Not a sport.

I have gotten into this debate multiple times in life, and was reminded of it this evening when eating at Cici’s Pizza and there was a table next to us full of girls and guys who appeared to be on some sort of athletic team together. I could easily guess this much as I had grown up being a member of countless sports teams and with them all being in athletic attire I figured it was a safe to assume that they had just gotten out of practice and decided to all go out to eat together. I did struggle at first though, trying to guess in my mind what kind of team they were on. They were much too old to be in some sort of little kid’s coed league (soccer, baseball, etc) where the boys and girls play with and against one another, so my next thought was track. Track was “my sport” in high school and I just didn’t get the track vibe from this group.

I feel you can usually sense athletes of the same sport that you spent the most time competing in without anything to go off of other than gut instinct.  Bryan would recognize soccer players, my sister would recognize basketball players and I would recognize it if these people were the members of a track team. I didn’t and I was right. It wasn’t long before a few of the girls had stood up and were walking through a cheer move/routine/sequence/thing with counts of “one, two, three, four, five, six, seeeven, eight.” This became annoying in a big, fat hurry. This annoyance quickly reminded me of the countless debates that I mentioned above.

Cheerleading. is. not. a. sport.

(NB: Before I continue I would like it to be noted that my spell check doesn’t even recognize “cheerleading” as a word, which I think is a good sign for this post.)

Whenever I have encountered these discussions over whether or not cheerleading should be considered a sport the opponents primary argument has been that cheerleading requires athletic skill and is a competition. For those of you that don’t know, it is indeed true that there are cheerleading competitions. So before I dive into my three main points for my side of the argument I would like it to be known that I recognize that it requires athletic skill and yes there are competitions held to see which group is best at those skills. However I would like it also to be recognized that the children’s game of ‘tag’ requires athletic skill and is in itself a competition, yet is not a sport.

My first of three main points is something that I have already alluded to, which is that cheerleading has coed competition. There are no other sports where this element exists on serious levels of competition. Of course little kid leagues and your local amateur softball leagues are all coed. There are no high school, collegiate, semi-pro, or professional leagues that are primarily coed, and anytime it has been attempted it was without success. (See: Michelle Wie) Even sports, like track, that have one team compiled of both men and women are technically divided into two separate teams when it comes to the team scoring aspect of the competitions and are also obviously separated for the individual competitions for the different events as well. Thus, the fact that in cheerleading competitions both males and females compete alongside one another as one team, one unit and against other groups that are also comprised the same way is one clear distinction separating it from all actual sports.

The second of my three main points is even more substantial than the first. Cheerleading quite simply has no professional league of any sort. There is no semi-pro league, no double-A or triple-A equivalent, or farm league or minor league equivalent at all. The only professional cheerleaders you hear of are typically the ones for NFL and NBA teams (like the Laker Girls or my Cheerleader of the Year for the 2009 NFL season – pictured below) and even cheerleaders themselves will admit that those aren’t actual cheerleaders, they are more-so dance teams, and either way that’s not the aspect of cheerleading that this discussion is about. The cheerleaders you goggle at during the timeouts at those NFL and NBA games do not compete. Even sports like schleuderball have semi-pro leagues in Germany. I don’t know of ANY cheerleading organization that could even be debated as a professional league of any sort.

Erica, Weller's 2009 NFL Cheerleader of the Year

Finally, the most essential part for my trio of points. Point blank, the NCAA does not recognize cheerleading or dance teams as a sport. I know this because the University of Tennessee has a total of 23 National Championships. Eight in women’s basketball, six in football, four in Men’s Track & Field, three in Women’s Track & Field, and Men’s Cross Country and Men’s Swimming and Diving have one each. That totals 23. The problem is that the Cheerleading team has four National Championships that I know of (possibly more) and the dance team has three that I know of (probably more) which would give Tennessee at least a total of 28 National Championships. The NCAA, however, only recognizes the Championships that have come in real sports.

If a sport has men and women competing with and against each other, doesn’t have some level of professional league, and isn’t recognized by the NCAA when totaling a school’s National Championships then it’s certainly not a sport. Something would need to have at least one of those three qualifications before I would even begin thinking about considering it as a sport.

If anyone has any disagreements or qualms with this post I will be more than happy to discuss this further with you in the comment section below.  The debate will commence when you leave a comment making your point to which I will respond, then just make sure you come back to read that comment and we will continue from there. I look forward to it.

83 Responses

  1. *love*

    You’ll get some argument from certain family members of ours…. however!

    • Haha, I’m curious as to which family members these are.

  2. If it weren’t for sports, there would be no cheerleading. It’s just some pageantry to spice up timeouts or between plays.

    • Well that’s something I didn’t even get into in the post. They are cheerleaders. Cheer. Leaders. They exist to lead cheers. They exist to conduct the crowd when the crowd is cheering for the sport that the are in attendance to watch.

