The Culture of Vertical Athletics Part 1

Vertical Athletics is dedicated to equipping the next generation of gymnasts with the skills and mindset to master and excel in the world of gymnastics.

We believe we have been given an opportunity to bring families, athletes, and coaches into a healthy culture of gymnastics. Our goal is to steward what we are given and remain accountable to our values and our drivers. These are at the heart of Vertical and we wouldn’t exist without them.



Health is a paramount priority for us, and we achieve it by placing our families first, safeguarding our rest, and striking a harmonious balance between dedicated effort and adequate recovery.

Just as a marathon runner wouldn’t indulge in donuts, soda, and sleep deprivation on the eve of a race, we view gymnastics as having its own rhythm. Our leadership team is committed to safeguarding our health, recognizing that this ensures the well-being of both our athletes and staff. We set aside time for personal rejuvenation, allowing us to revitalize others. The demands of coaching and participating in gymnastics are substantial, making our own health vital for successfully navigating this marathon, as gymnastics is a marathon, not a sprint.

2. Authenticity

Authenticity is at the core of our approach. We don’t do fake. Instead, we coach through genuine relationships and foster an environment where families and children feel comfortable being open and honest. Our leadership is guided by vulnerability and transparency.

Imagine a world where transparency prevailed in all relationships? Not just between owners and employees, but also between parents and coaches, coaches and athletes, and athletes and parents. We firmly embrace honesty, vulnerability, and transparency as the pillars that shape the course of our relationships. At Vertical, we believe these three attributes determine our trajectory. Our goal is to cultivate enduring relationships that withstand life’s challenges and endure through the toughest storms. Mentorship matters!

4. Trust

Lean into Awkward. We build trust, character, and relationships of tomorrow by engaging in the tough conversations today, in order to best serve families and athletes.

Trust plays a pivotal role in gymnastics. We guide athletes of varying ages and abilities through intricate movements demanding strength, agility, flexibility, and mental resilience. Equally significant is the trust we establish with parents, as we manage their investment in terms of time, finances, and their most cherished possession – their child. These moments often entail challenging discussions, ranging from disappointments, setbacks, and injuries to character development, guidance, and triumph over obstacles. These are tough but necessary conversations that we willingly embrace instead of shove under the rug. The same principle applies to our interactions within the staff, ownership team, and coach-to-athlete relationships. We are committed to addressing uncomfortable or difficult topics head-on, ensuring the cultivation of trust and enduring relationships that withstand the test of time.

5. Excellence

Give your all. We use the gifts and talents we were given to the best of our abilities each day. We hope to “give” glory instead of “get” glory. Our job is to work together as a team, and we care about making your experience at Vertical Athletics truly life changing.

We wholeheartedly commit to this viewpoint. Every day, we harness our unique ability and take it to its fullest potential. Our aim is to radiate God’s glory through our efforts, emphasizing contribution over personal gain. With our primary responsibility being, to function as a cohesive team, we hope that you feel your experience at Vertical is truly transformative. The act of giving is profoundly affirming. Knowing that we can positively impact someone else’s day, life, or moment is immensely gratifying. We firmly believe that these “glory” moments, marked by teamwork and collective dedication, hold greater significance than any accolades received. They encapsulate the essence of a team working in harmony to achieve remarkable outcomes for the next generation.

6. Empowerment

Our heart, Your Gymnastics. We empower those with like minded goals to lead themselves through their gymnastics journey. We trade pride for teachability and humility in order to progress more effectively. 

Empowerment lies at the core of our philosophy. We empower individuals who have a goal and nurturing their ability to guide themselves on their gymnastics journey. In this pursuit, we exchange pride for teachability and embrace humility as a catalyst for more effective progress. Though gymnastics does take a certain level of uniformity and “the pursuit of perfection”, our gymnasts know that they are empowered to add their own flair and maximize their strengths. Athletes who understand this, are less likely to “burn out” and “strive” because they feel free.

7. Communication

Downshift. We choose to slow down and communicate clearly today, so that we can move forward faster, tomorrow.

