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Community Highlights: Meet Adam Rufkahr of Platinum Athletics

Today we’d like to introduce you to Adam Rufkahr.

Hi Adam, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
My wife, Kendra, started as a competitive gymnast in St. Louis and then started cheering in high school and I started cheering in high school (St. Charles West) when I was a senior. We both were given scholarships to Lindenwood University where we met. Since our schedules were pretty packed but we were both very passionate about the sport, we picked up coaching jobs and actually at one point were coaching at rival gyms! Once we graduated, we couldn’t leave the sport and Kendra signed on for a Gym Manager position at a local gym. Unfortunately there was a disagreement about personnel which caused us to pursue our own gym!

The basic agreement was that we would run the day to day operations and two other families would be responsible for the books and the back of the house stuff. Fast forward another five years and we learned a hard lesson about trust which ultimately put our entire program at risk. Again kind of its own story here but we were faced with either shutting our doors or Kendra and I had to do what we try to teach our athletes and when you hit a problem or obstacle, you figure it out. One HUGE part of our gym is success through hard work and this was a real-life opportunity to not just talk the talk but to walk the walk. The only BIG OBSTACLE here was that this was right at the end of a season when families are deciding to stay or not and new families are looking to us to see if they want to join for the next season so we had to do all of this behind the scenes without letting anyone know anything was wrong. Our BIGGEST thing at Platinum is family and in fact that is what we call our athletes and parents is our “Platinum Family” so failing was not an option. If we were to shut our doors where would our kids go and how could we look at them and tell them that their season had to end? We refused to give up and so we struggled, we stressed but we never gave up and together Kendra and I made it work.

Here we are almost a decade later and we are the longest established and most successful gym in St. Louis. We have set MULTIPLE records for placements, number of teams, national championships, paid bids to national competitions where we compete against the best teams in the country. We went from five teams when we started to now over DOUBLE that and have teams for ages 4 through 30+. Our athletes have gone on to train at some of the best colleges in the country including Louisville, UK, Moorehead, Memphis, etc. All this done with hard work, heart and love for the sport which is why our motto at Platinum is “Tough as Platinum, Heart of Gold” and every one of our uniforms has a gold heart on the back of it!

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Definitely not, between starting our own gym in the middle of the season because the gym where Kendra was manager was doing things we didn’t agree with but we didn’t want to leave our kids and families high and dry to basically having to start over and completely restructure the business five years later without letting anyone know that anything was wrong. We’ve hit our fair share of obstacles and challenges but the thing is that we just work hard, believe in our program and what we stand for and that has always gotten us through.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about Platinum Athletics?
We specialize in Competitive (All Star) Cheerleading. We are known for our hard work and over a decade of success. We continue to break records and set the bar for competitive cheerleading in our area. We work hard, have fun and the gym is a family. Whether you are someone that is just walking in for the first time or an athlete that has been with us for years, you are part of something special and you are a part of our Platinum Family! The thing I think that I’m most proud of is the way that we are a positive influence in our athlete’s lives. MANY of our coaches were previous athletes and continue to cheer with us. We have families that we have helped and seeing our athletes walk in the door with no confidence or low self-esteem and then by the time they leave us, they are leaders of not just their sport but their community is something that I will always be proud of.

The thing I’d like the readers to know about us is that we are one of the best programs in the area for competitive cheerleading and tumbling. Whether they are someone that is just looking to try out all star cheer or maybe they just want to do classes to help with their school team or maybe they are looking for an established successful gym that will give them a place to belong and a family that they can join Platinum Athletics is the place for them!

Any big plans?
We continue to grow year after year and try to CONSTANTLY outdo our previous year. We actually just opened up a BRAND NEW division for our gym that will allow more school cheer athletes to come in and try all star so we are REALLY excited about that!


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