  3. I agree it is not a “sport”. But it does take some athletic ability and coordination and not everyone can do it. There are many different types of teams besides “sports” teams. But you are right, I don’t think cheerleading can be called a sport.

    • I agree. It takes a lot of skill, but so does prison ball (a game we played during gym class in grade school… not real sure if everyone played that game or just the school I went to) and no one is about to consider a children’s game like that as a sport. But yes, it does take athletic ability, practice and coordination, but it’s not a sport. That’s what gymnastics is for.

  4. I agree on all counts except where you cite men and women competing against each other. That’s just illogical and male chauvinism. What does gender have to do with it being a sport or not?

    If the NBA allowed someone like Candace Parker to enter the league, would it all of a sudden not become a sport?

    I’m not saying that coed leagues are a good idea necessarily, and I’m not saying that there aren’t inherent differences in the male and female physique that make it difficult if not impossible to compete in a sport against each other. All I’m saying is that it takes a huge leap to say “men + women = not a sport.”

    • No, you’re misunderstanding what I’m trying to say with that point. I’m not saying that all men are better than all women at everything. Michelle Wie would annihilate me at golf. Candace Parker would beat me mercilessly in any sort of basketball competition. Mia Hamm would beat me in soccer blindfolded. Your local junior high’s girl’s tennis team could probably beat me at tennis. And that list can go on and on. So I’m not saying that if a woman is capable of competing with men, that she shouldn’t be given a shot (ie: Michelle Wie) but when has that worked out?

      Candace Parker is great. I love watching her play and she is a phenomenal athlete but she wouldn’t stand a chance in the NBA. I’m not saying it isn’t a sport because women can’t or shouldn’t be allowed to compete against men. I’m saying it’s because I can’t think of any other sports where that takes place.

      I said “There are no high school, collegiate, semi-pro, or professional leagues that are primarily coed” the key word there being “primarily” because those outlying circumstances certainly exist. That doesn’t rule those out as sports.

      I’m just trying to say that if you have an alien who knows nothing about our planet and tell them “birds have wings” and nothing else, then they will be able to look at a dog, see that there are no wings and know that it’s not a bird. That’s the parallel to what I’m trying to say. “There are no high school, collegiate, semi-pro, or professional leagues that are primarily coed” Thus when there is something like cheerleading, where it is coed competition it’s hard for it to be considered among the group of activities that are sports when there is such a glaring difference. Just like it’s hard for a dog to be confused with a bird when there is a glaring difference.

    • I’m not misunderstanding you at all. “Being played by only one gender” is not in the definition of a sport. Neither is “played by both women and men” a disqualification. Gender has ZERO to do with whether something is a sport or not.

    • Hmmmm… see, for me it does. I’m not saying that there can’t be a sport where men and women compete on the same level, I’m simply saying that I don’t know of any. Thus, it’s just one more thing that is a distinction between cheerleading and actual sports.

      If they introduced a new event in track where it was a relay with two men and two women or something and it was widely implemented into major track events, then I wouldn’t rule it out as a sport (or I guess in this case, as part of a sport) just because men and women are competing with and against each other. But with cheerleading it’s the coed part on top of all the other reasons I have – primarily the other two that I mentioned in the post.

      With the track example it would be put into place for professional and/or NCAA meets, so if coed competition is the lone standing reason then I’m on your side. That alone, by no means, rules out something as a sport. However when it is compounded with other reasons (like cheerleading) I think it is definitely worth noting in the argument over whether or not something is a sport.

      I’m not trying to make it about gender or men being better than women. If that were the case I would say that women’s basketball, women’s tennis, women’s track, women’s swimming, etc are all not sports. That’s not what I’m saying though. I’m saying that it is a difference that cheerleading has from all other major sports. Just like the difference that it doesn’t have any sort of pro league and the difference that it’s not recognized by the NCAA. It’s just a difference.

    • I see what you’re saying, I just don’t see how it follows.

      The grinch is mean. The grinch is green. All mean people are green. WRONG.

    • Yeah, that makes sense. I just don’t feel like I’m making it that much of a blanket statement.

    • You must agree in principle before you disagree and that’s not happening here.

      I think you’re both right. How’s that for a cop out?

    • Haha well done, Bryan. I want the kristen commenter to come back.

  5. Hmmmmm…. after ruminating on Oskie’s post I’m inclined to agree: Men + Women is rather sporting wouldn’t you say?

    • Read what I said above. You of all people should know, that growing up with who my sister was and having her beat me at everything from basketball to games called “Libby Wins” would have been enough for me to recognize that women can keep up with men… just not at the highest levels of competition.

  6. 1st of all, the NCAA does as of recently recognize competitive cheerleading as a NCAA sport! This is not the cheerleading you see at games but the cheerleading you see on ESPN and ESPNU.
    This argument will be around as long as cheerleading is around, but that is fine because those of us that coach or care about cheerleading at all know that each year that goes by the level of skill preformed by these athletes reaches new levels…. cheerleaders with stronger tumbling skills that olympic gymnasts!

