January 29, 2010 -- GK-Elite Sportswear announces Shawn Johnson, 2008 Olympic Gold Medalist, as the company’s first-ever endorsed athlete promoting her own signature cheer practice wear collection. The new Shawn Johnson Cheer collection, featured in the GK 2010 Cheer catalog, includes seven coordinating practice tops and shorts in cutting edge styles, prints and colors.
“We are thrilled to present Shawn Johnson’s premier Cheer Workout Collection as an exclusive GK offering,” stated Kelly McKeown, who heads up GK’s Cheer Division. She added, “With her energetic performances in the world of gymnastics and also as the winner of Dancing with the Stars, Shawn represents all that is great about cheer. Shawn has poured her creative touch into her new signature line by including a mix of fun and athleticism into her designs. 2010 is going to be an incredible year for us!”.
The Shawn Johnson Collection is highlighted in GK’s new 2010 Cheer catalog. GK is bringing their gymnastics wear engineering expertise to the spirit market. The 2010 catalog includes a greatly expanded range of women’s styling, men’s cheer apparel, cool new practice wear, dance wear, camp apparel, spirit wear, matching bows and safety & training equipment.
See GK’s New Cheerleading Apparel online at:
Available starting February 4th 2010.
GK-Elite Sportswear is the world’s leading supplier of gymnastics apparel and is recognized around the world for superior variety, quality, fit and service. Based in Reading, Pennsylvania, Elite Sportswear, L.P., the company behind the GK brand, continues its commitment to American-made quality and continuous innovation in designs for Gymnastics, Cheerleading, and Dance apparel.
January marks the beginning of the 2010 Gymnastics season
The start of the New Year marks the beginning of the competitive gymnastics season, including all levels of gymnastics – from Junior Olympics to collegiate to elite. Thousands of gymnasts across the nation are competing in invitationals and other events that serve as the first steps in the championships journey.
“In January, the gymnastics competitive season kicks into high gear,” said Steve Penny, president of USA Gymnastics. “Gymnastics clubs are competing in events every weekend from now through July; collegiate gymnastics is in full swing and culminates with the championships in April; and our elite gymnasts begin competing in a variety of domestic and international events. We sanction about 3,500 events annually, and many of these will be held in the coming months.”
Gymnastics includes competition in men’s, women’s, rhythmic, acrobatic and group gymnastics, and trampoline and tumbling. Because the complete calendar is extensive, here are some of the key events scheduled for the coming months. For a complete schedule of member club invitationals, collegiate meets and USA Gymnastics championship events, go to usa-gymnastics.org/events.
As a sponsor to USA Gymnastics and official supplier of gymnastics apparel for the US National Team (with adidas gymnastics leotards and apparel), GK Elite Sportswear looks forward to another great year! Check out the latest new Gymanstics apparel at http://www.gkelite.com.
Fans can watch 2009 World Gymnastics Championships on TV, Web
Universal Sports will carry live webcast
U.S. fans will have more opportunities to enjoy the action from the finals of the 2009 World Gymnastics Championships in London than ever before – online and on both cable and broadcast television. Universal Sports will provide a live webcast, with a delayed telecast of the program on its network, from Oct. 15-18. NBC Sports will broadcast coverage from the World Championships on Oct. 24-25.
Web/TV schedule (all times Eastern)
Universal Sports TV
Men’s all-around finals
Women’s all-around finals
Individual event finals
Individual event finals
World Championships coverage
World Championships coverage
The webcast will be available at universalsports.com. To find the channel for Universal Sports cable network, go to universalsports.tv. Universal Sports will also provide encore coverage of the NBC shows; please check universalsports.com/tvschedule for more information.
For the World Championships, usa-gymnastics.org is a great source for information, including a complete schedule, start lists, results, photos, event coverage, etc. The World Championships begin on Oct. 13 with the men’s preliminary round and conclude on Oct. 18 with the second day of individual event finals. The World Championships features competition in the men’s and women’s all-around and individual events.
Based in Indianapolis, USA Gymnastics is the national governing body for gymnastics in the United States. Its mission is to encourage participation and the pursuit of excellence in the sport. Its disciplines include men's and women's artistic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, trampoline and tumbling, and acrobatic gymnastics. For more information, log on to www.usa-gymnastics.org.
