Sixteen-year-old, Riley Murphy, has been a part of the Rock Starz All Stars cheer family for many years. As an athlete on their SR Small coed worlds team, Diamonds, she loves her team and is happy to be a part of such a great organization. To Riley, being a Rock Star means you are a part of a community; another place to call home. Her favorite thing about being a Rock Star is the coaches and her teammates. Riley never dreads going to the gym. She enjoys going there to work hard, learn new skills and do her very best.
Riley’s road to being a level 5 athlete has not been easy. After being on a level 5 team that did not get the opportunity to perform, all she desired was to finally be on a team where she could show off her years of hard work in the gym.
Last May, Rock Starz cheer organization brought back their level 5 cheer team, Diamonds. Without a doubt, Riley was thrilled! After trying out and making Diamonds, she was ready to take on the choreography-filled summer season with her teammates. Unfortunately, a few days in, things quickly changed.
On June 6, 2016, Riley was at tumbling practice when one of her worst nightmares as an athlete became a reality. In the beginning of practice, she had come down wrong doing a round off back handspring double and tore her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), and meniscus. There are four major ligaments in the knee and each plays an important part in enabling the body to run, walk, jump and pivot. After tearing 3 of the 4, Riley knew this would not be good for her upcoming cheer season.
Riley’s injury entailed a long recovery process. Her doctor informed her she would need major surgery and a series of physical therapy sessions. On August 15, 2016, she went to the hospital to undergo a scary 7-hour surgery that would help heal her ligaments. After the surgery, she would see her physical therapist 3 times a week and her doctor once every 3 months. The doctors were projecting that she would be cleared to practice and compete by June 2017. Unfortunately, her season on Diamonds would have ended by that time.
Riley was crushed by her injury, but she didn’t let it crush her spirit. She was motivated by teammates, family and coaches to do better each day. The amount of support and love from peers was overwhelming. Even when she was out of the gym, the Rock Starz family always included her in activities and events. They visited her after surgery, texted her about the progress she’s made with her therapists and doctors, and often expressed that they missed her. They even made her the first ever “ath-leader” of the month; an honor awarded to an athlete that shows a great deal of leadership within their organization.
Riley injury didn’t stop her from being a dedicated athlete. Although she couldn’t compete, Riley made sure she was there for her teammates, as they were for her. She loved watching them practice and compete. To her team, it almost felt like she never left. She would often attend practice and she never missed a single competition during the season. Her injury may have stopped her from being on the floor, but her passion continued to thrive. Watching them made her want to do better and heal quicker. Watching practice from afar, she got to see the coach’s perspective and soon realized that “even at the worst times, we come together.”
After months of physical therapy, Riley is excited to get back on the floor, competing and tumbling alongside her team. Her biggest accomplishment as an injured athlete was her successful recovery process. Her doctors predicted she would be out for a year, but she came back to stunt at the 7-month mark! Her remarkable recovery process is amazing and it truly inspired dozens of cheer athletes at Rock Starz All Stars to be the best they can be as well.
As Riley was wrapping up a successful healing process, her team was wrapping up a successful cheer season. For the first time in Rock Starz history, their SR Small level 5 team, Diamonds, received a full paid bid to The Cheerleading Worlds! This accomplishment was huge for their organization and it couldn’t have been done without a year of hard work and dedication from every team member, including Riley, who fortunately got to compete for the first time this season during that very competition!
Being a Rock Star has impacted Riley’s life in many ways: “When you are a Rock Star, you are surrounded by a community of people that always motivate you to push harder and never stop trying.” In the past year, she has learned the true meaning of being on a team. Without the support of her Rock Starz family, her hardship may have been the end of her career as a cheer athlete.
That’s a wrap! Last night, we concluded our 2016-2017 season with our 80's themed banquet at BrookSide Manor is Fiesterville, PA. What a night it was! We had all the headbands, leggings, packman accessories, neon colors that we could have wanted. With a great turnout, the dance floor was flooded with cheer parents and athletes showing off their dance moves.
As we conclude the 2016-2017 season, we would just like to acknowledge all the hard work and dedication that was made in the last year. We couldn't be more proud of all of our cheer athletes this season. All teams went above and beyond and really set the bar for our organization as a whole.
Years ago when Rock Starz was created, we couldn't have imagined the success of our teams now. In the last year our teams have made history for our organization!
- 2017 Paid Worlds Bid
- 3 Teams with D1 Summit Bids
- #1 Sports league in Bucks County (2017 Bucks Happening List)
- US Finals Finalists
Thank you to everyone who made this last cheer season the best one yet! We have concluded tryouts and are very excited for the 2017-2018 season. See you all at cheer camp in July!
This past weekend, the Newtown Athletic Club hosted the Summit Send-off, a pep rally in honor of the Emeralds, Platinum and Gems qualifying for Summit. Summit is the most prestigious championship for levels 1 through 4. It is located in Walt Disney World and only 10% of teams who try for bids get them. This is a huge accomplishment for the Emeralds and Sapphires and a pep rally was a great way to celebrate and to get them pumped and prepped to do their best!
