TOPs Diamond Team

After a summer full of TOPs training and testing, Ava, Kaelyn, Levi and Priya have all been named to TOPs Diamond Team.  This team consists of the strongest 7 year olds in the country.

The girls are tested on rope climb, splits, handstand holds, leg lifts, press handstands and cast handstands.

The girls will all receive a National TOPs Team Jacket and have their names listed along side many talented gymnasts who were once TOPs National team members.  Former TOPs team members include Chellsie Memmel, Carly Patterson, Samatha Peszek, Kyla Ross, Gabby Douglas, Jordyn Wieber and many others!

Congrats ladies – we are so proud of you!

Kayla Phillips – 2013 TOPs National Qualifier

8 year old Kayla Phillips has qualified to represent PEG at the TOPs National Testing. The testing will take place Oct.11 – 13 at the US Olympic Training Center in Huntsville, Texas.   This will be Kayla’s first trip to the ranch.

TOPs National testing is a two day competition.  One day tests physical abilities – which is a fancy way to say strength and flexibility.  The girls perform leg lifts, rope climb, presses, handstand holds, cast to handstands, sprints and dynamic kicks.  On the second day the girls show the national testing routines on vault, bars, beam, floor and dance.  The athletes are evaluated by the National Staff.  The goal is qualify for the TOPs camps in December!

Click to learn more about USAG’s TOPs Program.

Good luck Kayla!  We are proud of you!

2012 – 2013 Banquet

Now that the 2013 Season is over, the booster club hosted an amazing banquet for us to celebrate the year.  On May 19th the team gathered at the Sportman’s Lodge in Studio City.  It was a beautiful venue and perfect for the event.  Brittani McCullough was our guest speaker.  She spoke to the girls about hard work, dedication, overcoming injuries, and setting expectations for yourself.  Coach Liang and our senior gymnast Shayla also spoke.  You can view a photo album of the event here.

We gave out many awards over the course of the evening!

We recognized our Nationally ranked TOPs ladies:
Amari Evas, Bogdana Kadashevich, Isabella Martin and Kayla Phillips.

For each level we recognized the MVP on each event. This is the athlete that had the highest event score all season long.
Level 10 MVP – Shayla Barnett -Vault, Bars, Beam, Floor, AA
Level 9 MVP – Samantha Goldman -Vault
Level 9 MVP – Olivia Thomas – Bars
Level 9 MVP – Katie Chamberlain -Beam & All Around
Level 9 MVP – Caitlin Smith – Floor
Level 8 MVP – Amari Evans – Vault, Bars & All Around
Level 8 MVP – Bogdana Kadashevich – Bars
Level 8 MVP – Katelyn Searle – Beam
Level 8 MVP – Isabella Martin – Floor
Level 7 MVP – Sara East – Vault, Bars & All Around
Level 7 MVP – Ashley Peykar – Beam
Level 7 MVP – Amy Pham – Floor
Level 6 MVP – Sara East – Vault & Bars
Level 6 MVP – Kayleen Gordon – Beam
Level 6 MVP – Jaquelin Cane – Floor
Level 6 MVP – Samantha Figueroa – All Around
Level 5 MVP – Anahit Cholakyan – Vault
Level 5 MVP – Raina Miglas – Vault & All around
Level 5 MVP – Skylar Payab – Bars
Level 5 MVP – Grace Shuck – Beam
Level 5 MVP – Natalie Ramirez – Floor
Level 4 MVP – Isabella Lamoureaux – Vault
Level 4 MVP – Masha Tunik – Bars
Level 4 MVP – Taylor Krauss – Beam & All Around
Level 4 MVP – Madison Durham – Floor & All Around
Xcel Silver MVP – Dara Reyblat – Vault, Bars, Beam, Floor, AA
Xcel Bronze MVP – Kayla Sayble -Vault
Xcel Bronze MVP – Jennifer Fox – Bars
Xcel Bronze MVP – Carolina Ivchenko – Bars
Xcel Bronze MVP – Betsy Bass – Beam & Floor
Xcel Bronze MVP – Molly Cole – Floor
Xcel Bronze MVP – Alyssa Hanuscin – All Around

We recognized our State and Regional Champions: Kaelyn Diaz, Madison Durham, Jennifer Parandian, Kayla Phillips, Natalie Ramirez, Kayleen Gordon, Sara East, Jennifer Fox, Dara Reyblat & Amy Pham.

The last set of athlete awards we gave out were very special. Every girl on the team voted for who they thought should win each category. These awards are based 100% on peer review. We gave one award for the Optional, Compulsory and Xcel levels.

Most Inspirational:
Shayla Barnett, Nikki Imera & Isabella Fontal

Most Improved:
Sophia McClelland, Kaylee Cheek & Kayla Sayble

Best Sportsmanship:
Michaela Bove, Jorie Taylor & Molly Cole

Most Dedicated:
Caitlin Smith, Kayla Phillips & Betsy Bass

Best Attitude:
Katie Chamberlain, Madison Wolf, Madison Richman & Carolina Ivchenko.

