Category Archives: Cheer

Now Offering Lessons at the Sports Academy in Victor, NY

I am now offering a few openings on my lesson scheduling page for cheerleaders/tumblers at the Sports Academy located ay the Phoenix Mills Plaza in Victor, NY. Time is EXTREMELY limited! So if you are interested, book ASAP!

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Q&A: Wobbly Single-Leg Stunts

I can never seem to get myself to sit down and write on a schedule. But I often find myself writing long replies to questions asked on the Fierceboad or sent by email. Most of those reply’s length rival those of my actual posts. So I decided I will share some of those questions/answers on here.

Question : I have a level 2 youth team and their one leg stunts have become weak and wobbly. Does anyone have any ideas to help strengthen this area?

Answer: That’s a pretty general question. It’s like going to the doctors and simply saying “I’m sick.” He’s going to need know symptoms, and details to be able to properly diagnose/treat you.

Likewise, on the forum, we will need to know a little more about those “shaky stunts” to be able to give accurate advise on how to fix them. A video would probably be best. But recording and posting videos can be a bit of a gray area legally, unless you have a release from all parents of the athletes involved. So I wouldn’t recommend it.

A few general suggestions:

-Look at the grip and building technique of the bases.

-Watch for any muscle compensations in the bases when putting up the stunt. For example, holding the stunt in front of their bodies, instead of overhead, excessive arching of the back, or knees turning in or out when holding the stunt. Any of these could indicate your bases need to get stronger to be able to control the stunt.

-Make sure the flyer has correct body positioning when loading and building the stunt.

-Look to see if the flyer has the ability to balance and stabilize their body throughout the stunt. Can your flyer do the skills balanced on a stable surface such as the floor?

-Make sure that your flyer has proper flexibility and strength to be able to hit each body position. Poor flexibility can cause altered movements in the air. An example of this would be poor hamstring flexibility, which would cause your flyer to drop their chest when performing a single leg heel stretch. Another would be inflexible/over-active hip-flexors which could cause the flyer to excessively arch in their their back in a scorpion.

Anyways, these are just a few general things to look for when diagnosing stunting issues. Like I said before, to be able to definitively tell you how to fix your teams stunts, I would need more information.

Hope this helps,
Coach Matt
Full-Out: Cheer and Fitness

 

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The Importance of Fitness and Safety in Cheerleading

By: Carolyn Fallon
Check out more work by Carolyn by visiting her blog at http://fullonfit.blogspot.com/!

Anyone who thinks cheerleading is easy has obviously not tried it. Today’s cheerleading routines are extremely demanding and athletic, requiring amazing amounts of strength, balance, flexibility, and endurance. Training for cheerleading should always include some form of aerobics and strength training. Also, safety is a constant concern. If you are deficient in any area, you are putting yourself and others at risk.

It seems that every year cheerleading routines become more and more complex, more athletic, and more risky. There are moves underway now to improve safety for cheerleading routines and related activities. For now, be sure to train mindfully to avoid any hazards.

Actions Cheerleaders Can Take To Prevent Injuries:

Resistance Training:

Some type of resistance training will keep your weight under control and give you the strength to perform more advanced routines. You will also want to be sure that you always include a good stretching and warm-up session before your workouts, which will help prevent injury, both major and small.

Yoga:

Yoga is a great exercise for cheerleaders because it is low impact in nature while also providing a good strenuous workout. Due to the typical benefits of yoga being increased strength, flexibility, and balance, orthopedic surgeon Dr. Glen Axelrod states that many professional teams are integrating yoga into their regular training sessions. Additionally, yoga is known to also increase one’s core strength and focus, as well as decrease emotional states of stress and anxiety.

Proper Training:

It is always important to be training properly, in proper conditions, with proper training, observed by certified coaches. Be sure that you perform your stunts on mats to provide cushioning for falls. You will also want to maintain an atmosphere that allows you to focus. A certified and trained coach should be on hand at all times to ensure that safety is always being monitored and heeded.

Diet:

In addition to your training and exercise regimen, maintaining a diet is vitally important. For one thing, you will need to provide enough healthy fuel to provide energy for your routines and exercise. You will also want to eat the right kinds of foods so that you maintain lean muscle mass, while avoiding fatty foods that don’t provide any nutritional value.

Be sure that you are eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. The fruits will ensure that you are getting plenty of carbohydrates to fuel your workouts. Try to avoid getting sugar in the form of sodas and sugared drinks. These types of drinks tend to cause rapid increases in blood sugar. This can lead to weight gain.

Getting your carbs in the form of fruit also ensures that you are getting plenty of fiber in your diet. Fiber helps you keep from putting on weight in the form of fat. The reason fiber helps prevent weight gain is that it takes longer for your body to digest. You will also need to make sure you getting enough lean protein. Protein is the building block for muscle. Avoid meats like red meat and beef. They tend to have adequate protein but at a cost. They too often have high levels of unhealthy fat. This fat can clog your veins and prevent your heart from working at full capacity.

Some good choices for lean protein are turkey, skinless chicken, and most fish. Also, many nuts have good amounts of protein combined with good fiber. Walnuts, pecans, cashews, and sunflower seeds are good choices, and are an easy snack to keep with you for when you are hungry but it’s not meal-time yet. They also tend to be high in heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. One thing to be careful of, however, is high levels of salt, which can be found on certain types of nuts, such as peanuts.

Carolyn is a 20-something year old with a passion for life, fitness and overall well-being. She is an avid cycler, golfer and has known to bust some serious mves on the dance floor. Check out Carolyn’s blog at http://fullonfit.blogspot.com/!

Very interesting blog post how to max out your tumbling score sheets!

Cheerleading Daily

One of the biggest parent melt-downs I ever encountered as an all star coach/director was the year we started the season with absolutely no standing tumbling in our routine.  Okay, before you write me off as complete moron for making such an oversight, give me a second to explain.  First, I was not actively involved in the coaching of this particular team in the program (although that changed after the first competition).  Second, we hired outside choreographers who actually did put standing tumbling in the routine and the coach subsequently took it out of the routine.  So in my defense, I was as surprised as the judges when the team did not throw any standing tumbling. 

The score sheet at our first competition had 2 parts for the tumbling score; 10 points for running tumbling and 10 points for standing tumbling.  This team had quite a mix of tumbling.  There were probably around…

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Why practice DOESN’T ALWAYS make perfect!

Throughout my life I have heard the expression “practice makes perfect” repeated by coaches, teachers, and parents alike. Although the advice was given with good intentions, their message could be interoperated as “repeat something enough times and you will become better at it.” That message is at best inaccurate, and at worst is Albert Einstein’s very definition of INSANITY! For this reason I prefer the phrase Perfect practice makes perfect.” 

Continue reading Why practice DOESN’T ALWAYS make perfect!