Local gymnastics programs focus on safety

Local gymnastics programs focus on safety
Source: KFDA
Source: KFDA
Source: KFDA
Source: KFDA

AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - Since the USA gymnastics scandal broke, the sport has been under a national spotlight.

Gymnastics programs in our area are aware of the attention, and want all involved to know safety is the top priority in a sport that requires close contact and trust.

"Protect the youth that go through the kids gymnastics program here at Amarillo College," said Wes Condray-Wright, Director of Communications at Amarillo College. "Specifically, all of them go through extensive background checks to make sure there's no red flags."

Cheer Texas serves gymnasts and cheerleaders alike, with safety at the forefront in an open-concept gym.

"We have a whole viewing area where parents sit out there and watch and can look over the gym nothing is hidden or behind any closed doors here at Cheer Texas," said Logan Stegall, All Star Program Director at Cheer Texas.  "You can see from downstairs and upstairs."

"They can be there to watch their kid and make sure everything is going okay and be there to celebrate in their successes," said Condray-Wright.

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Both programs have rigorous training in place to protect every athlete that walks through their doors.

"Everyone that coaches all star cheer is USASF certified and green-lighted through a background check," said Stegall. "In order to coach All Star cheer, they've made safety priority."

"They all go through what's called 'safe sport certification,' which is the actual certification that the US Olympics team use to make sure there are practice and policies in place to prevent incidents like what just happened nationally," said Condray-Wright.

While gymnastics will continue to be in headlines, those involved hope athletes and their parents never quit.

"Don't let circumstances of things happen tarnish the sport or keep your kid from doing something that they're truly passionate about," said Stegall.

Gymnasts hope the bravery of those who spoke out about what happened at USA gymnastics will make the sport safer worldwide.

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