Best attendance were Jesslyn Fernandez & Lexi Schloessman.

We recognized our graduating senior, Shayla Barnett. She will be going to UC Davis in the fall.

Finally, we honored Coach Yannick as PEG Coach of the year!

TOPs Camp

The girls on the plane to 2012 TOPs A Camp

Amari, Bog and Bella are headed to TOPs A Camp.

Coach Liang left this morning with the girls for TOPs A Camp. The ladies took a 6:24am flight (oof!) and landed in Houston around noon. The first day of travel is always rough for the west coasters. They have to take the earliest possible flight in order to arrive to Physical Abilities testing the first night.

TOPs Camp differs from Developmental Camp in a couple of way.
1. The girls all travel in a bus with other TOPs kids to the Ranch.
2. The girls stay in the large cabins, not the athlete motels.
3. The girls stay with a chaperone, not alone.
4. The last afternoon workout is open to the parents to watch.
5. There is a CLEANEST CABIN Award.
6. The final evening the girls put on a song and dance for the National Staff. This is a judges contest.
7. There is also a T-Shirt decorating contest. This is also judged by the National Staff.
8. In the past there has been a dance party on the final night. I hear rumors of a bon fire this time!

All of the girls are divided into color squads (I believe PEG is in the Yellow cabin this year). The yellow girls will eat, sleep and train together all week.

Tonight will consist of testing and likely a quick workout. The girls will head straight to bed after workout and dinner. Starting tomorrow the girls will start 2-a-day workouts, and all of their spare time will be spent creating and perfecting their song, dance and shirts. Evenings are spent either practicing for the show, taking the National Team photo and receiving their apparel.

This is Amari and Bogdana’s final trip to the Ranch for TOPs National Team Camps.. Next year they will have aged out. Bella is experiencing her first TOPs Team camp experience.

September Developmental Camp Summary

Caitlin, Amari and Izzy pose in front of US Olympic Training Site sign.

Caitlin, Amari and Izzy pose in front of US Olympic Training Site sign.

From Sept. 9 – 13 the girls traveled to Texas for the September Developmental Camp.

Everyone woke up early to catch our 6:45am flight.  Once the plane landed it was a rush to grab the rental car and get on the road.  After about an hour drive everyone makes a quick stop at Krogers (the last sign of civilization before you hit the ranch) to grab supplies and snacks. This time we were advised to bring bug spray to avoid West Nile Virus!

After another 30-40 minutes of driving through the country and forest, we arrived at camp.  The girls found their room assignments and unpack. There are very strict rules about coaches not being allowed in the girls cabins.  They must be very independent – setting alarms so they are on time to all training sessions and meals, doing their own hair, eating properly, etc.  There is no time to relax once the girls arrived as there is physical abilities testing and a short workout the very first night. Before and after each workout the girls line up tallest to shortest.  At then end of each workout Valeri speaks to the athletes about his impressions and goals.  He thanks the girls for working hard – they reply in unison with “Thank You Valeri, Coaches and National Staff Goodbye!”

Line Up

The girls line up before and after workout.

Physical abilities testing was a little like TOPs on steroids.  It includes rope climb (higher than TOPs), vertical jump, cast handstands (10 instead of 5), levers, press handstands, handstand holds, front tuck sticks, back tuck sticks, full twist sticks, kip cast handstands and flexibility.  Each section is scored out of ten.  It’s definitely a good way to keep tabs on where your conditioning is strong or weak.

Starting the next morning the girls had 2 – a -day trainings.  The went from 8:30 – 12:00ish and then again from 4-7:00ish.  This included optional training in the morning on vault, bars, beam, floor and dance.  In the afternoon they focused more on  compulsory and basic skills once again doing bars, beam, floor and dance, but substituting trampoline for vault. Each day the girls verified one event.  They had to show their skills in a pressure situation to the National Staff, Valeri Liukin and Brevet Judge Kristy Phillips. In between training sessions the girls hung out with the other athletes, watched movies, played outside, tried to find cell phone reception and napped.

The coaches spent breaks and evenings receiving valuable coaching advice from the National Staff.  There were tumbling clinics by Valeri Liukin and Ivan Ivanov, beam clinics by Tammy Biggs, bars with Valeri, Tom Forrester and Neil Resnick and an informative session on the code of points with Kristy Phillips.

The athletes were sent home with goals and suggestions on what to work on. So far, training back at PEG has been going well!  Amari and Izzy are heading back the last weekend in September for National TOPs Testing

Leaving the Karolyi's Ranch

Amari, Caitlin and Izzy pose with the departure sign.


Random Tid Bits:
The food is SO much better at Developmental Camp vs. TOPs camp.
Kids love goats – ask them what pictures they took and all they will talk about it the goats!
Kids say the funniest things.


2012 National TOPs Testing

The results are in – PEG will be sending 6 girls to the 2012 National TOPs testing.

