These are my daughters, Brittany (who I almost always call Burt) and Shanna. Both girls are competitive cheerleaders on Elite teams with the Vancouver All Stars - which is one of the best all star programs in Canada. The girls started cheering five years ago - Shanna with her high school junior team and Burt on a rec all star team. They have come a long way and have both become pretty good tumblers with roundoff back handsprings back tucks to their credit. Both girls are capable in all positions, be it base, third, front or flyer, although Shanna has gotten too big to be a flyer and Burt is a little too tall. Their cheerleading has given them the opportunity to do a lot of traveling. They have competed at Knotts Berry Farm in California, in Orlando, Florida and this year they go to All Level Worlds in Los Angeles. Both girls have also done a lot of coaching - and Shanna is certified as a Level 3 tumbling, tosses and stunting coach and is just finishing her Canadian Coaches Level 1 course. Of the two of them, Brittany loves coaching way more than Shanna but is too young to do the credentialling. They are not coaching at all this year with their move to the Vancouver club.
Mom has become a big competitive cheerleading fan as well and with my love of scrapping - put together a book for the girls memories. This is it....
Cheering is much different than what most people think. My girls wouldn't have a clue if you put them out on a field to cheer on a team. They learn and practice a 2 1/2 minute routine which is made up of dance, tumbling, stunting and jumps and compete with this routine for an entire year. A cheer squad can be as small as 5 girls or as large as 36. My girls are on all girl squads but there is a senior Co-ed team at their club.
My biggest pet peeve is people not accepting that cheerleaders are athletes! Those kids work really hard and it takes a lot of skill to do the tumbling and the lifting/tossing that they are required to do. I'm a credentialed cheer coach (to Level 4 in all three aspects of cheer - tumbling, tosses and stunting) and I co-coached a senior team for a couple years. These kids are very much athletes.