ALSO BROUGHT TO YOU BY GK and adidas
In addition to being the Official Apparel Sponsors at the event, GK Elite Sportswear and adidas Gymnastics will also help to sponsor the television and web coverage for Worlds.
Belgian Trampoline and Tumbling phenom Joris Geens was recently featured in an article in the Gazet Van Antwerpen. This interview was in anticipation of his next competition in St Petersburg, where he will represent Belgium at the 26th World Championships in trampoline, tumbling, and double mini-trampoline (DMT). The event will take place at the 25,000-seat St Petersburg Sports-Concert Complex (a.k.a., Peterburgsky Sport Concert Complex) on November 11-14, 2009.
GK is the official apparel sponsor of the Belgian National Gymnastics Team as well as the Trampoline and Tumbling team. The GK Mens Comp Shirt is a special order mens comp shirt in Black, Gold and Red spandex. with matching red gymnastics pants.
Click Here See GK's Full line of Mens gymnastics apparel
The article in Flemish reads:
Joris Geens vertegenwoordigt België in november in Sint-Petersburg
Duffelaar alse erstee Vlaming
naar WK trampolinespringen
De achttienjarige Joris Geens uit Duffel neemt als eerste Vlaming deel aan het wereldkampioenschap trampolinespringen. Dat vindt van 11 tot 15 november plaats in Sint-Petersburg Rusland.
Joris Geens doet al elfjaar aan trampolinespringen Leuk, maar kiezen zevenjarige jongetjes doorgaans niet voor het voetbalveld? "Ik dusn iet",l acht Geens. "Ik deed al een poosje aan gymnastiek toen mijn ouders me er op wezen dat trampolinespringen een boeiende takvan die sport is. Ik probeerde het, en kijk: de microbe had me meteen te pakken. Nukan ik me nog moeilijk een leven indenken zondertrampoline."
Geen lachertje trouwens, dat springen. Want net zoals in het wielrennen of de atletiek komt een mens er niet met een kwartiertje training per dag." Fysiek is het erg zwaar: je moet conditioneel echt top zijn. En daarnaast gaat trampolinespringen natuurlijk vooral om precisie en coórdinatie. Je moet dingen durven, maar tegelijk mag je op geen enkel moment de controle verliezen over je lichaam."
Geens is de jeugdreeksen ontgroeid en maakt nu zijn eerste seizoen door bij de seniors. En hij behaalde dus meteen de limiet voor deelname aan het wereldkamnioenschap, waar hij mete en zelf uitgewerkte reeks van salto's, schroeven en ander acrobatisch werk de jury moet overtuigen." In november reis ik naar Sint-Petersburg. Mijn ambities probeer ik vooral realistisch uit te tekenen. In Vlaanderen ben ik de beste springer, maar op het wereldtoneel moet ik nog niet meteen dromen van een medaille. Dat is sowieso wat te hoos gegrepen in je eerste jaar als senior. Maar ik hoop toch bij de eerste twintig te eindigen."
Is dat wereldkampioenschap op zich al een hoogtepunt, dan blijft er toch nog een grote droom over. "De Olympische Spelen", klinkt het enthousiast. "Je daarvoor kwalificeren blijft toch de ultieme fantasie van elke topsporter. Sinds 2000 is trampolinespringen een officiële discipline op de Spelen. Ik hoop dat ik daar ooit Belgiè magvertegenwoordigen, Maar ik ben niet haastig in m'n ambities: er ligt nog een hele carrière voor mij."
Toch zal Geens allicht nooit het beleg op zijn boterham verdienen met de trampoline alleen. "Klopt: trampolinespringen is niet meteen iets waar massaal veel aandacht aan besteed wordt in biivoorbeeld de media. Daarom begin ik dit jaar ook in Gent aan een studie kinesitherapie. Soms vind ik het wel jammer dat we zo uit de spotlights blijven. Het is tenslotte een volwaardige sporttak waar je veel talent en doorzettingsvermogen voor nodig hebt, en bovendien is dat springen nog spectaculair om naar te kijken ook. Maar goed, ik doe hetn aturirlijk in die eerste plaats voor mezelf: op die trampoline vind ik mijn geluk."
