Welcome back to our series, Cheerleading History, where we look at the history of cheerleading and how it has shaped the sport as we know it today.
This week, we will be looking at cheerleading between 1990-1992.
“By 1990, school cheerleading reaches 1.7 million athletes in the USA (source: National Federation of High School Associations); additionally, due to its popularity and overflow of interested athletes, non-school based organizations begin to offer cheer programs.” These cheer programs are more commonly referred to today as “All Star” cheerleading programs. All Star cheerleading programs are not affiliated with any schools, so their only focus is to compete, not to support other sports teams. Today, according the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) website, in the year 214-2015, there are roughly 134,000 athletes competing under the title of “Competitive Spirit Squad”. This does not include athletes categorized under “Dance”, which also falls into the category of “spirit sports”.
As cheerleading grew in popularity internationally, so did the need for event based sports. “Event based sports (American Football, Basketball and Handball, etc) begin to flourish throughout Europe…”. There Event based sports demanded the need for more cheerleaders to motive the crowds, as well as the players. “Interest in modern cheerleading at games begins to accelerate throughout the continent.” With the added interest and demand for cheerleading “…various educational clinics are conducted in Europe; National Cheer Federations also begin to develop quickly internally in support of the growing interest of young European athletes.”
The early 1990’s is when UCA expands beyond the United Kingdom for New Years Day Parades. “UCA sends USA cheerleaders to participate in the 1992 Paris New Years Day Celebration, and also the 1992 Vienna New Years Day Celebration introducing cheerleading to France & Austria for the very first time.” NCA beings to join in as well, as they start to send United States cheerleaders overseas for the first time. “NCA sends USA cheerleaders to Ireland’s St. Patrick’s Day Celebration in Dublin, Ireland…”. “Both Paris and Dublin events will continue over the next 2 decades.”
Check out the video below between 7:15 and 8:54 to see cheerleading between 1990 and 1992.
Next week we will look at cheerleading more in-depth between 1994 and 1996.
Check out all of the articles in this series here:
This article contains information from cheerunion.org, The International Cheer Union website. Please visit their website for more historical information or other cheerleading related information.
History of Cheerleading. (n.d.). Retrieved September 8, 2015, from http://cheerunion.org/history/cheerleading/
This articles contains information from www.nfhs.org, the Nationals Federation of State High School Association. For more information on Participation Statistics, please visit the National Federation of State High School Associations website.
“Participation Statistics.” National Federation of State High School Association. National Federation of State High School Association, 31 Dec. 2014. Web. 12 Oct. 2015. <http://www.nfhs.org/ParticipationStatistics/ParticipationStatistics/>.
Retrieve September 28th, 2015 from 40 Years of UCA – Anniversary Highlight Reel. UCA/ Varsity Spirit, 2014. Youtube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rocJZGainI