Friday, July 23, 2010
Have you noticed spirit lacking in your school? For cheerleaders or anyone who wants to increase school spirit, here are some ideas:
1. On Game Days, Have Everyone Wear Your School Colors. Have the morning announcements remind everyone the day before a game to wear the schools colors. Have your group of friends participate every week and get creative!
2. Decorate the players lockers. On game day, nothing will get the players pumped up more than to walk into school and see their lockers decorated. Even if your players don't use their lockers, this gives the school the look and feel of having school spirit. Continue to do it for every sport and the players will love the recognition and become accustomed to it, that they would be upset if it didn't happen before every game.
3. Paint enthusiastic posters before every game and put them up around school. Not only does this build up your school teams, but this also gets the student body pumped up for a game. It also reminds them of the game, therefore bumping up attendance at games.
4. Have weekly mandatory pep rallies. Most schools has scheduled pep rallies for special games only. Having pep rallies every week brings the entire student body together and recognizes every sport. Get everyone involved and have the students put together and run the pep rallies. This not only creates school spirit but is also a fun excuse to get out of class early.
5. Have school wide tailgate party before games. This brings together the students and parents. Have everyone bring food and have clubs supply soda and water. Make sure the cheerleaders and the team who is playing are there before they warm up for the game. Have someone announce them and make it fun! There are a lot of ways to make a tailgate party memorable and worth going to every week!
These are only some ideas on how to build school spirit, but they are the most important ones and should boost school spirit fast and efficiently!
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Tips for flyers in cheerleading stunts. Whether your a new or veteran flyer, these tips will help your performance, prevent injury, and get your bases off your back!
1. Hold your weight! It does not matter how much a flyer weighs. It only matters how well the flyer holds her weight. If you don't hold your own body weight, this can make a 80 lb. flyer feel like 150 lbs. If you do hold your weight it can make a 150 lb flyer feel like 120 lbs. To hold your own weight lift up not down.
2. Lock Out your Legs! Never bend your legs, no matter what happens underneath you. You want your legs locked out from the moment you get up in the air, not bending them until your feet are on the ground again. If your stunt group is doing a hitch, liberty, scorpion, or any other stunt that calls for one leg to be bent, the other leg needs to stay locked out the entire time.
3. Squeeze, squeeze, squeeze! Squeeze every muscle in your body when your up in the air. It is extremely important to squeeze your legs and butt muscles. Some flyers squeeze when they are only in the stunt and not when they are cradling. This is wrong! Squeeze your muscles throughout the entire stunt sequence.
4. Smile! I can't tell you how many times a squad has performed a stunt sequence and the flyers are not smiling. This is a big no no. The audience looks at the flyer's face and if the flyer's face is not enthusiastic and energetic, the whole stunt looks boring. This can cost your team points if you're competing and make your audience lose interest, no matter how awesome the stunt may be.
5. Don't Look Down! Being that high in the air is intimidating and scary, but don't look down. Keep your chest, head, and chin up. If you look down, guess what? You're going to come down. Pick a spot high in the air and keep your eyes on that spot throughout the entire stunt.
6. Confidence! Being confident in you abilities as a flyer and your teammates abilities as bases and back spots is very important. If you're not confident in yourself or your teammates, the stunt will not only have a greater chance of falling, but will also cause the stunt to look sloppy and dangerous.
Stick to these steps and you're performance as a flyer and your team's performance as a whole will improve greatly. It will also lower the chances of the stunt falling, preventing injuries. Remember: Never stunt without a coach present!
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Do you have what it takes to have the perfect toe touch? Do you want to improve your jumps and flexibility? Do you want to impress the judges during tryouts? Then this article is for you!
Having a clean and presentable jump is an essential part of cheerleading. You want the entire crowd to look at you and think wow, she has an awesome jump! Here are some crucial tips to perfecting your jumps and improving your flexibility:
1. Stretch Everyday! Go through a stretching routine that you have learned either at your squads practice or at a dance class. If your a beginner than their are countless stretches displayed all over the internet. I recommend stretching for at least 20 minutes a day, doing the same routine so as not to leave anything out.
2. Leg lifts, leg lifts, leg lifts! If you are a veteran cheerleader, than you know exactly what I am talking about. For the newbies: sit in a straddle on the floor as widely as possible. Rotate your feet so that your toes point behind you. Lift your right leg up off the ground using your heel and stomach muscles. Repeat 15 times not allowing your foot to touch the ground. Do the same for your left leg and then both legs. Repeat this everyday!
3. V-Ups! V-ups not only work your ab muscles but they also strengthen your core, and most importantly your legs! Lay flat on the ground with your legs and feet together and your arms above your ears. Crunching up have your arms and legs meet in the middle, imagine fold in half like a taco. Once you hit the middle you want your arms in a T position and your legs in a straddle or "V" position. Repeat 20 times not allowing your arms or feet to touch the ground. Do this everyday!
4. Clean and Proper Positioning! No matter how high your jump is, it is essential to have the proper form in a jump. For the sake of this article and because it is the most used jump, we will use the toe touch as an example. The best way to do a toe touch is to counts. For the newbies this is an 8-count. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and repeat. You usually count the counts to a beat in your head. Clap 1 hold 2, high V 3 hold 4, Circle your arms from the high V down crossing at your knees on 5, Jump on 6, land with your feet together, arms straight by your sides with fists, knees bent on 7 hold 8, and for an added effect hit hands on hips on 1.
Now that we have covered the basics of the counts for the jump, let's move on to how it should look. Each time you hit a position you want it to be on that exact count. Don't move before the count and don't move on the holds. You want your arm positions to be straight and sharp using all of your energy and muscles. As you hit the jump on 6, you want your arms to hit a T on 6 as well (for the toe touch). Do not bring your arms to your legs, let your legs come up to your arms! This is extremely important and a misconception. A lot of cheerleaders think that if they reach for their toes the jump is higher. Not true! All this does is make you feel as though it is higher when in actuality it is the same. Chest should be up and your back should be straight at all times. Don't bend over towards your toes. Last but not least, SMILE!
Doing these stretches, muscle strengthening, and practicing your jumps everyday will not only make you more confident in your jumps, but also improve your jumps tremendously!
Amy Johnsen kidscheeranddance.com