To all of our lovely members
I hope you are all keeping well.
We are now rapidly approaching the holiday season and I’ve been reflecting on what an incredible year it has been for our Star-Tastic family. It’s been so great to see a return to normality this year following a turbulent couple of years. Some of my personal highlights are the incredible Showcase events, a successful competition in the summer (with one more to come this weekend!) and reintroducing our parent’s watching weeks with badges and medals to be handed out! I am so proud of how well all of the children have done!
We’ve also seen our Supernova, Elite IGA and IAIGC teams continue to have great success on the national stage, jingling around gyms across the country with medals galore! It gives me so much pride to see all of our teams represent Star-Tastic at such a high and consistent level but most importantly see the huge amounts of team spirit they have developed. I am very excited to see these teams develop further next year, add new team members and compete in Florida at the IAIGC World Championships in the Summer. I’d like to commend every single one of these gymnasts that have achieved so much this year and thank all of the parents for the immense dedication and commitment that comes with it.
At this time of year, my team and I spend a lot of time planning for the year ahead. We’ve been listening to your feedback, I have been observing classes, speaking to parents and thinking about the right next steps for our club. The good news is we have big plans, I want our club to continue to grow, develop and most importantly improve. It is vital to me that we are focussing on the right things, investing both our time and money in the areas that matter most to our members and parents. We exist to provide fun, safe and progressive classes where members of all abilities feel part of our Star-Tastic Family. So with this vision in mind, I have some important but also exciting updates to share with you all for 2023.
Introducing Powerhouse Parkour
We have some exciting news that we have been so excited to share with you for months! We were waiting until the New Year but have decided following the recent parent survey which many of you provided some great feedback on that now would be the best time. One of the key things we’ve heard for a while is that people really love our Parkour offering but you felt we could do more in this space. We also hear from many of our Parkour athletes that whilst they love Star-Tastic, the name doesn’t carry much street-cred! We also heard that you would love to see more formal progression, badges and competitions in Parkour. With all this in mind, I’m delighted to announce we are launching Powerhouse Parkour on the 1st December 2022. Whilst firmly part of the Star-Tastic family, Powerhouse Parkour will be the new home for all of our Parkour classes. We will be working with Parkour UK, the governing body for Parkour in the UK to refresh our classes, introduce a development path for all of our athletes and further the development of our coaching team both inside and outside the gym. We have launched a new range of Powerhouse merchandise and accessories as part of this too!
I’m so proud of how our Parkour offering has developed and the impact it has on the young people who come to our gym. This is why I’m so excited about the launch of Powerhouse which enables us to take our Parkour offering to a whole new level. Please keep an eye on our socials for more information soon. We have BIG PLANS in this area for 2023 and I cannot wait to be in a position to share this!
As we continue to grow the Parkour and Gymnastics parts of our club we have had to make some difficult sacrifices elsewhere. These sports require a significant amount of space and as we continue to develop and grow our offering we have to evaluate the space needed to do this. Unfortunately, this means that from January we will no longer be offering Trampolining classes. Our Mini Stars classes will become gymnastics only as well. We run our Mini Stars classes like this at Tadworth and it has been really successful.
This was not an easy decision to make however trampolining has always been a smaller part of our club due to the space and equipment requirements. We’ve seen many of our trampolinists develop fantastically over the years but the reality is without more space and equipment there is a limit on how much further we can develop and train these children. The benefit of not running trampoline classes is significant, opening up a huge amount of space and more of my coaches to our gymnasts and Parkour athletes.
I know this will be disappointing news to some and I am very sorry about that. Given we are half way through the year I will be offering priority to any of our trampoline members who would like to move into any of our Parkour or Gymnastics classes. For anyone else I will of course offer a pro-rata refund on this year’s membership fees. In advance of making this decision I have also spoken to owners of other Trampolining clubs who would be delighted to offer your children a space, if this is something you would be interested in please let us know and we can make the introduction. Once again, I’m sorry that for some of you this will not be welcome news but I hope you can understand the reason behind the decision.
The parent’s survey was so valuable to us, so thank you to everyone who took the time to provide feedback. We heard so many positive things which were amazing and like all good feedback, we have some things we can work on. We will be posting more on this another day but please do continue to share your feedback to help us to continue improving, it is always welcome.
One of the pieces of feedback we hear often is you want to watch your children in the gym more often. This has always been complicated by safeguarding, venue rules and most recently covid. Unfortunately, we can’t have parents in the gym at many of our venues as often as we would like but we do hear you and will be introducing more structured parent sit-in sessions starting with our end of November and December sessions and we can’t wait to show you what we’ve all been working on. We will be running these lessons as a normal class so that you can see what we do on a weekly basis. The exciting part will be that we hand out all badge certificates that have been passed this term and our Star of the Term Medals.
Like many businesses and households, we are feeling the effects of the current economic climate. We’ve seen our costs increase across the board over the past 12 months, particularly with suppliers and venues. I never want to increase fees, as a mum of two girls, I know how expensive it can be to support their passions but unfortunately, with some of our venue hire costs increase by as much as 33% I’ve been left with no alternative especially given we’re still recovering from the impact of COVID. I have done my very best to keep these increases to a minimum. The maximum increase in any class is 5%. The new fee structure will come into effect from January fees and I’ve attached a copy of our new timetable with some exciting new classes too. Please do email us if you would like to change or add any class.
I find it difficult to mention COVID without getting emotional, these messages started as a result of the sudden closure of our club and I will be eternally grateful for the immense support of our members. It was at that time I first shared that I had always wanted Star-Tastic to be more than a club and in my eyes, it was a family, your support during this tough time proved this to me. I promised I would repay every single hour through extra classes, camps and events. I am delighted that we have been able to do that and that the vast majority of catch-up hours accrued during this period have been used. I’ve mentioned previously that we would have to put a deadline on using the remaining hours after almost 2 years and that they would need to be used by the end of 2022. If that is going to cause any major problems for anyone please do not hesitate to contact me directly.
Finally, I’m sure I will see many of you around the gym in the coming weeks but I wanted to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. It will be here before we know it and I hope as many of you as possible have the opportunity to take a break with the family. It’s been an incredible year and I thank you for your commitment, and support and for being part of our Family. I can’t wait to see what we achieve together in 2023 and look forward to lots more jingling Gymnasts and Athletes!
From our family to all of yours