Although the overall message of the film is positive -- don't give up, believe in yourself, work hard to achieve your goals -- there are some mixed messages given by adults that negate some of the positive messages. Sally Peterson, one of the gymnastic judges, cheats on her ratings and only changes her behavior when she sees she'll be punished for it, a fact the film seems to gloss over. And Kate praises one of the kids for being cruel to Chelsea, the film's resident bad girl, not seeming to realize how hypocritical her behavior is. But, overall, the film emphasizes standing up for yourself.
It's mentioned that Maddy's mom died when she was younger. It's also shown in flashbacks that a girl falls and becomes paralyzed.
Kate and Shane are shown kissing and hugging, and a few chaste kisses on the cheek are shown among the younger characters. Budding sexuality also is explored as Maddy is shown stuffing her bra, and some of the characters flirt with each other.
Although no actual profanity is used, there is quite a bit of mean-girl behavior with characters calling each other names such as "cow" and "witch." An adult also calls another adult a "prat."
Characters are shown eating at McDonald's more than once.
Shane and Kate are shown drinking wine at a restaurant.