|Abstract:||The status of the syllable as a phonological unit has been both challenged and supported by phonetically-informed data. The Licensing-by-Cue framework contends that perceptibility, not syllable structure, is relevant in determining phonotactics (Steriade 1997), whereas gestural approaches demonstrate the importance of the syllable in accounting for differences in coordination (Browman and Goldstein 1995). In this paper, Gestural Association Theory (GAT) is formulated to unify the insights provided by both Licensing-by-Cue and gestural phonology. Following Gafos (2002), the grammar contains COORDINATION constraints which establish the temporal relationships between gestures in the output. Furthermore, two new types of constraints are introduced: ASSOCIATION and *OVERLAP. ASSOCIATION constraints define whether consonant and vowel sequences form a unit for the purpose of coordination, and *OVERLAP constraints encode phonotactic restrictions—including those based on perceptual grounds—by prohibiting the overlap of certain gestures. First, GAT is illustrated with an analysis of permissible consonant sequences in English. It is then extended to account for how speakers repair illegal word-initial clusters (e.g. /fp/, /zb/), which is examined using ultrasound imaging of the tongue.