Sports can be captivating that when it sinks its teeth into us it never wants to let go. Take gymnastics for example, it is not called the “darling sport” for nothing. Odette Perlada and Gina Victoriano aren’t gymnasts. Far from it. They’re working moms who got into the management and business side of gymnastics because of their daughters. “Some of our friends invited us to send our girls to gymnastics class,” recalls Perlada who dabbles in real estate by day. “And it was a pleasant surprise to see how the sport increased all the girls’ strength, speed, agility, flexibility, and focus.”
They enrolled their daughters one summer and they were shocked at the appallingly poor facilities. Pooling their resources with three other parents, they purchased proper gymnastics equipment (“And we paid the right taxes too,” chimes in Victoriano who is a certified public accountant) and put up
“Gymnastics isn’t a mainstream sport, but it’s a sport in which we Filipinos can excel because of our size and how lithe we are,” explains Victoriano.
“What’s gratifying also about it is when we see the reactions of the girl’s parents when they see their children perform,” relates Perlada who played tennis and volleyball back in her schooling days. “The moms have tears in their eyes when they say, ‘I didn’t know she could do that (like balance on a beam and perform a variety of routines).’ They get to know so much more about their child when they watch them perform.”
Kids who throw tantrums soon develop a form of maturity and get a massive dose of confidence where they are able to do things they previously couldn’t do. Perlada gushes, “Many of our parents report that their kids’ school teachers are amazed on their children’s newfound self-esteem and can-do attitudes that they’ve recommended to their friends to send their kids to gymnastics school.”
“Our student to teacher ratios are small (eight is to one) that allow for better and more hands-on teaching,” says Victoriano who also points out that they pay their national team-caliber coaches the best wages in the country.
“Even if my daughter is now in college, I’m still as passionate about the sport,” concludes Perlada. “It’s fulfilling not just for the kids but for us parents as well.”
The Gymnastics and