By slowing down and ensuring that our messages are crystal clear, we reduce the risk of misunderstandings, errors, and misalignment. This deliberate approach to communication fosters trust among our team members and families, paving the way for more efficient and productive collaboration. We understand that when we invest the time and effort in clear communication today, we’re laying a strong foundation for successful execution tomorrow. It’s a strategic choice that empowers us to navigate challenges more effectively and give you time back!

8. Feedback

Hear Hear! We believe healthy feedback is a two-way street. We welcome opportunities to hear what is in your heart, and we commit to clarifying what is in ours.

Feedback is an invaluable two-way channel of communication within our gym, benefiting both our dedicated staff and the families we serve. For our gymnasts, feedback is a crucial tool for their growth and improvement. It helps them fine-tune their ability to make corrections and ultimately become even more effective learners. In this dynamic sport, continuous improvement is essential, and feedback from coaches to gymnasts/families provides them with insights that enable them to have a positive experience. On the flip side, feedback from families is equally vital, as it ensures that our gym remains a place where the needs and expectations of our young athletes are met. It allows us to maintain open lines of communication, address concerns promptly, and adapt our programs where possible, to better suit the goals and aspirations of our gymnasts. It’s a reciprocal relationship where feedback strengthens the bonds between staff and gymnasts/families, ultimately enhancing the gymnastics journey for everyone involved.

9. Celebration

Put it on the board. If you’re not having fun, you’re doing it wrong! We make time to celebrate the little wins that create a big victory.

“Put it on the board” is not just a saying at our gym; it’s a fundamental philosophy that underpins our approach to coaching and athlete development. We understand that for a gymnast, the journey can be demanding, filled with rigorous training sessions and the pursuit of perfection. However, we firmly believe that celebrating achievements, no matter how small, is essential for a gymnast’s growth and motivation. By celebrating small and big wins along the way, we emphasize the importance of enjoying the process and finding fulfillment in every step of the way. This mindset shift not only makes the gymnastics experience more fulfilling but also fosters resilience and a positive attitude, crucial attributes for long-term success in the sport. Ultimately, celebration is not just about having fun; it’s about building self-esteem and confidence that lead to significant victories in and out of the gym. Our gymnasts aren’t only gymnasts, and we hope they feel their worth no matter their talent level.

10. Honor

Governed by honor. An environment of honor creates safe places for kids, families and coaches to be respected and challenged. Honor is about self-control, not control. There is no power without honor.

“Governed by honor” is a core principle that forms the foundation of our gym’s ethos. At Vertical, we understand that creating an environment of honor is essential for the well-being and development of everyone involved—kids, families, and coaches alike. Honoring one another fosters a safe and respectful atmosphere where individuals can thrive, both physically and emotionally. It’s about promoting self-control, not control, emphasizing that true power lies in the ability to respect and empower one another. If you let it, deep passion for something whether that is coaching, competing or wanting the best for your child, can lead to a sense of feeling power hungry and controlling. This commitment to honor ensures that every gymnast can train and compete in an environment where their dignity is upheld, allowing them to push their limits and grow without fear. It also extends to our coaches and families, fostering a culture of mutual respect and support that enables us to achieve excellence together, in and out of the gym.

11. Stewardship

The Third Option. We manage the resources we’ve been given to give back to those around us. When given the option to choose between titles such as “owner, coach, gymnast”, we choose the third option- steward. What will you do with your gift?

Stewardship is a guiding principle that holds immense importance in our gymnastics gym. In a world often fixated on titles and personal gain, we teach our gymnasts the value of responsible stewardship. We believe that managing the resources we’ve been given, whether it’s our time, talents, or the gym itself, is not solely for personal enrichment but a means to give back to our community. By embracing the role of stewards, we emphasize the importance of selflessness and accountability. It’s not about merely being an owner, coach, parent or gymnast; it’s about recognizing our collective responsibility to use our gifts to uplift others. This mindset empowers our gymnasts to become not just skilled athletes but compassionate individuals who understand the positive impact they can have on the world around them. Ultimately, stewardship transcends personal achievement, and it’s a principle that drives us to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those we serve. Think about how amazing it will be for your child to learn this through their passion!

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