Cheerleading is over 118 years old. Let that sink in for a minute. We view it as a fairly recently developed sport, but it has been over a hundred year in the making. Throughout all of the years, and through the evolution of what the sport has became, one fact will always remain and most cheerleaders can agree – it will change your life in so many other ways than just as a sport, and that it is definitely something worth doing. And, we love doing it! It drives confidence in us, it proves that hard work pays off in the skills we progress to achieve, and all while surrounded by supportive teammates all set out for most of your same goals. We take losing at a competition better than any other athletes, knowing that losses make us stronger just as mistakes help us learn. We learn that maybe we won’t come out on top in a division, but yet still give it our all, to our best ability for those two minutes and thirty seconds and still walk away proud of ourselves. We learn it’s much more than shaking pom poms and yelling on the sidelines, it’s about making an impact with the sports team from the sidelines and keeping the crowd pumped up. We experience feeling the energy of the music during a performance and that adrenaline rush of performing a routine and we can’t get enough of it. The teammates become a second family. We become an inspiration and role model for younger athletes. And when we step away from it, and finally put up the pom poms, it is truly a sport that you can walk away proudly, confidently, and with a smile on your face being able to say, “I did that, I was a part of that.” Happy belated birthday, Cheerleading, we love every aspect of you!
Our staff asked a few cheerleaders in the gym “Why do you cheer and what do you love most about cheerleading?” Here are their responses!
“Like singing, it’s something that makes me feel special about myself and is special in my heart. I love working with a team. Also stunting because we have to work together and support each other. I also enjoy supporting those around me as well as other teams at competitions. I mean, we’re all competing for the common goal!”
“Cheer is my way to escape reality. I can flip, stunt, jump, and do my own thing and not have to focus on anything else. I love making new friends and then being able to show off the cool stuff we’ve accomplished to everyone in competitions.”
“It looked really fun to do and seeing videos showed me what I could work for and achieve. I love the family aspect of the team and how the community feeling coming together for one common goal to our season.”
It looked fun and like a good way to keep up with my grades and stay out of trouble. The team aspect, the teamwork, and the encouragement from teammates really led me to wanting to become a cheerleader. I enjoy the fact that it doesn’t look like we do much as cheerleaders but in reality we work our tails off, become better as a team, and bring people together.”
“It’s the only thing I’m always excited to do. Even with morning practices, which I dislike, I still enjoy going to because it’s what I love to do. I love the team aspect, friendships made throughout the season, and the family formed through it.”
“It makes me happy. If I’m in a bad mood, when I come into the gym just the atmosphere alone already makes me feel happier. I started cheering because I looked up to girls that cheered and wanted to be them. Now I strive to be even better than those I looked up to, to become that role model for younger kids just like I was. I just knew cheering was the sport I was meant to do.”
And then there’s Coach Ben…
“I was forced! My sisters both cheered and mom wanted me to tryout because it helped her after school travel schedule. After that and over the years, I’ve come to love the sport and what it has evolved into. I love the adverse athleticism that this sport requires and enjoy helping inspire those around me enjoying the sport as well.”