At this point, who isn’t doing the Harlem Shake? From the University of Georgia Men’s Swimming & Diving team to the KSLA News in Shreveport, LA, to even the Peanuts gang, it seems like pretty much everyone is in on the dance video craze—and, of course, cheer gyms are at the forefront of the trend. Here more »
Monthly Archives: February 2013
Buying an existing gym can be a smart proposition in many ways—ranging from built-in clientele to existing facility and equipment. However, it’s important for both seller and owner to do due diligence beforehand to make sure it doesn’t devolve into a sour deal or ongoing game of “He said, she said.”
Take for example the real-life case of George Strauss*, whose dream of buying his own gym quickly turned into a nightmare for both him and cheer professional Sherry Jones*. Less than a year ago, the two made arrangements for Strauss to buy Jones’ Midwest-based gym—today, each person has a distinctly different account of why that now-defunct deal imploded.
Mo’ meat, mo’ problems? That’s the premise of documentaries like Forks Over Knives, which explore the theory that animal-based and processed foods lead to degenerative disease and other health issues. The popularity of such films—coupled with a mass movement toward healthier eating—points to an overall trend: plant-based diets are hot. A 2012 Vegetarian Resource Group survey found that 7.3 million Americans are vegetarian, while 22.8 million others follow a vegetarian-inclined diet.
At Cheer Factor in Foxboro, Mass., specialty clinics are for athletes at the “top” of their game—literally. Inspired by a similar program at USA Gymnastics, Cheer Factor’s new “T.O.P. (Talent Opportunity Program)” has been a huge hit with athletes from its three locations, as well as area schools. Geared at Level 5 athletes (or those approaching Level 5 status), the T.O.P. clinic has become a coveted invite-only event. “Not only did it serve as a motivational tool and a great way to get all of our kids from different locations together, but it was also a way to start building our Level 5 program for next year,” shares Heather Kalnicki, head tumbling instructor.
Anyone who encounters Cheer Extreme All-Stars’ Courtney Smith-Pope need not wonder where she gets her effervescent passion for the sport—after all, it’s all in the family. Her mom and co-founder, Betsy, acts as the financial and admin guru for all 9 CEA locations around North Carolina, while her sister, Kelly, oversees its Raleigh and Greenville locations. She first met her husband of 10 years, Ben Pope, back when he owned a Premier Athletics gym in Asheville—today he runs CEA’s Winston-Salem location and coaches tumbling and stunting, while their two daughters cheer at the Kernersville location (which Smith-Pope calls “the mothership” of the operation).
Yesterday’s announcement about GrowCheer.org and the push for an independent USASF sparked a range of reactions throughout the industry. While USASF has declined to comment on the matter, we were able to speak with Varsity’s VP of Public Relations Sheila Noone to learn their company’s stance. “Everything Varsity does is with an eye towards what is best for the young athletes we serve,” says Noone. “No one has more of an interest in growing all disciplines of cheerleading than Varsity, and we feel we have been a strong partner to the USASF and its members.” Read what Noone and a sampling of gym owners around the industry had to say in our exclusive round-up.
CheerProfessional has learned that seven industry companies (Cheer Zone, GK Elite, GTM Sportswear, Motionwear, Nfinity, Rebel Athletic & Team Cheer) have united in an effort to facilitate the USASF’s independence from Varsity Brands. Read their full proposal for GrowCheer.ORG here, exclusive to CheerProfessional!
You’re a passionate cheer professional. You work hard to train your athletes and place each one on the best team for his or her ability and the team’s needs. It’s natural to assume everyone will recognize your expertise and respect your decisions.
Unfortunately, there’s always someone who doesn’t see it that way. That someone is usually a parent who seems to want more spotlight shining on their little Ashley. Or perhaps they just don’t understand how progression through the skill levels works. Either way, a parent is second-guessing your decisions.
It’s a lot like the proverbial tree falling in the woods: if a cheer gym doesn’t have a website, is anyone going to hear its marketing message? Not in today’s digital world, according to Jason Silverman of AllStarCheerSites.com. He says that having a dynamic online presence is just as pivotal as having a physical gym—and most potential clients and athletes are going to find your virtual doors before they step through your real ones.
Last month we provided a list for new business owners to follow in order to start up a new business successfully. We elaborated on the first step: picking a business name and registering it with your county (DBA – Doing Business As); this month, we will delve into checklist item number two: deciding on the legal more »
CheerProfessional tapped four of the industry’s cheer leaders for a spirited panel discussion on our industry and its future: Dan Kessler of the Jam Brands; John Newby of Varsity; Pam Puckett of The Cheer Center in Grove City, OH; and Karlette Fettig of Indiana Elite All-Stars in Noblesville, IN. Read part 2 of our juicy Q&A!
CheerProfessional tapped four of the industry’s cheer leaders for a spirited panel discussion on our industry and its future: Dan Kessler of the Jam Brands; John Newby of Varsity; Pam Puckett of The Cheer Center in Grove City, OH; and Karlette Fettig of Indiana Elite All-Stars in Noblesville, IN. Read part 1 of our juicy Q&A!