Monday, 12 March 2012

Why is it #TeamGB #trampolining athletes struggle to find sponsorship?

Tucked away in the heart of England there lives a centre of excellence. This isn't one of those nonsense marketing terms, sometimes used by businesses to draw attention to something which is typically quite mundane; this, is in fact, the complete opposite.

This is a genuine centre of excellence, which is the home of several world class athletes and up and coming athletes who represent Great Britain at World, Olympic and European level.

It is the home of NTGA (Northants Trampolining & Gymnastics Academy). Where these athletes and their coaches live and breathe trampolining, putting in 20+ hours a week in training, plus further time to help train and support other budding trampolinists through the competition grades to become the next regional and national champions. To see how good these guys are, please watch the video at the bottom of this post.

So you'd think they would have all sorts of sponsorship support from major businesses, especially in the year of 2012 when the Olympics comes to London. Unfortunately, you'd be wrong, very wrong indeed.

Most of the trampolinists train 20+ hours a week, and have to pay for their own equipment and stump up for the cost of travel across the UK and internationally for competitions (e.g. 2012 European Championships in St Petersburg). It's not cheap and the chances of earning a salary to help contribute towards these expenses are reduced because of the training required...it's a catch 22 situation. The dedication shown and achievements attained are not matched with the financial backing that is required.

These guys really do need some support and sponsorship. Fund raising events organised by friends and family and by the trampolinists themselves can only go so far. So if you know of an organisation or business that would like to sponsor the athletes and coaches, or contribute towards helping them, please can you "Like" the NTGA Facebook Page and get in touch this way; or contact them via @NorthamptonTGA on Twitter, or by email at info@ntga.co.uk

The NTGA Athletes representing Great Britain in The European Championships this year are:

James, (28) is 4 x British Champion and ranked 7th in the world in 2009. In 2011 he competed in the World Cup Finals. He has been selected for the GBR team in 2012 and will represent one fifth of the senior men's team for the European Championships in April this year. James is currently sponsored by the National Grid, a sponsorship which is up for review in April, and it is hoped this support will continue.
Steve, (26) has also just qualified for the GBR Team to make up one more fifth of the senior men's team representing Great Britain in the Euro's in St Petersburg in April 2012. He is currently a freelance sports journalist, working for the Northampton Chronicle & Echo and actively seeking sponsorship.
Penny, (22) has just secured her first GBR Team cap and represents Team GB at the European Championships in the Ladies under 22 Team. Penny is a part-time degree student at Northampton Uni' and also does part-time work for the County Council to help pay for her love of trampolining.

STOP PRESS: Penny has been selected as one of the Olympic Torch Bearers and will be carrying the flame on 2nd July 2012 through Corby.

These and a number of others at NTGA, plus their coaches, including Tracy Whittaker-Smith GBR Coach, would all welcome and appreciate any support that can be offered. Please spread the word.

James' qualifying routine for the Euro's



A recent club competition supporting "I am BG"

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