2012 TOPs National Testing Qualifiers

The 6 girls headed to the 2012 TOPs National Testing:
Bella, Bog, Izzy, Amari, Katelyn, & Journi

The girls will travel from Sept. 27 – 30 to the middle of the San Houston National Forest.  This testing takes place at the famed Bela Karolyi /National Team / Olympic Training Center.

Let’s meet the girls!

Bella (8) – this will be her first National testing, although she did attend the TOPs invitational campin May.

They had just been told they qualified.

Bog (10)- She’s a seasoned pro at this TOPs stuff. This is her third National testing. She’s also been to A camp, B camp and was top 3 in physical abilities at the May Invitational Camp. You can also see her featured in the Ontario stop of the Kellogg’s Tour!
Izzy (10) – This is Izzy’s second time at National testing. She will also be headed to ranch in early September for developmental camp.
Amari (10) – This is also Amari’s 3rd National testing. Amari attended A camp last year and will be joining Izzy at developmental camp in September.
Katelyn (10) – This is her first trip to the ranch. We’re sure it won’t be her last! She will be featured at the Anaheim stop of the Kellogg’s Tour.
Journi (9) – Although she qualified for testing last year, she was unable to attend. This trip will be her first time at the National Team Training Center.

What is TOPs you ask?  It stands for Talent Opportunity Program.  The girls participate in local tests and are evaluated on strength, flexibility and basic skills.  The scores are sent to the National Office and compared against the rest of the country.  The top percent of testers are invited to the National Team Training Center for National Testing.  National testing involves much more difficult skills, but the same flexibility and strength tests.  The girls are judged by the National Staff.  The highest ranked girls are invited to the National Team (or A Camp) and the next group of highly ranked girls are invited to B camp.  Not everyone makes national testing or camp, it is a huge honor.

Inspired by McKayla Maroney, the girls are not impressed!

PEG is very proud of all the hard work and dedication the TOPs girls put in over the summer.  Here’s to a great testing in September.

Kellogg’s Tour Stops – Ontario, Anaheim and Los Angeles


Katelyn show’s her stuff on the beam.

We got some exciting news today. PEG will have 3 athletes featured in various Kellogg’s Tour performances. These girls were chosen from their audition clips. You can view the clips by clicking on each girls name.

Bogdana – performing in Ontario, CA on Sept. 9
Caitlin – performing in Los Angeles, CA on Sept. 15
Katelyn -performing in Anaheim, CA on Sept. 16

The girls will be performing throughout the entire show, doing gymnastics, dance and acting. In the words of USA Gymnastics, “This is an excellent opportunity for the gymnast who [is] selected to star in a large production in front of huge audiences and have the chance to shine alongside our Olympic Champions.”

Bog strikes a pose on the beam.

These girls are performing in addition to Anna, Amy, Sierra, Kyla, Maddie, Stephanie, Amanda and Betsy who will be participating in the opening and closing ceremonies at the Los Angeles, Staples Center show. These girls were selected in a raffle the gym held. PEG earned the spots based on ticket sales.

You can still purchase tickets! Contact KAITLIN NICKOLS – p. 213.742.7209 | f. 213.742.7280

Mention you are with Paramount Elite Gymnastics if you want to sit with the group.

Bring on September

September represents the one year anniversary of our opening, and it is going to be a crazy month at Paramount Elite Gymnastics.

Everything kicks off with a bang on Sept.8 & 9 for the NAWGJ-SC’s Judges Cup. This Fiesta themed competition will the first held at PEG. There are over 300 athletes from 15 gyms participating over the weekend.  We can’t wait to get the season started!

US Olympic Training Center

The girls head to a morning workout at the National Team Training Center in Huntsville, TX.

That same weekend, Amari, Izzy and Caitlin will be heading to the National Team Training Cente/ US Olympic Training Center in Huntsville, TX.  The girls have been invited to participate in the Sept. Developmental Camp.  The ranch is always a cool experience – a bizarre mix of intense gymnastics and peacocks, camels and donkeys.  The girls are excited because they get to stay in the motels and not the cabins this trip.  Check back to hear their thoughts on the trip.

The following weekend is the Kellogg’s Tour.  PEG sold the most tickets of any club in SoCal.  As a result, Anna, Sierra, Betsy, Stephanie, Amy, Amanda, Maddie and Kyla get to participate IN the show. It will be such a cool experience.  On top of that Shayla, Elizabeth, Katie and Mary get to meet and greet the cast.  The girls are all super pumped to meet the fab five!  We will be blogging about the experience at the show, but you can check our Facebook for quick updates and pictures!

The next weekend we are heading to Coach Patty’s in Camarillo for her famous Out of This World Invite.  Everyone loves competitions at Coach Patty’s.  There’s great food for the coaches, great goody bags and awards for the kids, and a wine tasting shop right next door for the parents!

Finally, the last week of September is National TOPs testing.  While results are not out yet, we expect to be sending coaches and many athletes back to the National Team Training Center for the test.

Keep checking back for updates on all of these amazing experiences.