Just Because Cheerleading Is Hard Doesn’t Mean It’s a Sport.
The title alone sent me on an angry reading spree o.O
No really, I was a competition cheerleader for a season in high school. I cheered for the Minnesota All Stars. This wasn’t high school cheerleading, this was competition cheerleading. I to would go to the pep rallies at school (when forced to) and occasionally sat through an Eden Prairie Eagles game and often thought to myself. “Look at these bubble headed idiots, I too could shout ‘Go Team Go’ while jumping around and doing cartwheels. But would I? Nope! But it was after watching the National Cheer Championships on ESPN that opened my eyes to a new love of mine…Competition Cheerleading.
Competition cheerleading combined 3 of my favorite things into one. When I was younger I did gymnastics and dance. Competition cheerleading had both of those, add an excuse to be loud and obnoxious and I was pretty much sold. (Still wasn’t so keen on having to wear spanx under a teeny tiny skirt) But watching 3 girls, all smaller than me, throw another girl high up in the air, watch her somersault while plummeting safely back into her bases arms was an absolute thrill. These girls, these young women, were athletes, ARE athletes.
I was overwhelmed with joy when Gatorade campaigned with So You Think You Can Dance to recognize dance as a sport. And we all know (especially since the olympics are on) that gymnastics is deemed a sport. So how, please tell me how, when you mix the two of these together and add gravity defying tricks most likely borrowed from an ancient circus people still don’t see the pure athletic talent that goes into the SPORT of Competition Cheerleading.
And just for arguments sake, here’s a list of common injuries suffered by cheerleaders.
I should remember to actually finish my point before posting (oops) I do like that the Jezebel article entails what competition cheerleading would have to do to be legally considered a sport.
1) Have a clearly defined season (It sure as heck seems like the teams in my area have a clear defined season)
2) Getting more organized (This one makes a lot of sense. Just because the teams up here in Minnesota have clear defined seasons, doesn’t mean other states are following suit)
3) This last one kills me “Existing as a primarily competitive act rather than a warm up act” seriously, have they never watched the National Cheerleading Competitions on ESPN. They are the act, this is not a drill or a warm up.
So to me…it sounds like the Second Circuit Court ruling is what its always been, a lame excuse to not give these women the proper title of athlete that they deserve. (And please don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of women that give cheerleader a bad name, I’m talking about the ones that train like athletes, have the strength and determination that athletes do, and the one’s that try to be a positive role model on the youth of today, i.e. Minnesota Vikings cheerleaders volunteering and helping out in our community)
Thanks again for listening to my rant, please leave a comment or response below *muah*