    The state that i coach high school cheerleading recognizes competitive cheerleading as a SPORT. The Football and Basketball coaches are amazed by the athletes I have on my team.

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion.. but get your facts straight before stating otherwise!

    • Kristen, thanks for the comment. I definitely see what you’re saying. Yes, I recognize that the type of cheerleading that some consider as a sport is not the cheerleading that is going on along the sidelines of games, but the routines that are seen on ESPN, like you mentioned.

      And I also recognize that gymnastics is a sport, and that cheerleading uses similar skills, I wouldn’t say “stronger tumbling skills than olympic gymansts” but that’s neither here nor there.

      Finally, I want proof that the NCAA recognizes cheerleading as a sport, because they don’t. Flat out, it’s a fact, the NCAA does NOT recognize Cheer and Dance National Championships when add up a school’s totals for championships.

      If you don’t believe me, here is a list of sports that the NCAA does recognize:

  7. Here we go again..I have a 7 hear old in all star cheer. She works tumbling 3 nights a week, has private coaching lessons, and currently does front and back handsprings in multiple tumbling passes. She has the agility to stand on one leg with the other leg pulled straight back up to her head (scorpion). She competes on an all girl team and has won many championships. She currently is getting quite the 6 pack. Hey, how about trying jumping straight into the air as high as you can and doing a toe touch? My son who plays football, baseball and basketball is amazed at the strength it takes to do what she does. She does not cheer on the sidelines. She is a younger version of what you do see on ESPN, etc. Honestly, were you out of things to blog about and thought this would be a good topic to get everyone going? I currently blog about All-Star Cheer…which is not a bunch of girls entertaining you from the sidelines…it is constant travel competing against other team that train just as hard as she does. Is she Olypmic? Well NO. Does she have better skills than your normal school cheerleader, YES, All-Star is an up and coming sport. Do some research dear…and please stop beating this dead dog. You might as well posted about changing republicans to democrats. Those of us that coach/train/ and see our children work their bodies to the limit KNOW it is a sport. Those parents that have school cheerleaders know it is NOT a sport. I was trained at a top notch gymnastics facility that competed and then taught at one When I watch her team, I see no difference. Matter of fact, I thank god I wasn’t having to stand on one girl’s arms with my foot contorted up to my head on top of the gymnastics training I received. BTW, I am the co-owner of an All-Star Cher parents site…so we can debate this back and forth..with documents and all if you would like.

    • Excuse me for the typo at the end..I meant CHEER. I worked my regular job and then went to work at the gym where I watched 5 year olds throw back handsprings. I am about to fall asleep. FYI…Merriman -Webster dictionary does define cheerleading as a real word. If you dig deep enough you will see the the NCAA has all ready gotten involved with setting safety rules. It is an evolving sport. It is just a matter of time. Want to bet? ;)

    • Lisann, I truly do appreciate the comment! However next time you would be better served to actually read through my entire post and the other comments before leaving your own comment. That, however, is neither here nor there.

      If you would have read this page thoroughly, you would know that I have already said cheerleading takes a great deal of athletic ability, coordination, and balance. I went to Nationals in Track & Field as a hurdler, so I have quite a bit of experience in those three areas myself.

      To make sure I don’t miss anything, I will respond to your comment point-by-point.

      You said “I have a 7 hear old in all star cheer. She works tumbling 3 nights a week, has private coaching lessons, and currently does front and back handsprings in multiple tumbling passes.” Practicing regularly and having a personal coach does NOT make something a sport. There are countless activities that involve both practice and a personal coach that are even further away from being a sport than cheerleading is.

      “She has the agility to stand on one leg…” that’s great. Just because an activity requires athleticism doesn’t mean it’s a sport either. Again, childeren’s games like tag, prison ball, hide-and-go-seek, among many others all require athleticism and they are most definitely not sports.

      “She competes on an all girl team and has won many championships” There are many different types of teams, not just sports teams (as was pointed out in an earlier comment) so just because she is on a team doesn’t mean cheerleading is a sport, and winning championships doesn’t either. I’m sure you can win championships in everything from bingo to chess tournaments. Are those sports? No.

      “She currently is getting quite the 6 pack.” Great. Congrats. I have a six-pack right now, and I’m not currently involved in any sports.

      “Hey, how about trying jumping straight into the air as high as you can and doing a toe touch? My son who plays football, baseball and basketball is amazed at the strength it takes to do what she does.” If you give me a few solid hours of training I’d put money on it that I could perform the perfect toe touch. I’m sure your son could too. I’m sure my sister could as well. That doesn’t make it a sport. That simply means your daughter has worked to develop a certain set of skills that use a certain set of muscles that your son doesn’t use as much, which is why he “is amazed the strength it takes to do what she does.”

