About Us

Empire Gymnastics Center

We are the premier gymnastics facility in Lincoln, Ca. Founded on the philosophy that student-athletes can work hard to achieve their personal best while having fun on their journey. Empire has a family-oriented culture where kids of all ages can feel comfortable and excited to challenge themselves to reach their personal goals while developing life skills. Providing gymnastics, tumbling and kinder programs, Empire has something for kids of all ages. Our coaches are enthusiastic, energetic and knowledgeable from prior gym experience and in-house training. Meet some of our coaches & check out our CUSTOMER TESTIMONIALS!

Meet Our Coaches

Owner Mike Carder picture

Coach Mike

Mike Carder is the owner of Empire Gymnastics Center with over 30 years of coaching experience and is very well known with an excellent reputation throughout the Placer County area. He has coached all level of gymnastics and tumbling including athletes at the national level. Mike holds many personal accomplishments in his coaching career including:

*Multiple team State Titles.
* Multiple Individual State and Regional champions.
* A member of the United States Jr National Team.
*3x Northern California coach of the year.
Mike is also well known for his energetic coaching Style. He shares a true passion working with kids and strives to have all athletes become the best they can be!

Coach Tiff employee photo

Coach Tiffany

My name is Tiffany Burns and I am excited to be a part of Empire Gymnastics. I am a preschool teacher here in Lincoln, wife and mother of four (2 girls and 2 boys). My education focused on Early Childhood Education/Development and I have over 17yrs of competitive gymnastics coaching experience. I have coached athletes at all levels and I have a true love for the sport. I want children of any level or ability to feel a sense of pride and accomplishment when it comes to their gymnastics experience. Success to me isn’t about how many champions I have coached, but for how many I have instilled the love of gymnastics in their heart!

coach Justin of empire gymnastics smiling employee photo

Coach Justin

I started gymnastics when I was 4 years old and then joined a competitive team when I was 7. I was actually coached by Mike Carder for the first few years of my competitive career. During my early days of competing I was the level 7 state champion and qualified to Junior Olympic nationals twice. I then moved to WA and competed for the University of Washington men’s gymnastics team for 4 years. During my time there I became an all American on the vault, high-bar, and in the all around. I have been coaching boys and girls gymnastics for the past 4 years in WA and at Woodward West summer camp. Now I’m back in Cali and get to start coaching here at Empire Gymnastics! Gymnastics has been the best thing that has ever happened to me and I’m super excited to get to coach now alongside this awesome staff and share what I’ve learned over the past 17 years!

Watch video of Coach Justin in action below!

Empire gymnastics logo

Coach Anne-Marie

Hi! My name is Anne-Marie. I was born and raised in the greater Sacramento area and I’ve been involved in gymnastics most of my life. I was competing as an elite gymnast and finished 7th all-around in the 1990 Level 10 Nationals. In 1993, I was the State and Regional floor champion & qualified to the Nationals. I have an experience coaching gymnastics at all competitive levels including elite level gymnasts. On a personal note, I continue to love working out, camping and fishing in my free time. I’m love working with kids, believe in all the lessons gymnastics teaches and am excited to start my new journey here at Empire Gymnastics Center!!

Coach smiling for employee photo at empire gymnastics

Coach Sara

I moved to Sacramento from Southern California in 2003 to continue my gymnastic career at California State University Sacramento. I graduated in 2007 with a BA in child development and a minor in Education and became Montessori certified. I started coaching in 2003 and never stopped. I taught Kindergarten for 3 years while coaching part-time when I realized that my passion was not only to teach but also coach. I learned so much about myself and life during my gymnastics career that my goal is to shape young minds, coach them and teach them life lessons along the way. I have been coaching for 14 years and have experience coaching all classes ranging from Kinder, basic, rec and competitive (level 2-10) as well as coaching cheerleading and tumbling. I am happily married with two girls, and when I am not in the gym I enjoy seeing life through the eyes of my kids. I love the beach and being active. My favorite place is Catalina Island and our river house in Arizona. It really is a beautiful thing when a career and passion come together I am truly blessed to be able to do what I love.

