Spirals is home to a great staff. Spirals staff members are hard working, determined, ambitious, friendly, and they love to see children grow and thrive. Please take a moment to get to know us, then drop by to meet us in person!
Jima King Owner
My name is Jima King. I was born and raised in Arlington, TX. I graduated from University of North Texas with a Bachelor of Science. Fresh out of college and with the help of my parents, Jack and Tina Richie, I founded Spirals Gymnastics in 1982. Spirals has moved several times from its original location in Grand Prairie, and we have grown with each move. We’ve created many great programs that make Spirals more than just a gymnastics school.
My vision for Spirals really took a turn in 2002, when we added a swimming pool to our facility. Our goal was to build a curriculum that focuses not solely on winning, but on goal setting and recognizing each individual’s accomplishments. In 2004, we created Ed-venture Camp, a program that truly stands out from all the rest. The first year of our After School Program was in 2005, and now we are thriving more than ever. In 2012, we created Ed-venture Kids Academy, a private preschool with a great curriculum, focusing on Kindergarten readiness and physical education.We have recently changed our name to Spirals Gym and Ed-venture Kids Center, reflecting our wide variety of programs.
My parents are still with us at the age of 83, and they have seen it all. I have two wonderful children, Abbey and Grayson. My husband, Simon, is a sounding board as we move forward. I have two dogs, named Skylar and Sassy. We have truly remained a family-owned and operated business, which makes me very proud. It has been quite an amazing journey, and I look forward to many more exciting years to come!
Amy Strouth Gymnastics Program Director
• Graduated from Duncanville High School • Graduated from UT- Arlington
Hello, my name is Amy Strouth, and I have worked for Spirals since late 1999. I have been involved in gymnastics most of my life, first as a competitive gymnast and now as an instructor for over 25 years. What I find great about the sport is that not only are children learning skills that build strength, coordination and balance, but also discipline and confidence in themselves and their abilities. It is wonderful to see the excitement when a student does a skill by themselves for the first time. I am grateful for the opportunity to work with each student and help them reach their potential.
Alex Spence Gymnastics Instructor
• Graduated Hobbs H.S. 2008 • F.I.D.M. Los Angeles; Major in Fashion Design and Merchandising • El Centro Dallas; Major in Fine Arts and Studio Art graduating in 2015 • CPR and First Aid certified • Certified in childcare; infant- elementary • Swim Team and Lifeguard for over 12 years; made state 3 years • Instructed gymnastics 3 years, instructed swimming 8 years • Childcare provider 4 years
My name is Alex Spence. I was raised in Southern California, but currently I live in Grand Prairie. I have taught and been around children my entire life. I am the eldest of 6 siblings and helped my mother take care of them. I am very passionate about teaching and sharing the skills I have with my students. I look at every child as a canvas. Being an artist, I want only to inspire their creativity, and their love for the activities they do here, home, and at school. I hope to help each child become the masterpiece I believe they are by helping them reach their full potential. Most importantly, I want to teach them to embrace their uniqueness, use it in a positive way, and never be ashamed of who they are. The things I teach here are what I am most passionate about, and if I can share that and help a child feel the same way about those skills as I do, then I know that I have helped that child learn about themselves and inspired them to be creative.
Aaron Samano Swimming Director
• Graduated University of Texas-Pan American • Inventor of Swim P.A.L.S. • Farrier (Horse shoer) since 1984 • CPR Certified
My name is Aaron Samano. I was born and raised in Hildago, a town in South Texas. I graduated from University of Texas-Pan American with a major of Kinesiology and a minor in Biology.I have coached swimming for 29 years, and I have coached gymnastics for more than 30 years. I have three sons, Zach (24), Luke and Matthew (18)… twins! I have worked for the Spirals family since 2000. I enjoy teaching children and helping them build fundamental skills in gymnastics and swimming.
Ally Johnson Ed-venture Kids Academy Director/ After School Registrar
• Child Development Associate (Preschool) • CPR/First Aid/AED Certified • Food Manager Certified
My name is Ally Johnson. I am originally from Lincoln, England but I have lived in Mansfield since 2007. I am married with 3 children and 1 grand daughter. I started my early childhood career 20 years ago in the military child development centers. I became a certified, licensed home day care provider to families of US troops. I also taught preschool for the United States Air Force child development centers. It is there that I received my Child Development Associate in Preschool. I went on to be a site director and Training Specialist for Camp Fire USA in Albuquerque, NM.
After relocating to Texas in 2007 I was the employee trainer and then Assistant Director for Child Time Learning Center in Arlington. I joined Spirals in 2012 where, as well as teaching my wonderful preschoolers, I am also the After School training and licensing administrator.
Preschool is my passion. I am mostly rewarded when working directly with children. I love each child’s individuality and I enjoy figuring out what each child loves to do so I can better help foster their own passions.
Abbey Watson After School Program Director
• Graduated Martin High School 2010 • Studies at University of Texas at Arlington • CPR certified
My name is Abbey Watson. I have been with Spirals Gymnastics since 2006. I graduated from Martin High School in 2010. I am currently attending the University of Texas at Arlington for graphic designs. I live here in Arlington and am a mother of two beautiful babies, who have 4 legs! I have lived in Arlington my entire life and am the daughter of Jima King, the owner of Spirals Gymnastics. I enjoy working with children because I feel they have just as much to offer me as I do them. During the school year, I am the After School Director, and in the summer I am a Camp Counselor. I have always enjoyed my time with children, and I look forward to many more years to come!
Lisa Partain Ed-venture Camp Director
• BA – Western Governors University – 2012 – Interdisciplinary Studies (K-8) • Certified in Elementary Education (EC-6 Generalist & 4-8 Generalist) • CPR/First Aid Certified • Assistant Preschool Teacher for Spirals – 2011/2012 school year • Director of Operations for Pump It Up 10/2008 to 9/2010 • Public Relations Manager – GTE/Verizon – 10/1993 to 12/2007
My name is Lisa Partain. I am married to my husband Rob and we have a daughter, Cerina, who is beautiful inside and out. I also have a talented son, Robbie, who attends UNT in Denton and two grown step-daughters, Tricia and Machel, who have blessed us with three wonderful grandchildren.
I recently graduated from Western Governor’s University and earned my Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Studies. I am certified in Elementary Education (Early Childhood through 8th grade). I found my way to Spirals Gym when my youngest daughter attended Ms. Tammy’s pre-K program several years ago, and soon after she began taking swimming lessons from Coach Aaron. I was impressed with the level of competency and dedication of all the coaches, teachers and staff. I’ve been hooked as a Spirals enthusiast ever since.
After 16 years in the public relations field, I was given the opportunity to pursue my dream of becoming a teacher and began attending college to obtain my teaching degree. That dream became a reality in December 2012. I have always enjoyed helping children have fun and reach their goals. I think every child has the potential to learn and grow – intellectually, physically and mentally. I enjoy being a part of helping our summer campers have fun and attain new goals each summer. The campers and my staff always make each day a fun, new adventure. Spirals is a fun and rewarding place to work!