      “She does not cheer on the sidelines. She is a younger version of what you do see on ESPN, etc. Honestly, were you out of things to blog about and thought this would be a good topic to get everyone going? I currently blog about All-Star Cheer…which is not a bunch of girls entertaining you from the sidelines…it is constant travel competing against other team that train just as hard as she does.” Did I not say IN THE POST that I wasn’t talking about the cheering on the sidelines, but the routines at cheer competitions? Yes I did. I’ve been so more cheer competitions than I care to admit because my ex-girlfriend was/is a cheerleader. So I know what goes on at the competitions and which aspect of cheerleading we’re talking about. Correct me if I’m wrong, but this is what I’ve been talking about all along:

      “Is she Olypmic? Well NO.” And do you know why? Because cheerleading ISN’T IN THE OLYMPICS! Gymnastics is. Gymnastics is a sport. Cheerleading is not.

      “Does she have better skills than your normal school cheerleader, YES” What school are you talking about? Junior High? High School? College?

      “All-Star is an up and coming sport. Do some research dear.” All-Star is an up and coming sport? Really? You’re not even saying cheerleading, but some specific organization of cheerleading? I don’t care if it’s All-Star, UCA, UDA, or any other organization. It’s not an up and coming sport because it’s not a SPORT. Guess what a few years ago poker was considered up and coming and it still regularly shown on ESPN. Is it a sport? NO. And please tell me what research you’ve provided to this debate. All you’ve done is talk about cheerleading itself. I’ve compared it to real sports, and pointed out the differences that distinguish it enough for it not to be categorized as one itself.

      “please stop beating this dead dog. You might as well posted about changing republicans to democrats.” Isn’t that saying ‘beating a dead horse’? Who are you? Michael Vick? And no, this is a sports blog, not a political blog, so it wouldn’t have made any sense for me to post about changing people’s political views. Though thank you for essentially pointing out that you’re so closed-minded that you’re not even willing to hear my side of the argument.

      “Those of us that coach/train/ and see our children work their bodies to the limit KNOW it is a sport. Those parents that have school cheerleaders know it is NOT a sport.” I don’t even know what point you’re making here. If someone is representing their school when they cheer then they aren’t a real cheerleader, or that then it’s not a sport? Also, if you want to talk about working bodies to the limit don’t mention it in reference to a seven year old cheerleader. Seven year olds don’t work their bodies to the limit, people like this work their bodies to the limit:

      “I was trained at a top notch gymnastics facility that competed and then taught at one When I watch her team, I see no difference. Matter of fact, I thank god I wasn’t having to stand on one girl’s arms with my foot contorted up to my head on top of the gymnastics training I received.” I’ve already said gymnastics is a sport. Cheerleading is not. Just because they have to do it while standing on another’s girl’s arm, thus making it more dangerous doesn’t make it any more of a sport. Russian Roulette is pretty dangerous. it’s not a sport.

      “BTW, I am the co-owner of an All-Star Che(e)r parents site…so we can debate this back and forth..with documents and all if you would like.” I would love to check out your website. You didn’t proved the url for it when you commented or I’d have already looked at it. As for these “documents” you speak of, I’m not even sure what you’re getting at. Do you have some top secret document that the NCAA has signed off on saying that they’re making cheerleading an official sport? If so, I’d love to see that as well.

      “FYI…Merriman -Webster dictionary does define cheerleading as a real word.” I didn’t say it wasn’t a word. I just found it comical that when I typed it for this post the red line underneath it appeared indicating a misspelled word. I double and triple checked my spelling and realized that it was just comical and timely coincidence.

      “If you dig deep enough you will see the the NCAA has all ready gotten involved with setting safety rules. It is an evolving sport. It is just a matter of time. Want to bet?” I don’t doubt the NCAA has their hand in the pot for the safety regulations. I doubt that is any indication that they will soon be including it to their list of official NCAA sports. It’s probably just to cover their own hides in case of an accident. As for it being an evolving sport, I disagree, but only because it’s not a sport. I’m sure that the stunts, tricks, jumps, tucks, and whatever else is all evolving and getting more difficult, but again that doesn’t make it a sport. And it’s just a matter of time until what? Before I bet on something I like to be clear as to what the conditions are.

  8. Just a question for you… If you had something better to talk about why on earth are you posting this to my teams facebook page??? I have no isssues with blogging and having our oponions about anything and everything. But Seriously?? are you looking for a fight?

    • It’s the basics of marketing and advertising. Put it where the target audience will see it. And I’m not targeting people that already agree with me.

  9. When it comes down to it the cheerleaders, coaches and parents of cheerleaders could really a %@(* what the argument is about cheerleading being a “sport” It will not take away any talent or success from a team… or turn kids away from the sport. One thing it will do is fire people up and lead them to defend it. But honestly, we could sit here and start a discussion about golf, bowling, curling, some of the track and field events… like seriously??
    yeah, they all require the same things. Practice, ability, agility but so does baseball and football… but my 80 year old Papa can still play 18 holes of golf and I don’t think he will be putting on his old football pads from when he played in college and taking hits any time soon.