Jenn coach employee photo

Coach Jen

Hi my name is Jennifer Christenson, I have been coaching Gymnastics longer than I would like to admit. I began my coaching in 1998 in a small competitive program in the Bay Area. Since that time, I have coached Recreational Gymnastics through level 10 in California producing State, Regional and National medal winners. I have worked under and along with some the finest coaches in NorCal and am a constant student of the sport of gymnastics. I am also a NAWGJ registered judge and judge at competitions in NorCal. I really Love this sport. I spend hours searching for the newest techniques and make sure to always keep myself up to date to give my athletes the best quality coaching I can deliver. My greatest desire, as a coach, is that when an athlete is read to walk away they will carry with them the love of the sport to whatever the next phase is for them being college or a Level 3 moving on to other sports. I whole heartedly believe in Positive Coaching. I am also a credentialed Special Education teacher who has taught for 25 years. I am a wife and a mother of yep, a gymnastics coach. I am truly excited for this new adventure for myself and look forward to learning from all the wonderful staff at Empire Gymnastics.

Coach Mia employee photo

Coach Mia

Hi everyone I’m Coach Mia! I’ve been involved in cheer, stunt, and tumbling since I was 4 years old and have grown up in the gym my whole life. I am continuing my STUNT career at William Jessup University and I can’t wait to still be able to coach at Empire! I have previously instructed Junior cheer programs and working with kids is truly my passion! As a coach my top goals are to bring out the confidence in my students, push them to always get better, and lastly, to never give up! I believe that through coaching I have a chance to be a role model for your child as well as demonstrate and teach valuable lessons that they will be able to apply to multiple aspects of their lives! Can’t wait to see you in the gym! Go Empire!

Coach Hayden employee photo

Coach Hayden

Hi, I am Hayden, I have been involved in gymnastics for most of my life starting at the young age of 4, I then continued to compete in the sport for 9 years. During my years of competition, I was Level 5 State Champion in 2013 as well as All-Star Team member that same year and again in 2018 as a Level 9. I enjoy working with kids and prior to working at Empire I worked in at a Day Care. I am my happiest when I am outdoors, camping, hiking, and swimming.

Coach at empire gymnastics smiling in employee photo

Coach Faith

Hi! My name is Faith Warta and I’m super excited to be a part of the Empire family. I grew up in Sonoma County, but my family and I moved to Plumas Lake in 2013. I was involved in gymnastics starting at a young age and competed in what was called “Excel Team” for a few years. I’ve always loved gymnastics and I would practice for fun when I was little all the time. Soon after I graduated high school I knew I wanted to work with kids, so I was able to begin coaching at a small gym called Youngsters Inc. where I was lucky to meet wonderful children and families, gain lasting friendships, and valuable experience. After studying early childhood education in college, I worked as a substitute teacher, and later as a pre-kindergarten teacher. While I enjoy teaching children in a school setting, my true passion remains sharing my joy for the sport of gymnastics with children and seeing them be as excited for it as I was as a child. Being a part of children’s lives is very special to me.

While I’m not coaching, I love to spend time outside hiking and camping, going on trips, and I love going to the beach!

Coach ashley employee photo at empire gymnastics

Coach Ashley

My name is Ashley and I am so excited to be a part of the Empire family! I began martial arts at 5 years old, and after building up flexibility and strength for 10 years, I switched to cheering and tumbling. I cheered and stunted on my high school cheer team while simultaneously taking tumbling classes at Just Tumble. I have been coaching gymnastics for 5 years and love working with kids of all ages. I am passionate about coaching gymnastics and am absolutely in love with the sport. Some of my favorite things to do include drawing and writing, watching movies, and going to the beach!

coach from empire gymnastics employee photo

Coach Mariah

My name is Mariah. I grew up in San Jose, Ca and my family and I moved to Lincoln in 2012. I have 3 boys and in our free time we enjoy camping, fishing, and just about anything outdoors as a family. I have been coaching gymnastics off and on for the last 25 years. I started gymnastics at 3 and fell in love with the sport immediately. An injury my freshman year of high school ended my gymnastics career as an athlete, but I was offered a coaching position by my coach at the time. I have had other careers and I always came back to gymnastics. Working with children is what I am meant to do. There are so many life skills this sport has to offer. Teaching confidence, coordination and compassion through gymnastics is a blessing. I am so happy to be a part of the Empire family!

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Coach Brooke

My name is Brooke. I am an AP and honors student at Lincoln High School. I love learning and I am hoping to go to UCLA to double major in film and aerospace engineering. I have many hobbies from reading, writing, dance, theater, acting, and art. I started gymnastics when I was 3 years old and fell in love! I was a gymnast for 11 years and gymnastics led me to dance on the Lincoln High School dance team, where I have danced the last 3 years. I love being able to teach kids in the sport of gymnastics and I look forward to watching them continue to grow and learn here at Empire!