there. It also puts Lakewood Ranch on the map for gymnastics," says Laura Parraga.
"It’s exciting to think you are one of top 15 ten-year-olds," says Bischoff.
Bo's mom was a gymnast and a college cheerleader, so Bo knows cartwheel…and gymnastics as a whole.
"She has great strength and flexibility, and we really enjoy coaching her. She is very coachable," says Laura.
At the training center, there will be a lot of compulsories included with the gymnastics. She will be measured and timed in rope-climb, leg lifts and chin-ups, which she excels at. Her favorite gymnastic event -- after long deliberation – is the beam. “I like the pressure of knowing it’s just beam between you and the floor, and falling," says Bo.
She is an admitted daredevil, but still has that side that appreciates being put on a pedestal. “I love that feeling of being 1 of 15; that feeling of being treated like a princess."
"There is nothing better or more satisfying than seeing her rewarded," says Laura.
Her reward, and the trip out west, comes December 4th.