    As for what i said before… The NCAA has taken action and partnered with Varsity brands (they are the leading cheerleading competition company and run the college, high school and all star national championships) to set safety rules and guidelines as well as make a plan of action for Competitive cheerleading to become a NCAA sport. This will happen in the next 1 to 2 years max. There are already a number of schools that recognize cheerleading as a Varsity Level sport, University of Maryland was the first Division 1-A school to do this. Becoming a Varsity level sport gives the cheerleaders all of the same treatment as any other NCAA sport at the given school… They recuit and give full and partial scholarships just like all other sports…. so please tell me what the next step is to you??
    All of those national titles that “don’t count’ will count before you know it!

    • “When it comes down to it the cheerleaders, coaches and parents of cheerleaders could really a %@(* what the argument is about cheerleading being a “sport””


      “It will not take away any talent or success from a team… or turn kids away from the sport. One thing it will do is fire people up and lead them to defend it.”

      I didn’t say it took away from the talent of success. And good, use it as motivation. I like to think that I’m helping them reach their goals.

      “But honestly, we could sit here and start a discussion about golf, bowling, curling, some of the track and field events… like seriously??”

      What track event makes you say “like seriously??” because if that’s what you’re implying then maybe you’re the one that needs to do research before getting into this argument. This statement wouldn’t have concerned me so much, but the double-question mark really drove the point home.

      “yeah, they all require the same things. Practice, ability, agility but so does baseball and football… but my 80 year old Papa can still play 18 holes of golf and I don’t think he will be putting on his old football pads from when he played in college and taking hits any time soon.”

      I don’t even know what point you’re trying to make with that statement. For something to be a sport means that 80 year olds have to be incapable of partaking in the activities? That makes sense.

      As for your entire final paragraph about the NCAA. I want proof. You’re saying that cheerleading will be an official NCAA sport in less than two years? Really? Not a chance. Just because a few division 1-A schools offer cheer scholarships doesn’t mean it’s about to become an official NCAA sport. This simply means that the schools’ in question choose to put some of their money toward cheer scholarships. That has nothing to with the NCAA. It’s on a school-by-school basis.

    • Swing and a miss.|main|dl7|link4|


    check this ;)

    i am cheerleader. i tried many different sports before and no one is that difficult and ?anstrengend? :D than cheerleading :)

    • Hey Elli, thanks for the comment! I’m not challenging how difficult cheerleading is. I don’t doubt that it’s very demanding and takes both dedication and skill, I’m simply saying that those things don’t automatically categorize something as a sport.

  11. Hey Weller! I think you’re doing a great job defending your opinions here with facts and I think you’re doing a great job of doing it respectfully. I’d like to help!

    In high school, I was a dancer. It took a ton of athleticism, coordination, flexibility, and skill. I had a coach. I practiced. I took classes. I did not compete, but a lot of people at my dance club did. I even know people who compete on dancing teams in college and win championships (Moscow Ballet Championship competition clip: This dancer is 14 years old and dances on her tiptoes. From experience, I know ballerinas practice en pointe until their toes bleed. I guarantee she has a six-pack and thighs of steel. Still not a sport.

    I was also in the marching band in high school and college as a color guard member (we danced, tumbled, twirled flags, sabres, and rifles. People break wrists if they do one toss the wrong way). It also took coordination, skill, practice, athleticism, precision, etc etc. We had a coach. We were out on the field for hours and hours per day. Every day. Even during the dog days of summer. I was hard-bodied by the end of the season, and I had the endurance of a mid-distance runner. They show marching competitions on ESPN (DCI championships –> Here’s one from 2008, and it’s worth the 10 minute length:, they hold tryouts and vigorous practices at both the high school and collegiate levels. There are competitions and championships for each level – high school, college, and professional (DCI). Still not a sport. (just ask Bryan!)

    I was a singer too – I had a vocal coach, I sang in everything from choirs to very select madrigal ensembles. We competed. We won state championships at the junior and senior level when I was in high school. Takes skill, practice, and (believe it or not) muscle tone that you have to develop using specific exercises. Can you do what Mariah Carey does? Neither can I. Sport? Nope.

    How about the spelling bee? Takes skills and practice. You have coaches (ask anyone who’s been in a serious bee – they get coached!). There are competitions in every grade level at the local school, district, regional, state, and national levels. They air it on ESPN. Still not a sport.

    I agree with you here. Not everything that takes skill, coordination, athleticism, strength, team membership or coaching is a sport as recognized by the NCAA. That doesn’t demean what anybody does. Goodness, look at what those DCI members, or members of the ballet, or the Mormon Tabernacle Choir do to be the best at their activity. Just because it doesn’t qualify as a “sport” doesn’t mean it’s any less difficult, any less impressive, or any less important. It just falls in a separate category of activity. As soon as people put their egos aside and accept that, the argument dies. Define your own class of activities, folks. Be proud to be different. I certainly am.

