My nine-year-old daughter has been taking gymnastics at the Kadena Youth Center for about three months now.  She had previously taken gymnastics classes for a few years at the YMCA near where we were stationed before coming to Okinawa, so she had some skills before signing up here, although that’s not a requirement. From our experience with the Youth Center gymnastics, we have found that they are very detailed and precise when it comes to learning skills.  That to me is great, I like that they’re learning the correct way to do their skills and the girls look like graceful, future Olympic gymnasts doing their stuff.

My daughter’s one complaint is the rope climb. It’s kicking her behind.  Physically she’s ready, mentally she can’t get over the height fear thing.  Other than that, she loves gymnastics, receives a great sense of accomplishment for giving it her all and is getting a great work-out.

The cost per month for us is $40.00 (there is an Air Force Club card discount) for a one hour class each week.  Leotards are offered (and recommended) for $30.00. My daughter’s leotard had to be ordered and once she received it she was so excited because she said it made her feel like part of the group.  Level One classes are offered to children 5 and up, boys and girls.  Kids will be evaluated to decide which level they will start in. No Sports physical needed. From what I understand there is a waiting list, except maybe for homeschoolers that can come a little earlier in the day, but it’s worth the wait.

My son is also taking gymnastics at the Youth Center — his is called “Daddy, Mommy & Me” and is for toddlers.  It’s a great first chance at listening to/following a teacher and there is lots of running & jumping to get the wiggles out!!  For more info on gymnastics classes you can call the Kadena Youth Center at 634-0500.



My six year old daughter is doing cheerleading for a football team through Kadena Youth Sports.  We have a lovely Coach and Assistant Coach teaching the girls tons of cheers and ensuring the girls are having fun.  It’s very cute and entertaining for us parents to watch.

We paid a one time fee of $80.00 for cheerleading. These fees cover the cheerleading uniform, long sleeve shirt and shorts to go underneath the uniform, matching socks and pom-poms.  There were other optional fees for matching hair bows (we paid four dollars) and I’ve seen where other cheer teams have bought matching sweats and jackets but I’m not sure of the cost of those.  Of course there’s no pressure to buy these extra items.  We did have to get a Sports Physical for cheerleading since we went through Kadena but I think if you go through MCCS on Foster, no sports physical is needed, just proof of age. Starting age for cheerleading is five and goes up to fifteen years old.

If my daughter had one complaint about cheerleading, it would probably be that it’s too cold.  But don’t let this stop you from signing up, there’s always indoor cheerleading for the basketball team.

The number for Kadena Youth Sports is 634-1384.  PLEASE, pretty pretty please, chime in with info on other bases/off-base where we could enjoy these same sorts of activities!!  Thank ya muchly!


  1. HI! if you only knew how excited i am right now!? i’m pretty sure this made my day! i jus moved out here with my son in november to be with my husband sense he’s stationed here! Back at home i did gymnastics basically my whole life, but once i got out of club and joined my high school team i didn’t really excel as much as i really wanted too! its been a couple of years sense i’ve done gymnastics and on top of that i had my son last year!…..Now i’m 19 years old and i was reading and i didn’t see anything if they had classes for people around my age!? and i really miss doin gymnastics! it was/is a great passion to me and i was really hopin if someone could write me back with infomation about the gymnastics program in more detail, i.e. the limit on the age you need to be etc etc.! thank you so much

  2. Is there a place for US girls (and boys) to practice competitive gymnastics either on or off base? My kids are in levels 4 and 5 and would like to continue to move up the levels and to compete.

    Thanks for any information you can provide.

      • My daughter is in the same level I’m living here currently and trying to find a place out in town. If I find any thing I’ll email you back or if you here of anything please let me know.

        • Tracie,
          THanks… this is the one thing that i’m most worried about moving to oki. My daughter spends 14 hours a week right now at her gym, and i’m just hate to see all those skills, time & MONEY go to waste! Let me know please.. I’ve heard of Rythmic gymnastics through the MCCS.
          Grace Gymnastics Club

          Elementary/Jr. High School aged children

          Weekdays: 6-9 pm/ Saturdays: 3-7 pm/ Sunday: 1-4 pm


          Weekdays: 5-6 pm/ Saturdays: 2-3 pm

          They welcome free observations of the class if you would rather take a look first. They also offered a website, however, it was hard to navigate because it was primarily in Japanese. Just in case, I listed their contact information below:

          Phone: (098) 936-8591

          see if that might head you in the right direction..

          • My daughter goes to Grace. And though they allow Americans there, they do NOT treat Americans fairly. There was an opportunity to go to Sydney. My daughter came home with a note that said to reply BEFORE July 14. She got it July 10, she told them July 11 that she is going. When she asked a question on July 15 (there was no asking questions on July 14, she assumed she was straight) they told her she was not going because she didn’t tell them ON the 14th. I kept the note. All they could say was, “Sorry” and act like they didn’t care. Those little Japanese girls ridicule and bully my daughter, it is NOT a good environment. The ONLY reason why I allow her to stay is because she loves the sport. But Momma Bear hangs out more often now!

          • I’m moving to Okinawa in a few weeks, won’t have base privileges and am looking for gymnastics classes for my daughters- ages, 9, 7, and 5. They all speak both English and Japanese so would be okay in either, but would like something similar to the USA gymnastics on base where they can participate in competitions. Any one have suggestions? Are there ways to get on base for the classes or places off base that you can recommend?
            Thanks so much!

  3. Does anybody know of any gymnastics classes or sports teams off base? I have heard of soccer teams for older kids but my girls are in the 5/6ish age range.

    We have been on the waitlist for level 1 gymnastics for 18 months! We did get called once for an opening but it was during the hours that my girls were still in school… We have cheered for two seasons on Kadena (girls had a blast) and played T-Ball & Soccer with First Steps. We signed up for soccer but we are number 30 on the waitlist so there is no way we will make it for this fall.

    My girls would love to play soccer or t-ball or cheer out in town. The girls speak Japanese so that would not be a problem for them / (I, however, do not speak Japanese thus some of the problem finding activites out in town.).