Elite Tumbling opens after pandemic delay
By Taylor Burnette
For The Ironton Tribune
SOUTH POINT — Elite Tumbling Center made a recent return to their new building in South Point after their opening was delayed by the pandemic.
Garret McGuire, the owner and founder of Elite Tumbling center, started his business in 2017 after attending Trinity Valley college in Texas and working for many tumbling gyms and around the area.
He wanted to create a unique tumbling experience, focusing not only on form and hard work, but providing a space where students can be “400 percent themselves.”
“One of my goals for Elite is just for the girls to have a place that they can come in and feel confident, and get away from school and family and just whatever os going on in their life,” McGuire said. “I know that [for] me growing up in a cheer gym was a really, really good outlet for me to have and that’s why I created some of my best friendships and best memories. So, I’m trying to build an environment around here where kids can come to the gym and feel comfortable and be themselves.”
McGuire also focuses his teaching on proper form, making sure his students have perfected their skill before moving onto their next step.
“I just don’t like sloppy skills, so we like to really focus on technique and make sure they mastered each level before they move on to the next step,” McGuire said.
The gym is currently offering classes, finally being able to open their doors on June 1 after the pandemic, which was a couple months later than McGuire had intended.
Students must wash their hands as soon as they enter the building, and are allowed only one guardian to stay and observe. Students are separated and have little contact, McGuire said, and instructors wear masks at all times.
Elite Tumbling offers a range of classes for different age groups, including recreational classes once a week to cheer training. McGuire also said that they will now begin offering All-Star cheerleading for kids ages 4 to 12.
This has been a hope of McGuire’s for a long time, and he said he feels Elite’s teams have a very high chance of making it far in the All-Star cheer finals.
Although he said his second priority is having the most competitive cheer program around, his overall priority is providing his students with an opportunity they may not be able to get anywhere else.
“My first priority … is giving these kids some exposure, to more than just this area,” McGuire said. “I really am excited about taking my cheer teams outside of the state for competitions, because I just feel like it’s really good for them. I love all-star cheerleading, because my kids are on a team with kids that they would never be friends with because they’re all from different schools. So, it’s a team made up of kids from all different schools, all different ages and they get to travel together. I’m just really glad that I’m giving these kids … an opportunity to see more than just Huntington.”
McGuire began his own tumbling journey at age 4, going on to attend college at Trinity Valley in Texas on a scholarship. The team has won a total of ten national titles. In Texas, McGuire was introduced to a new world of cheer knowledge, something he brought back to his gym in the Tri-State.
“Once I went there and cheered there, my knowledge of cheer and coaching just went to a new level,” McGuire said. “I learned … techniques and expectations, and basically how to run an all-star cheer program on a caliber that I would have never been able to learn without experiencing Trinity Valley.”
Although he worked at other area gyms, he wanted to work for himself and focus on what he found most important training. In Texas, where he later went back to coach for a season, he saw a very different type of teaching style that he brought back to his business.
“Gyms in Texas are run completely differently than the gyms are around here,” McGuire said. “The kids are held to different standards. The coaching style and the athletes are just on another level. … I really try to take what I learned in Texas and bring that back to this area, and that’s why I feel like I have a reputation of being a pretty intense coach, but I really like to get the most out of my athletes. That’s why our teams are going to be pretty strong.”
McGuire said he is very appreciative of the parents that have been with his business since they began in a small building in Chesapeake, watching it grow into a larger space with more programs.
McGuire currently has 73 students throughout his different classes, and is accepting new ones. He encourages those interested to call the gym or to email him.
Elite Tumbling Center is located at 76 Township Road 1343. For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/EliteTumblingCenter.
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