  12. Really decent post… I love it. Keep ’em coming… :)

  13. uhh well you are wrong!! cheerleading is legally a sport! it takes very hard work and it is offensive to say it’s not! I am VERY proud to say it will be the 2012 summer olympics!!!!! TAKE THAT!

    • This is not my post so I’ve stayed out of the comments…but this is wrong. Cheerleading won’t be at the 2012 Olympics. If you can provide a link that shows otherwise, I’d gladly admit my error…but I’m confident that I’m not wrong.

    • I would say something, but I am VERY proud to say that Bryan handled the response to this comment nicely… so I will simply dignify myself by responding with… TAKE THAT!



  15. Look, I’m 14 and I started competitive cheerleading when I was 3 years old. When I was 7 I had mini practice on Tuesdays for about two hours then had a hour. After my hour was up I had another practice for about two more hours. Then on Thursdays and Fridays I had practice too. This did not include privates nor did it include tumbling. As I grew up practices got harder and harder. I’ve seen children that are at the gym everyday practicing or tumbling. I have believed since i was young that it’s a sport and I still do. The people that say it isn’t haven’t done it for themselves or watched someone do it on the level that I have. I wish people could understand the hours that goes into practice along with all the mental preperation too. People don’t understand everything you do. The late nights practicing, the driving to different states after school on Friday (cause your parents think you’ve missed to much), the practicing in class, or the literally doing it in your sleep.
    I wish people understood.

    • Look, kid, you’re missing the point. The amount of time practicing and rehearsing and the amount of effort it takes is not an argument for it being a sport. There are countless examples of things in this world that require a great deal of dedication and practice to become successful at, but it doesn’t automatically qualify something as a sport. I HAVE watched people do it on the level that you have. I guarantee you that I’ve watched people on a HIGHER level. I’ve seen collegiate cheer and dance competitions, which is the highest level of cheerleading, because it’s not a sport, thus doesn’t have any level of professional league. It was a nice try, and that was relatively well written for a 14 year old, but you’re off the mark by a mile.

  16. See collegiate cheer competitions are not the highest level. Level 6 is the highest. This is how sport is defined “an athletic activity requiring skill or physical prowess and often of a competitive nature”. I have seen levels of cheer that are very high. And what do you consider a sport. Doctors even say cheerleaders and dancers are in better shape than any other athletes. I very well understand what your saying but you don’t get cheerleading.

    • The doctors that have said that are wrong. The best athletes in the world are decathletes and the ones with the best overall fitness level are swimmers. That’s common knowledge. And the dictionary definition of the word ‘sport’ is irrelevant. Federal judges have ruled on multiple occasions that cheerleading is not a sport. Cheerleading is legally NOT a sport.

    • Judges have also said people were guilty when they were not and they have also let innocent people be sent to prison when they shouldn’t have been. How is the dictionary definition irrelevant? Can you please explain?
      What’s your reasoning for saying it’s not a sport? Is there any particular reason why you care so much if you don’t believe it’s a sport?
      I understand why people fight so much for it to be a sport and the ones that do it believe it’s a sport. But why do people fight so hard to oppose what we believe it is? Why don’t you just let them believe it.
      We let Muslims believe what they want. Christians believe as they wish. Mormons believe as they please. We let Amish live how they want.
      Why can’t y’all let cheerleaders be cheerleaders and be athletes? Why can’t we be treated as equals in the sports world?

    • I’m not asking people to believe that it’s a sport but we accept things everyday that we don’t believe. All I am asking is that they would accept us as athletes.

  17. Yes, judges and juries make mistakes. Everyone does, but that doesn’t change the fact that on several separate occasion judges have ruled against cheerleading being considered a sport.

    As for the dictionary definition being irrelevant, it’s because based on that definition every childhood game should be considered a sport: tag, hide and seek, kick the can, etc. Those are not sports, and considering them sports would water down what it truly means for something to be a sport.

    If somebody paid you a compliment it would make you feel good. If you then found out that they pay that same compliment to almost everyone they meet, it would detract from the true meaning behind that compliment; it would no longer hold any meaning.

    Thus, if we were to consider ALL activities that “require skill or physical prowess” and are “of a competitive nature” to be sports, it would no longer hold any meaning to call something a sport.

    And this is why I care so much for it to not be considered a sport. If cheerleading were to be considered a sport it would make that term less meaningful for the activities that should actually be considered sports.

    As for your parallel with religion, it’s not a very good one. Countless wars have been fought because of religious beliefs.

  18. I accept that YOU believe cheerleaders are athletes, but I don’t actually accept cheerleaders as athletes…

  19. Then may I ask what a athlete is to you. a person who is trained or skilled in exercises, sports, or games requiring physical strength, agility, or stamina. This is the definition of an athlete. I would like to understand what keeps it from being a sport or what keeps us from being athletes.

    The part about religions was to show that we accept things and let them be what they want even if we don’t believe as they do.