At the pep rally all of our teams, parents and members of the club enjoyed some yummy Disney themed treats, cotton candy, and the company of Minnie and Mickey mouse! Our Rock Starz were also excited to watch their beloved coaches, Kelly, Scott and Nikko perform live at WORLDS!
Here is a picture recap of this year's Summit Send-off:
How well do you know your coaches? Each month we like to highlight one of our Rock Star coaches, so that YOU can get to know them better! This month we are highlighting Eric Kats, Youth 2 Emeralds coach!
Eric's specialty is working with the little ones - they just adore him! "They are always entertaining and unpredictable so every day is different. You never know what they are going to say!" -Eric
Learn more about Eric:
Name (or nickname): Eric
Where are you from: Holland, PA
What are your goals for the future: I am currently in school to become a nurse, and my dream is to become either a Trauma/ER nurse, or a Nurse Anesthetist
Experience in the industry: I was 5 years old when I started gymnastics, and at 7 I began competing until I was 18. I was also a dancer for a while, and enjoyed choreographing routines for fun! Unfortunately, I suffered a debilitating injury which put an abrupt end to my career. I have been coaching for 12 years and love every minute of it; the ups and downs, highs and lows, and seeing all the smiles as the kids achieve their skills!
Favorite skill to teach: My favorite skill to teach is called an Onodi! (A back handspring that half-turns into a front walkover in the air during the skill)
Favorite food: I am such a foodie that I don’t have a favorite food. However, I am obsessed with Chinese food, pizza, and sushi!
Favorite Disney movie: Aladdin!! Without a doubt!
Favorite Emoji: The Kissy face always makes me laugh and smile
Three things on your bucket list: I want to travel around Europe (especially Italy), I would love to scuba dive in the ocean, and I want to watch the summer Olympic gymnastics live one day!
Any fun facts about you: I speak multiple languages, and in my spare time I love to watch Netflix and solve the Rubik’s Cube!
Interested in learning more about Eric about how he can help your child grow as an cheer athlete? Please contact email@example.com.
This Saturday, March 25, our cheer athletes competed at Wild Wild West, a cheer competition in Trenton, NJ. Nearly half of the Sun National Bank Center was filled with cheer athletes, families and supporters.
All of our teams had a blast competing and showing off their skills to other teams in the tri-state area! During each routine, our coaches were jumping for joy as they watched their teams execute every stunt and tumbling skill. Great job, everyone!
Here is a picture recap of Wild Wild West:
This month's Rock Star of the Month is Ryan Link!
Ryan is on our SR small coed worlds team, Diamonds. He may be new to the Rock Starz family, but he fits right in with our hardworking and dedicated athletes. He is fast at learning new skills and a great team player.
What Ryan likes most about Rock Starz is how nice the staff is. He loves having Lexi and Scott as his coaches and mentors. Being in a positive environment and around others that also want to succeed motivates Ryan to also do so. He enjoys seeing other people happy to succeed. "Competing with the best motivates me to be the best." -Ryan
What is Ryan's favorite memory as a Rock Star?
His favorite memory is coming to our gym in the summer and working with Randy. He enjoyed throwing skills and having fun every day. The day he got his full (only 1 week after starting), he realized tumbling and cheering was something he wanted to pursue.
Going through school and trying a bunch of activities (and sticking with them) and still getting good grades!
Recently, Ryan's team received a full paid bid to WORLDS! Can you guess what he's looking forward to most this season? "I love competing. It's so much fun!" -Ryan
Great job, Ryan! Keep up the good work!
How well do you know your coaches? Each month we like to highlight one of our Rock Star coaches, so that YOU can get to know them better! This month we are highlighting Lexi Dultz, Chrome (Senior 2), Gems (Junior 3), and Diamonds (Senior Coed 5) coach!
"I would say my specialty is stunting, choreographing stunts and pyramids. Constructing a stunt sequence/pyramid in a routine can definitely be stressful, but it is my absolute favorite thing to do and always so worth the stress! " -Lexi
Learn more about Lexi:
Name (or nickname): Alexa- Lexi for short!
Where are you from: Born and raised in Newtown, Pa!
Where do you work: Rock Starz!
Experience in the industry: I cheered for Council Rock's recreational cheer program for many years. When it transitioned into All Star in 2007, I was on the very first Rock Starz team ever which was a Senior 3 team. After that, I cheered on a Senior 5 Worlds team for 2 years called Dream Extreme. When I graduated High School I started to help out with Dream Extreme and I realized that coaching was something I really loved to do. This is my 6th season coaching at Rock Starz and these past 6 years have molded me into the coach that I am today.
Favorite skill to teach: I honestly love teaching ALL skills but if I had to choose, it would probably be any twisting stunts like a full down, double down, full up, or double up!
Favorite food: Buffalo chicken anything!
Favorite Disney movie: Enchanted.
Favorite Emoji: Way too many! But I'll probably have to narrow it down to 😂 or 💎 because I use those all the time!
