Training cheerleaders to be fit and healthy

I have worked as a cheerleading coach for the past eighteen years.

I own and operate a successful all-star gym.

My staff and I train kids from ages three to eighteen. We work with several teams at each age level and they include beginners, intermediate and advanced levels. Our teams travel throughout the country to compete. This is not the cheerleading many people picture. We don’t occupy the sidelines of a football game and fire up the crowd. Competitive cheer is an especially physically strenuous sport. The athletes perform complicated stunts, tumbling, dance and jumps. They are required to be extremely strong, flexible, coordinated and fit. The demands of a two-and-a-half minute routine rely on a great deal of stamina. Competitive cheer has proven to be one of the most dangerous sports. Injuries are all too frequent and can be devastating. I need to take every precaution to ensure that the kids are prepared in every possible way. I teach them proper techniques targeted toward their safety. My staff and I drill the more complex maneuvers and skills so that each cheerleader is aware of their role and executes it flawlessly. There is a lot of physical training necessary. During our practices, I lead the athletes through running and jumping drills. They lunge and squat. They are required to perform handstands, pushups, pull-ups and abdominal crunches. We include weight lifting, incorporate resistance bands and often jump rope. I make certain that the cheerleaders are conditioned into peak athletes. We include all the muscle groups and vary between cardio and strength training. My staff and I stress the importance of a proper warmup and cooldown, hydration, enough sleep and good nutrition. I try to teach and instill healthy habits that will support their well-being and fitness throughout their lives. My teams often win because my gym focuses on total-body and mental health.


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