    • Cheerleaders can be athletes… if they play real sports, not just cheerleading. Gymnastics is a sport, and thus, gymnasts are athletes. Cheerleading is not a sport, thus, chearleaders are not athletes… You can be athletic without being an athlete, just like you can be philosophical without being a philosopher.

      The very title of ‘cheerleader’ explains why it isn’t a sport. Cheerleaders are there to lead cheers, specifically to lead the fans in cheering for a sporting event that is going on. They are an accessory to the actual sport taking place, a side show, a prop. When there are cheerleading competitions, it’s no longer cheerleading, it’s pointless shouting.

      If the cheerleading community were smart about it, and wanted to get it recognized as a real sport, they would be lobbying to the F.I.G. (Fédération Internationale de Gymnastique). Drop the shouting and use of signs and try to make it a team floor routine in gymnastics. An event in gymnastics would be acceptable… Cheerleading becoming a sport, in and of itself, is laughable. The only reason that would happen would be because people would be so fed up with having to hear people complaining about it and finally caving… but my question for you is, would you really want it like that? That would be like getting a compliment but only after fishing for it… asking somebody if they like your new haircut and when they tell you ‘no’ you just ask again a few minute later and they still tell you ‘no’ and so on and so on, until finally they just get tired of you asking so they say ‘yes’ so you’ll leave them alone. Does that compliment actually make you feel good about yourself? No. Does it mean the person actually likes your haircut? No… so if cheerleading becomes a sport after so many failed attempts with the NCAA, legal system, and everyone else under the sun, would it mean it’s a sport or just that everyone was tired of the whining?

  20. I understand what you are saying and no I would not like it like that.

    The thing is on collegiate levels for UCA you do scream and yell but for NCA you don’t. For competitve cheer you don’t either. Well actually there is a small portion that takes place that is about 3 seconds long and it’s over with.

    When I was doing cheer I spent more time practicing and in a gym than the basketball team at my school, my own basketball team, and the baseball team. Also, cheer is all year round, whereas, other sports are done by season and you play and practice for 3 or 4 months and it’s done.

    If you would like to check out my blog and see the videos I have posted then you will see what I am trying to get recongnized as a sport. Not high school cheer or collegiate, but real, true, all-star competitive cheer.

    At one point in time cheerleaders were just the people that stood on sidelines and yelled and screamed and were annoying. School cheerleaders bug me because that’s all they do and that’s what people see. As time has moved on it has become a sport and has turned into more than just yelling. (Not school cheer but competitive) All I’ve ever wanted was for people to see the practices we do and the stunts, jumps, and tumbling we do.

    No matter what happens there will always be people like you that think that how it was when you were in high school is how it is. You won’t believe that things can change into things more than they were at one time. You don’t believe cheer is a sport due to your “experience” but I can assure you I have had more experience in this field than you have.

    Maybe you don’t see what we are fighting is a good cause but the ones who do it and put the hours in understand.

  21. Okay, you say “other sports are done by season and you play and practice for 3 or 4 months and it’s done.”

    That’s in junior high/middle school. And even in junior high I knew a lot of people that focused on one sport year-round. In fact the other writer on this blog (Bryan) is a perfect example of this. He started playing soccer year-round when he was still in elementary school.

    The point is that cheerleading being year-round does nothing to help its case for becoming a sport.

    And I know what all star competitive cheer is. I’ve been to an all star cheer competition. It’s not a sport. I’ve seen all the practices, stunts, jumps, tumbling, and whatever else. The effort, dedication, and difficulty of it has NOTHING to do with it being a sport.

    And how old did you say you were? 14? There isn’t anything in this world that you have more experience in than me. I dated a girl for five years that worked, taught, and competed at an all-star cheer gym. I saw her practices, I went to their competitions, and I supported her in it, but I NEVER considered it a sport, and I guarantee she was doing it at a higher level than you, based solely on the fact that she was in college at the time, and you’re barely a teenager.

    Look, I know you’re very passionate about this, and I have no doubt that you’re dedicated, work hard, and compete at a relatively high level. I’m not trying to discredit any of that. I’m just saying you don’t play a sport… Well, you mentioned that you are (were?) on a basketball team, in which case you play A sport, and it’s basketball. Cheerleading is not a sport.

  22. I also do softball.

    So what is a sport since the definition of it, which is used to define things, is apparently irrelevant to you?

    I understand some people practice a sport all year round but they are not held to anybody’s standards but their own. I have personally never seen a soccer game played in the dead of winter. I said personally and I may be wrong but that’s to my knowledge.

    I have noticed that everyone that says that cheer is not a sport can’t support it. They use what other people say to support it when what those people say is just an opinion if you think about. The judges that have ruled that it isn’t a sport it was THEIR ruling. So can you tell me exactly what keeps it from being a sport.

    The people that fight for it to be a sport give reasons. The practice more than people in some other sports. I know they do more than people that play ping pong. Those aren’t all the reasons I’m just trying to make a point. We always give reasons as to why it is a sport. Why can’t you and the other people give reasons why it isn’t? Saying that a judge rules it that way. Or that the NCAA didn’t vote it to be one isn’t a reason.

