LAAAP, the Los Angeles Alternative Athletic Program is a non-profit organization founded by Ms Tanya Berenson. Ms. Berenson, director of the Los Angeles School of Gymnastics has always been passionate about the positive role that Gymnastics can play in the lives of people who may have met with hard times in their lives, particularly youth. The LAAAP program is an alternative intervention program that incorporates athletics. This enables people who are in less fortunate situations to replace negative behavior with a positive, healthy activity that they can incorporate into their daily routine in order to get on their feet.

An alternative to traditional methods of intervention for at-risk youth

The LAAAP is designed to be an alternative to traditional methods of intervention providing a supportive and positively re-enforced environment to participants. The program itself is a never-before-seen collaboration of various methods of treatment and intervention and includes clinical, psychological, academic, physical and overall wellness components which combine to create a very non-traditional alternative to more traditional interventions in at risk demographics.
The program is the culmination of a number of Ms. Berenson’s personal passions, Tanya has spent much of her career acting as a role model to youth in the Los Angeles community and she and the team have designed the program based on this extensive experience of where their needs lie. LAAAP is uniquely designed and after going through the intake process and being accepted there is a holistic approach taken with participants.

A comprehensive intake and assessment process

From the very first stages of intake all areas of personal wellbeing are taken into consideration. At the first stage of intake clients are taken through a personal assessment process with an assessor on a one-on-one basis. Once this process has been undertaken program staff begin to assess the viability of various funding sources. If a community funding source is not available for the client in question then a scholarship may be offered.
Once the initial assessment and funding procedure is completed a comprehensive physical examination is undertaken. This is done with a view to making sure that the program that the client is enrolled in is appropriate to their own physical needs and their fitness level. Also at this stage meeting times are scheduled and their personal coach will be assigned to them.

A holistic approach to client’s well being

After the intake and assessment phases are completed the client is then fully enrolled. They then begin a period of weekly coaching sessions, needs assessment, counseling and assistance with their academic pursuits. This program really sets participants up to take on life with all that they need in their arsenal to succeed and make sure that they never find themselves back in risky behavior patterns. The personal sense of achievement that they get from the physical and academic training combined with the ongoing counseling really gives clients the upper hand once they graduate from the program.

Hosted at a world class facility in Culver City

The entire LAAAP is hosted at a world class facility at the Los Angeles School of Gymnastics in Culver City. Program leadership is undertaken by Mrs Alla Svirsky, a 40 year veteran of Gymnastics Coaching, 3 time Olympic Coach, 2 time Olympic judge and Sports Hall of Fame Inductee. Mrs Svirsky launched the Los Angeles School of Gymnastics which has become one of the leading centers for athletic success for youth in Los Angeles. The School has served over 1,000,000 families since opening through various programs and is very committed to community outreach through its programs.

Anyone interested in finding out more about the program can get in touch with the School, located at 8450 Higuera Street in Culver City, by phoning (310) 204 1919 or emailing