The Danish team of Peter Jensen and Daniel Praest won the Silver medal in Mens Synchronized Trampoline at the in the fifth and final World Cup. The 2009 Trampoline and Tumbling World Cup Series was held at the Amselstieg Sports Hall in Salzgitter, Germany.
GK is the official tumbling apparel sponsor of the Trampoline and Tumbling Team of Denmark. GK provides gymnastics and tumbling clothes for the team including comp shirts, gymnasitcs pants and gymnastics shorts.
The Salzgitter World Cup, the last leg of the World Cup Series, determined the winners of the 2009 World Cup Series, which is based on the four best World Cup results of each gymnast. Gymnasts collect World Cup points ranging from 50 points for the 1st place to 6 pts for the 16th place. The previous legs of these 2009 World Cup Series took place in Loule, Portugal, last September; in Sofia, Bulgaria, in April; in Ostend, Belgium, in August; and in Zielona Gora, Poland, last weekend.
The World Cup format features a preliminary round, with the top eight gymnasts or pairs advancing to the finals (a maximum of two individuals or one pair per country may advance in final).
Care/Washing Instructions for GK Gymnastics Apparel
Things You Need to Know About Our Fabrics:
GK takes tremendous pride in both selecting and testing the best available fabrics in the gymnastics industry today. However there are certain high fashion fabrics that are more susceptible to wear and fading than the traditional long wearing durable fabrics. Our fabrics can be grouped into 3 categories:
• Long Wearing Durable Fabrics include: Antron®/Lycra® and Velvet
• Less Durable Fabrics need Special Care and include: Nylon/Lycra® with Foil, Sparkle Velvet and velvet with glitter
• Fragile Fabrics need extra Special Care and include: Mesh and Hologram
Here’s what you need to know about caring for our less durable and fragile fabrics:
• Repeated wear and washing may cause the fabrics to fade or loose foil.
• Alcohol in all aerosol products affects these fabrics. Please cover the leotard before applying.
• Deodorants and perspiration may cause these fabrics to fade or lose foil.
• Hologram and Nylon/Lycra® with foil fabrics will dull slightly in the jeweled area due to the heat application.
Color Blocking with Fabrics
Please note that combining a white or light color fabric with dark color fabric may show color transference. This is a common industry problem, and can become obvious under certain conditions. We have found that perspiration and deodorant often contribute to colors bleeding, especially when the two colors meet under the arms. Even by following proper washing instructions, you may notice some color transference.
In addition, we have found that when a white or light color garment is worn under a black velvet warm-up or shorts, some color may transfer from the warm-up onto the leotard.
GK may refuse returns on orders due to color transference.
To minimize this problem, it is important that you have carefully selected your fabric color
combinations and follow the washing instructions listed below.
Also note, damp leotards that are left in gym bags may show color transference.
Important Washing Instructions
DO NOT HAND WASH
Turn garment inside out. Machine wash individually in a large volume of cold water on gentle cycle. Must use a very mild liquid detergent. We strongly recommend using Ivory Snow liquid detergent.
DO NOT use bleach, harsh or granular detergents or liquid fabric softener.
Remove immediately from washer and tumble dry on low or no heat setting.
DO NOT hang or lay flat to dry and DO NOT use dryer sheets.
Elite Sportswear, L.P. will not guarantee any garment that is not washed and dried as directed.
If you choose to combine sensitive fabrics and colors, it is at your own risk. GK may refuse returns on special orders in those combinations.
You can get a long life out of your gymnastics leotards and apparel by following these simple rules. This applies not only to GK and adidias Special Order competitive gymnastics wear, but also our In Stock and Seasonal leotards and Accessories.
GK Has provided warm ups and leos for several T&T programs, including the JumpStart National Team, Junior Olympic Regional All Stars and the Elite Development camp. What I love about GK is their consistent Quality in Design and workmanship. They are always willing to work with us to provide what we need for each program and the athletes are so thrilled to receive their apparel. We are pleased to say that GK has always come through for us and their service is exceptional.
Trampoline & Tumbling Program manager
The July Issue of Technique Magazine features an article about the Junior Olympics Program – and talked about GK’s long standing commitment to the valuable Grass Roots programs brought to the gymnastics community by USA-Gymnastics.
