I look forward to not only seeing my daughter grow as a cheerleader under Chris’ tutelage, but also, seeing Chris succeed in all his future endeavors.
Please accept this letter as my recommendation for Mr. Christopher Cote as an experienced and reputable gymnastic/cheerleading coach, mentor and role model with a solid and respected following and a business mindset and drive that will allow him to succeed in anything he puts his mind to.
I was introduced to Chris Cote in 2012 when my daughter was referred to him for extra cheerleading/tumbling lessons. My daughter, at age 7, was already a 5-year member of a competing gymnastics facility that she enjoyed and was advancing at a slightly above average pace. But, due to the trusted referral, I was open to exploring new facilities in order to advance her skills even more. After just 3 1-hour sessions with Chris, my daughter’s skills and confidence were elevated more than we had experienced in months of multi-hour sessions at the other gym. He has the unique ability to challenge the gymnast and, rather than getting frustrated and giving up, the children can’t wait for the next class. I was also pleasantly surprised at Chris’ ability to interact with parents. My previous experience with coaches was that they worked in the gym with the children and “office staff” interacted with the parents; it was “like pulling teeth” to get the coaches to have a conversation, but not with Chris. He is approachable and responsive to both children and parents. As a result of all these positive experiences, I ended up severing our 5-year relationship with the other gymnastics facility in order to allow for more availability to work with Chris. Then, when Chris informed me that he was forming the Empire Cheer squad, we did not hesitate to join.
With no shortage of gymnastics facilities in my area, I choose to drive 45 minutes each way in order for my daughter to train with Coach Chris. I look forward to not only seeing my daughter grow as a cheerleader under Chris’ tutelage, but also, seeing Chris succeed in all his future endeavors.
Chris recognizes that his role is not only as a coach to teach technical skills and competition in gymnastics, but also to teach life skills.
I have known Chris Cote for over four years. I have assisted him in teaching cheerleading classes, boys’ classes, and boys’ team. He is the head coach for the Boys’ Team at Empire Gymnastics and has coached my son for the past three years.
Chris has a coaching style that is based on a model of the “whole child.” In other words, Chris recognizes that his role is not only as a coach to teach technical skills and competition in gymnastics, but also to teach life skills. On the technical side, he is very good at breaking down skills, and teaching lead up drills before performing more difficult skills. In so doing, he recognizes that each gymnast is an individual, and modifies the manner in which he coaches and speaks to a child based on each child’s personality, feedback (both solicited and unsolicited) from parents, and his own perception of the child’s best learning methods based on thoughtful consideration. He is patient, knows when to back off, and when to push harder. He also recognizes when he has made a mistake, admits it, regrets it, and learns from it. This is an uncommon attribute in any human being.
In addition to technical abilities, Chris’ mentoring of the children comes in different forms. For instance, he may take the children aside, sit them down, and tell them a story about when he was a gymnast, how he addressed setbacks, perceived failures, made life-long friends, and persisted in the most difficult sport of gymnastics. He explains to the children that the sport of gymnastics (or any sport or anything in life) is not about “winning.” Rather, it is about doing your best at every practice and every meet, and encouraging everyone (even your competitors) who has taken on the challenge to be a competitive gymnast to do their best as well.
As to his management skills, he had been the head coach of the Boys’ Team at NEGX for many years. He had taken on this role, for the most part, on his own. This role required all levels of management from the mundane collection of fees and ensuring that the boys have the correct sized uniforms, to the technical management of ensuring that each child is learning the skills necessary to compete at the appropriate level (which he does with an age range of 5-17 and skill levels from Level 3-9), and finally, to communicate effectively with each parent about all facets of the child’s growth, maturity, skill level, and appropriate training. He accomplished this team management while he continued to coach classes and the NEGX’ girls team full time.
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