Three things on your bucket list:
1. Travel more- especially to Greece, and Bora Bora!
2. Finish Bachelor's degree (so soon!) and then go for my Master's.
3. Learn to play the guitar!
Most memorable moments as a coach:
"In 2013 I coached the first Worlds team at Rock Starz ever and helped lead them to the World Championships where they placed very well. In 2014, not only did Diamonds make it to Worlds their second season, they scored top 5 out of 60 teams and moved to semi-finals from the Prelim round. Last season, we unfortunately did not have a Worlds team but it allowed me to focus more on my lower levels and I was able to help lead my Junior 2 Emeralds and Senior 3 Sapphires to The Summit which is extremely difficult to get a bid to. Not only did these teams get bids to attend such a prestigious competition, Sapphires won the Prelim round and advanced straight to Finals where they placed top 10! "
And lastly, "after a year break, Diamonds are back and stronger than ever! Just recently, they won a full paid bid to Worlds which is $25,000 to help pay for their expenses. This is the first full paid bid for Rock Starz ever! All of these moments have been so exhilarating and very special. I am so proud and grateful that I could be part of leading these teams to these amazing victories. It makes it all worth it to see these kids celebrate themselves after all of their hard work!" -Lexi
Interested in learning more about Lexi and the teams she coaches? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This month’s Rock Star of the Month is Elizabeth Nelson!
Elizabeth is on Crystals and loves her cheer family! She enjoys seeing her friends achieve skills; it pushes her to work harder in the gym and succeed with them. Recently, she is thrilled to have finally landed her back handspring! She has been tirelessly working to achieve that tumbling milestone, and once she finally achieved it, she was ecstatic!
What motivates Elizabeth? “Always wanting to improve myself and learn from my mistakes! Seeing my friends achieve skills pushes me to work harder.” -Elizabeth.
Elizabeth’s favorite memory as a Rock Star is competing and performing at her first Philly Live competition! This season, she is still just as excited to compete and show off her skills with her team by her side.
“Elizabeth is one of the most hardworking, dedicated, and positive athletes I have ever had the pleasure of working with! Not a day goes by where she isn’t smiling and having a blast at the gym! Her skills keep progressing and her positive energy is beyond infectious. She is a joy to be around!” -Coach Eric
FUN FACT: If Elizabeth could be any animal in the world, what should she be? A flying squirrel! “I want to be a flying squirrel flying from tree to tree having a grand ole time!” -Elizabeth
Way to go, Elizabeth! Keep up the good work!
While the holiday season is finally behind us, for some, thinking about summer is still a little far off. While the Camp NAC leadership team has been dreaming of summer 2017 since before our 2016 season ended in August, we understand that many parents have not thought as far ahead. However, we are excited to announce that our Summer 2017 camper application is open and we are ready to help you get your camper signed up for their best summer ever! Check out these five reasons why signing up for summer camp early is actually better:
With all of these reasons and more, why wait to register your camper for their best summer ever? It is so easy to sign up for Camp NAC online - just click here! For more information, please contact email@example.com or visit http://campnac.com/.
Blog written by Camp NAC & posted on newtownathletic.com.
How well do you know your coaches? New this year, we are going to highlight a different coach each month to get YOU to know your coaches better! This month we are proud to highlight our tumbling, Parkour and trampoline coach, Eli Price!
At multiple gyms in the tri-state area, Eli coaches gymnastics, cheer, tumbling, Parkour, Acrodunking, weight training, strength and conditioning, speed and agility, and a few other activities. When Eli is not coaching, you can find him stunting and dunking at professional basketball games. Eli has a position with 3 different dunk teams across the U.S. Team Acrodunk, including Americas Got Talent, The New York Knicks Air Elite Dunkers and I Am Talent Dunkers.
Get to know Eli!
1. What is your favorite part of your job?
My favorite part of coaching is seeing the joy in an athlete’s face when I am able to get them to a new skill that they thought they were not able to do.
2. What is your proudest accomplishment?
My proudest accomplishment is being able to take my skills from gymnastics and turn them into entertainment for NBA fans. Every time I step out on the court I know that I would not be able to do half of what I do if it had not been for gymnastics.
3. What is something most people don’t know about you?
Most people don’t know that I used to be a mascot for the WMBA for 3 years.
4. What is your favorite thing to do in your spare time?
In my spare time I love to workout, travel, go to the movies, test drive new cars, go skydiving, play sports and hangout with good people.
5. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?
I have been lucky to have done a lot of traveling in my life. I have been to about 30 states in the U.S. and several different countries. My next trip, I would love to visit Australia.
6. Who is your role model?
My role model is my uncle/gymnastics coach.
7. What are three things that are on your bucket list?
Visit Australia, learn how to snowboard and go jet skiing!
Interested in training with Coach Eli? You're in luck! He is hosting a spring trampoline session beginning Feb 13 - April 13. The session will be 10 weeks long (10 classes) and will include progress reports at 5 and 10 weeks. To learn more, attend a FREE trial trampoline class on Feb 7th or 10th, or visit http://www.rockstarzallstars.com/trampoline.html