Some things are natural associations . . . peanut butter and jelly, salt and pepper, song and dance and GK and J.O. Nationals. Who can thing of a Junior Olympics National Championships without being aware of a very strong and faithful presence in the form of hundreds and hundreds of beautiful uniforms carrying the GK brand?
This association began many years ago, in 1983 to be exact, when Ron Ganim wanted his entire Region 5 women’s team to compete in matching uniforms. After all, they were the Region 5 TEAM, and they should look like a team.. The concept impressed USA Gymnastics and they approached GK about doing the same thing for all the regional team! What a Challenge! Eight women’s regional teams, nine men’s regional teams and six rhythmic regional team all marching out and competing in their regional team uniforms! The challenge being mostly in the fact that there is usually less than a month between the time the regional teams are selected and when they need the apparel for J.O. Nationals. That is just a few weeks to manufacture and ship hundreds of competitive uniforms and warm ups. GK met the challenge with determination and eagerness.
Managing the entire process has become a project which is enthusiastically tackled by Elite each year. Over the past 26 years since Region 5 first paraded out in their GK apparel, the process has been honed to a well oiled machine, which goes into action early each spring and is constantly being improved and streamlined. By the time the individually packaged parcels arrive at JO Nationals, months of preparatio9n has hundreds of man-hours have gone into the final results. From selecting the designs to packing the apparel with each athlete’s name, the project is a labor of love for all the Elite employees involved.
As the program advanced, trampoline and tumbling was included and recently, acrobatic gymnastics was added to the list.. Over the years, the commitment has expanded to include not just the JO National Championships, but most of the grass roots programs that feed and nurture these programs from the start. Programs such as:
Level 9 East & West Championships
Rhythmic Future Stars
Men’s Future Stars
The T&T Jumpstart Program
All benefit from the GK sponsorship. Most recently, two new programs have been added to the mix: The Rhythmic Youth Elite Squad, and the T&T Early Development Program.
Just in the years from 2001-2008, the commitment meant that GK furnished roughly 3800 pieces of free apparel PER YEAR to these programs. This included mens and womens competitive apparel and warm-ups for approximately 2400 athletes and coaches annually, and represents a contribution of over $2 million worth of product over the course of those 8 years.
Happily, Elite and USA Gymnastics have recently renewed the JO agreement which insures the tradition will continue and the expertise and dedication that Elite brings to the JO program will carry on for another 4 years.
The GK Leotards provided were a special design just for the JO program. They featured GK's mystique foiled colors on top of a bllck base with Swarovski crystal clusters spraying along the style lines.
See more customizable competitive long sleeve Leotards in GK's 2009-2010 competitive catalog:
GK Competitive Leotards
Technique magazine is the official publication of USA Gymnastics University and is published expressly to support the USA Gymnastics member gyms
Learn more about USA-Gymnasitcs at their website
Thank you, GK, for the beautiful apparel for our JumpStart National Team! The athletes are so proud to wear them and we are so pleased with the outstanding customer service you always offer. You’re the best!
Trampoline & Tumbling
Senior Program Director
JumpStart is the talent identification program, used to identify future elite athletes at a young age and provide education for their coaches as they prepare for the eventual move to the highest level.
Trampoline and Tumbling participants wear similar apparel as traditional gymnastics - Short Sleeve Gymnastics Leotards and trampoline shoes for the women. Men must wear short sleeved Comp Shirt (leotards) and either gymnastics pants or shorts. Synchronized teams must wear matching apparel. Click below to see these styles:
Womens Gymnastics Apparel
Mens Gymnastics Apparel
GK began making the Junior Olympics Leotards and Warm Ups in 1984. But the first time we were seen on the National stage was in Region 5 (Think Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio). Up to this time, Teams went to Championships in their individual club apparel.
The Gymnastics Region 5 team, led by Ron Ganim of Gymnastics World in Broadview Heights, Ohio, outfitted his squad in GK. When his region paraded out in their specially made Leotards, and Warm ups, USA-Gymnastics took notice. By 1984, they contracted with GK to make them all!
