2019-2020 MS Meet Schedule
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I believe in gymnastics. I believe in a sport that teaches among other things, responsibility, discipline, accountability, time management, dedication, work ethic, and how to deal with success and failure. I believe in a sport that is not perfect but gives you perfection to strive for. I love the sport of gymnastics for many reasons but what I love most is it allows me to work with amazing athletes and those athletes make me strive to be a better person every day. I have witnessed young ladies win against all odds. I’ve seen them fight through injuries and come back stronger. I’ve seen them continue to struggle with skills yet still be happy for a teammate’s success. I’ve seen them laugh and cry through everything life throws at them. I believe in gymnastics because it encompasses so much of what life really is. There are thousands of coaches out there who feel this way. They want nothing more than to see their athletes be the best they can be in gymnastics and in life. It breaks my heart that gymnastics clubs all over the country are struggling because of the continued chaos surrounding our sport. Clubs are suffering because of the actions of a sick few, and I hope those few are punished severely. A situation those gym owners and coaches had no part in or even knowledge of. Owners who genuinely love the sport and want to promote the positive things the sport teaches are having to let go of valuable staff or closing their doors. It is hard to sit back and just watch these things happen.
We have a governing body on the brink of implosion with no president, lawsuits, attacks from all directions, and a sick man rotting in jail who has lead the general public to believe actions such as his are prevalent within our sport. The one positive is that hundreds of young ladies have found their voices and are speaking out against monsters like the one they were faced with. My heart hurts for all those young ladies and I pray no athlete ever has to go through anything so vile again.
USA Gymnastics is taking steps to correct and improve the organization. I believe we as a community of club owners need to take appropriate steps in our own gyms to ensure the safety of our athletes and continue to share our passion for this sport that has done so much for ourselves. The healing process will no doubt be a long one. Longer for some than for others. In order for those of us who love this sport and want to pass on the many benefits and blessings we have received from it, we must begin that process and start moving forward today. Today, we begin to heal as a community. Clearly USA Gymnastics has initiated the search for appropriate leadership to guide the organization in a positive direction. I trust knowledgeable and experienced leadership will be identified who has been part of the gymnastics community and knows the different aspects of the sport. Someone who can relate to the athletes, coaches, judges, and gym owners. A person who loves the sport and genuinely cares about the community, and the success of the sport locally, nationally, and internationally. Someone who can help with healing for all. #ibelieveingymnastics
As part of our outreach for Child Abuse Prevention Month, the USA Gymnastics Safe Sport Department recently conducted a webinar on “How to Talk About Child Sexual Abuse Prevention,” which is available in the webinar archive. I have included a link to the webinar because it provides some of the guidance you and your professional members have requested for addressing safe sport issues. I also encourage you to share with the professional members in your states and regions. And, as always, please contact Toby Stark, our director of safe sport, if you have any questions. We appreciate your time and dedication to our athlete’s safety and well-being.