What do three former Olympic gymnasts: Monica Gorman (1980), Kathleen Finnegan (1984), and Bonnie Wittmeier (1984) have in common? They all trained at the Winnipeg Gymnastics Centre. The 11,000 square foot facility, which first opened doors in 1977, is home to one of Canada’s largest gymnastics programs, boasting over 1400 active members in the 2018 calendar year. The person in charge of keeping the lights on is none other than Celia Champion, current owner and longtime gymnastics coach who took over the operations of the facility nearly a decade ago.
Working as the Owner, Head Coach and Facility Manager is no easy task; Celia is not only responsible for processing payroll, but she’s also accountable for scheduling competitions, facilitating coaches’ meetings, planning gym space for weekly training programs and much more. Until just recently, the faculty used a monthly calendar to detail dates of interest for both faculty and members. It was Celia’s responsibility to update the schedule at the end of every month, and with the gym open 6-7 days a week, setting aside time to organize and edit the gym’s monthly calendar became increasingly challenging to manage.
After years of frustration, Celia reached out to the team at Magnatag Visible Systems to develop a calendar system that could display the entirety of the gym’s schedule in a large, easy to read format. With the help of Magnatag’s GiantYear® 365-day magnetic dry-erase calendar, the Winnipeg Gymnastics Centre is now able to display their complete program schedule on a single dry-erase board.
“We lay out an entire year’s worth of competitions, meetings, and priority bookings on the whiteboards. We actually have two: one for the coaching staff and parents, and one for myself, which also helps me with administrative duties in addition to our regularly scheduled agenda”, said Celia.
The gym’s calendar system is designed to highlight fixed dates (such as gym closings, holidays, and competitions) with color-coded cardholder magnets. Any other last-minute changes that need to be made to the schedule are then added to the board and emphasized with a colored signal magnet. With this method in place, gym members can reference the schedule as needed and the coaching staff can add notes when conflicts arise, establishing a line of connection that is always open. Celia’s calendar is managed in a similar method, with administrative duties also being tracked with the use of the cardholder magnets.
“Using the small calendar was such a pain. There was no room to add notes, things were constantly changing, and it became somewhat of a mess. With the new 365-day calendar, I can display everything I need in a single whiteboard. I know it’s also a big help for parents too, as competition times and dates will be posted as we receive them, and rather than having to check in with the coaches at the end of a practice, they can simply reference the board when they come to pick up their children.”
If you'd like to learn more about the Winnipeg Gymnastics Center, you can visit their website at http://winnipeggymnasticscentre.com/