Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

March 27, 2014

Tumblers prepare for state competitions

By Julie Clark Correspondent
The Daily Iowegian

---- — It’s been a dream come true for Sheree Lange and now she is seeing her students’ dreams come true as well.

Lange opened the doors to Sheree’s Flip Flop Tumbling in August of 2011 and expanded last year when she purchased two buildings off the south side of the Centerville square.

With words like “make sure your toes are pointed” and “get tight,” the competition tumblers have came a long way since their one and only tournament last season. This year they have had four competitions already starting in December when they traveled to Marshalltown followed by Iowa Falls in January, Oskaloosa in February and Melcher in March.

They will be competing in Truro in April and then at the end of April they will be competing at USTA State which will be held in Ottumwa at the Bridgeview Center. USTA State will decide who qualifies for Nationals which will be held in Kentucky.

In May they will compete in the AAU State meet which is held in Waterloo and if they finish in the top 10 they will qualify for the Junior Olympics which will be held in Des Moines this year.

Lange focuses on the tumblers improving their scores, not their places. There are about 40 tumblers that compete and anyone can compete.

Of those competing this year 14 have scored a nine or higher. Those include Emily Clark, Zoie Cochran, Reagan Dell, Sadie DeVries, Melanie Herr, Matty Kovacevich, Maddy Lawson, Bayleigh Stevens, Cessna Stufflebeem, Kiara Wallace, Emma Weber, Alyssa Koestner, Ally Lawson and Taylor Steele.

At a competition there are two judges which give a score out of 10 and there is a superior judge that looks at the difficulty of the pass for two points.

When at a competition they are grouped with others their age and skill level. The levels are sub beginner does one forward pass with five skills going forward. Beginner level includes a back pass and forward pass of rolls.

Advanced beginner is a forward and back pass of limber skills and sub novice competes on the rod floor with a round off and three back hand springs and a round off and two back hand springs.

It doesn’t come easy and practice is a must. The competition tumblers practice twice a week, one recreation practice where they work on advancing their skills and then competition class where they work on perfecting their passes for the meets.

Lange also teaches private lessons along with Kathy Cochran, cheerleading, boys tumbling and tiny tots tumbling.

This summer Lange is planning to add a tumbling trampoline and a double mini to the cheerleading room. There will be signups for summer classes and private lessons in May.