Categorized | Featured, Franchise

Local Customers Bring Popular Youth Sports Franchise Back to Cleveland

Cleveland, OH (May 28, 2013) – America’s first and fastest growing youth sports franchise has re-launched in Cleveland just in time for their fall sports programs, including flag football and instructional soccer.  i9 Sports returns to the Cleveland area thanks to Rob and Kristy Pietruszka, local parents from Strongsville who were inspired by their son, a former i9 Sports participant, to purchase the franchise and revitalize the league.

“As a father, all I want is for my son to be happy.  I’m not trying to get him into the NFL,” said co-owner Rob Pietruszka.  “Coaching him in i9 Sports flag football was the first time I saw him truly enjoying playing sports because it was so different than the ultra-competitive, win-at-all-costs leagues he had played in before.  Kristy and I wanted to do this for all Cleveland families who, like us, want their kids to have a safe, fun and convenient youth sports alternative.”

Back are the i9 Sports pillars of fun, safety and family-friendly scheduling along with an improved communication system helping families plan their weekends better.

“i9 Sports has a great communication system which we plan to utilize to the fullest,” said Rob’s wife and co-owner, Kristy Pietruszka.  “Online registration for fall sports is already up and running, and our new email protocols will ensure that our members will have up-to-date information in plenty of time to plan their weekends following their children’s games.  We think this will attract new customers to i9 Sports and deliver an even more fulfilling experience to parents who enjoyed i9 Sports programs before.”

Cleveland families are now again among hundreds of thousands across the country who are enjoying the i9 Sports experience.   This experience includes:

  • Same day practices and games, one day a week – great for working parents because it cuts down on driving, fuel costs, and interruptions to family life and school work.
  • An emphasis on fun – i9 sports encourages healthy competition and keeps the focus on the #1 reason kids play sports – to have fun – instead of the “win at all costs” culture of other leagues
  • No fundraising or mandatory volunteering.  No tournament travel, coach and referee fees, trophy expenses, fundraising or parent volunteering required.
  • Safety first – i9 Sports leads the way in education of coaches, officials, and parents on the importance of safe play.   In addition to being the first national league to implement a “when in doubt, sit ‘em out” policy, the league offers no-contact flag football and has banned heading in soccer to greatly reduce the risk of concussions.
  • Parental Pledge and Sportsmanship – Parents sign a pledge to be a model of good sportsmanship.   After each game, a child earns a sportsmanship award for showing great conduct with teammates and opponents.

Sportsmanship, in particular, played a key role in the Pietruszkas’ decision to revitalize the i9 Sports franchise in Cleveland.

“Too often it seems our children are subjected to the bad behavior of adults,” Rob Pietruszka explains.  “Coaches screaming at each other, parents placing far too much emphasis on winning over fun…that’s not what I wanted for my children and it’s not what other families in Cleveland like us want.  That’s the fundamental reason why we decided to bring i9 Sports back to the Southwest Cuyahoga and Medina areas.   We are thrilled to get started and have some fun!”

Families can pre-register for the fall seasons of flag football and instructional soccer now for only $99 each through May 31st. For more information or to register, visit or call 440-334-5555.

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About i9 Sports®

Based in the Tampa Bay, Florida area, i9 Sports® is the first and fastest-growing youth sports franchise company in the United States. With more than half a million members from New York to Hawaii, i9 Sports offers leagues, camps, and clinics for boys and girls ages 3-14 in today’s most popular team sports such as flag football, soccer, basketball and baseball.

A privately held company, i9 Sports was founded in 2003 by CEO Frank Fiume on the principle that the number one reason kids play organized sports is to have fun, not to become a draft pick.  Reinventing the industry, customers enjoy the i9 Sports Experience which emphasizes fun, safety and convenience as well as teaching the value of good sportsmanship.

Named #1 Children’s Fitness Franchise by Entrepreneur Magazine, i9 Sports has been ranked in their prestigious Franchise 500® issue the past six years. i9 Sports has also been listed among INC Magazine’s 5000 Fastest Growing Companies for the past three years and received Franchise Business Review’s Top 50 in Franchise Satisfaction Award for four years in a row.

For more information on i9 Sports, visit . To learn more about the low investment, low overhead i9 Sports franchise model, visit .

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