We have seen cheerleading change dramatically through the years. Gone are the days when the student body voted for the most popular girls to serve on the squad. Gone are the days when the primary concern for the cheerleaders was baking cookies for the boys and serving as dates for the players. Gone, as well, are the days when cheerleaders would defy their own bodies and common sense to climb five human levels high to excite the crowd. Today’s cheerleaders are tremendous, finely tuned athletes who command respect and admiration.

If carried out correctly, cheerleading, in any form, is a mixture of so many physical and psychological components that at times it seems almost indefinable. It is grace, strength, sportsmanship, dance, gymnastics, agility, creativity, acrosport, leadership, showmanship, precision and courage. In my view, it exemplifies what our young people need in their lives and are striving to achieve. The entire process of group dynamics that cheerleading provides is a learning experience that will carry our kids for the rest of their lives. The discipline and opportunity involved in becoming a student leader will allow them the pleasure of developing autonomy and confidence. The physical benefits of training and conditioning properly are immeasurable when it comes to overall fitness and longevity.

Coaching is serving KIDS. We are teaching kids the importance of TEAM, POISE, SPORTSMANSHIP and EXCELLENCE. Cheerleaders can come into their own as athletes without sacrificing the primary goal and privilege of serving as student leaders. We can lead the crowd with a combination of grace and athletic ability. We can be proud of our own competitive accomplishments without losing sight of our academic, school and community responsibilities. As cheerleading coaches, we must fully understand the cause and lead the way effectively with great perseverance for our kids.

I am big on making sure coaches understand they are the ‘Adult in Charge’. When you sign that contract, you are consenting to become a prominent role model for your kids and your community. Your responsibility to lead the way with dignity and integrity goes without saying. It is also an agreement to lead your young athletes in the safest and best way available. Learn all you can, absorb everything around you and remain involved in the growth and respect that cheerleading has earned through the years. Cheerleading coaches are a special breed with a commitment to excellence.


Cheers to the real leaders ~ Cheer Coaches.

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