Over the years, the program has grown to include new gymnastics disciplines and programs, and Elite has never flinched, including Mens Gymnastics, Womens & girls gymnastics, as well as Trampoline and Tumbling. Today, as official apparel supplier to USA Gymnastics' Junior Olympic and Grassroots Development programs, GK outfits the very important developmental youth teams and programs for all five disciplines of gymnastics. Programs such as Future Stars, TOPS, the Level 9 East & West Championships, and the Jump Start Development program all receive the benefit of Elite’s special touch.
Ron still had a couple pictures from Back in the Day. First we see 1983 Gym World JO attendee Michelle Reyes - Posing with the Olympic Eagle in Her GK Region 5 Gymnastics Warm Ups. Send - Flash Forward to 1985 at the JO National Championships. Note the Different Colored Pants indicating the colors of Each Region. This color trend continues today.
Thanks to Ron and Joan for the Photos!
P.S. If anyone has any other photos from back in the early days, please forward them to us (email@example.com) with a small story. We will include them on our blog, with your permission!
1) GK Elite Sportswear, L.P. is a Female owned and operated business – started 28 years ago by Sallie Weaver in Reading, PA.
2) GK present tagline is: Choice of Champions: The World’s Leading Supplier of Gymnastics Apparel with the Best Variety, Best Fit, Best Quality, Best Service.
3) President Sallie Weaver is a former Gymnastics Gym Owner.
4) The Company started with 35 employees and now has over 300 and is the largest Supplier of Gymnastics Apparel in the world.
5) GK produces over 15 catalogs per year with both Stock and Special Order leotards, shorts, pants and warm ups that you choose the colors, fabrics and embellishments including embroidery, silk screens and genuine Swarovski Crystals.
6) GK will also create Free custom designs for teams.
7) GK is the sole manufacturer of adidas gymnastics apparel in the USA.
8) The GK brand is known for its leotard Fit – which has become the benchmark standard in gymnastics.
9) All fabrics made exclusively for GK and must pass our specifications for Color match, imperfections and stretch.
10) All garment designs are fit tested on human fit models.
11) All leotards manufactured are 100% quality control checked.
12) GK is presently endorsed by gymnastics Champions Nastia Liukin, Shawn Johnson, Jonathan Horton, Chellsie Memmel and Jana Bieger.
13) GK has produced apparel for the US Olympic Team for 4 of the past 5 Olympics.
14) GK is an international organization with a presence in 29 different Countries around the world.
15) GK is the Official apparel sponsor for USA Gymnastics Junior Olympics Programs – outfitting participating throughout the country.
16) Over the past 20 years, GK has been endorsed Female Gymnastics Champions including: Shannon Miller, Amanda Borden, Jaycie Phelps, Amy Chow, Svetlana Boguinskaia, Lilia Podkopaeva and Carly Patterson.
17) Mens Gymnastics Endorsees include: John Roethlisberger, Chainey Umphrey, John Macready, Vitaly Sherbo, Rustam Sharipov, Blaine Wilson, Jason Gatson, Paul Hamm and Morgan Hamm.
18) GK was also endorsed by Trampoline and Tumbling star Michael Devine.
19) GK has taken price in being the official Supplier to the following international teams: Ukraine, Germany, Belarus, The Netherlands, Australia, Slovenia.
20) In addition, at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, the following teams competed in GK: Bulgaria, Belgium, Columbia, Czech Republic, Egypt, Finland, Greece, Luxembourg, Puerto Rico and the Belarus Trampoline Team.
21) GK Supports the fight against Breast Cancer with a line of Breast Cancer Awareness Leotards, proceeds of which are donated to the National Breast Cancer Coalition Fund – www.stopbreastcancer.org.
22) GK is a longtime sponsor of the TOPS’s program. TOPs stands for Talent Opportunity Program. This program is designed to identify those girls between the ages of 7 and 11 who show particular talent in gymnastics and who are not already enrolled in an elite program or training for international competition.
23) GK offers a “Special Fit” leotard design for athletes with disabilities.
24) GK was the apparel supplier to Team USA at the Special Olympics Summer World Games in Shanghai China in 2007.
25) Our Purpose is to be the Athletes first Choice. We are committed to providing the ultimate in Service, quality, selection, innovation, value and integrity.
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