    And about your girlfriend or ex-girlfriend or whatever, so she did collegiate that so impressive (sarcasm). I’m not the most talented of have the best skills but I have been around cheer longer than you have. I saw more cheer by the time I was 8 than you did with the girl. When you talk about your track team and stuff that’s what I feel for cheer.

    Another example would be when a football players fall coaches run out and everyone takes a knee. When we fall we get yelled at for dropping her or she gets yelled at for making herself fall. She gets told to get up and keep going; whereas , football players sit out the rest of the game. They wear pads where we are bare skin for the most part.It seems like the part about football is for every sport not just football.

    Oh, and on those earlier comments about the coed part of cheer. I’m still confused on how it keeps it from being a sport

  23. I’m disappointed by this comment. Your writing quality wasn’t up to par. I will do my best to respond to what you said, despite the fact that your thoughts were rather jumbled and unclear.

    Either way, you participate in cheer, basketball, and softball. So you play two sports. It’s like if somebody is in the marching band and also plays soccer and baseball. They play two sports. Cheer isn’t a sport and neither is being the marching band.

    There are some soccer games played in the winter, but there are also indoor soccer leagues, or you can travel to play in warmer climates. Basically any sport can be played year-round if you’re willing to do it. EPL (the English Premiere League), and really all of the European soccer leagues play in the winter.

    Here’s what keeps cheer from being a sport. There are no leagues, there are no stats or rankings, there’s no head to head competition, and it’s not recognized by any official/note-worthy organizations as a sport. It’s just not a sport, it’s a show, all you’re doing is putting on a show. Is theater a sport? No. Even though it takes a ton of practice, dedication and preparation for the show, it doesn’t count as a sport. even in musicals when there is dancing and displays of coordination and body control, it’s still not a sport.

    If the NCAA were to recognize cheerleading as a sport, when would the season be? What would the competitions be like? Have you thought about any of this? Head-to-head competitions wouldn’t work in cheer. If there was a match/meet/game/whatever between Michigan and Ohio State, for example, what would happen? One squad would do their routine and the judges would score it, then the other squad would do their routine, and the judges would score it and then whoever had the higher score would win. It would take 20 minutes. What school or athletic department would pay to send their cheer squad to a 20 minute competition? You would have to pay for the transportation of the cheer squad, plus the coaches, plus the trainers, you would SID people there, and some managers. And that’s a bare minimum. Nobody in their right mind would do that.

    As for cheerleaders practicing “more than people in some other sports”… That’s insane. Just insane. All NCAA and professional level athletes practice, train and/or workout year-round. Are there people on your school’s track team that you practice more than? I’m sure there are, but are there also people on that same track team that practice more than you do with cheerleader? I’m sure there are. The NCAA and professional leagues have rules in place regulating how often and for how long athletes are allowed to practice for, so it’s really just ignorant to say that athletes in some (any) sports practice more than athletes in others. They all practice as much as they are absolutely allowed to.

    I also find it comical that you, as a 14 year old, are so sure you have seen/watched/been around something more than I have, especially because you threw in “by the time I was 8” which is hilarious. Neither of us have anyway of definitively proving who has been around more cheer activities, but for the sake of keeping this debate on point, I will concede this to you. I’m sure you’ve seen more cheer competitions and whatnot. Here’s the issue. I’ve seen more of every other sport on this planet than you have. I know the world of sport. I know how sports feel, and look like. I know the vibe a sport gives off, and I know when I’m watching a sport and when I’m not.

    You also mentioned ping pong (table tennis) as being something you “know” cheerleaders practice more than. Let me just point out that you really need to work on the whole assuming you know something, because you have NO idea how much top table tennis players practice. I don’t either, but I bet it’s a TON. They are insanely good, and serving alone is extremely difficult when doing it within the International Table Tennis Federation’s rules. You have to throw the ball a certain number of inches in the air, you have to strike the ball from behind the white line, the angle of the ball must be directed toward the opposite end of the table, not toward one of the sides, etc, etc… and that’s just SOME of the rules for one small aspect of the game. Top ITTF players can make hundreds of thousands of dollars per year. Let me know when a cheerleader does that.

    And finally, for the part about football players “falling down” and having coaches and trainers run over, you REALLY need to watch more sports. Real sports. The football players don’t just “fall down”… they’re normally getting hit full force by somebody who weight over 200 lbs (at least) so don’t even kind of try to compare those two things. If a football player just fell down because he messed up, he would get yelled at by a coach too. When he tears and ACL, breaks a bone, or gets a concussion, etc that’s when the trainers run onto the field.

    Less than two weeks ago, Dallas Cowboys tight end, Jason Witten, played with a LACERATED SPLEEN. They wear pads because they get hit by other people, not because of falling down. There have been hockey players that have had tooth knocked out, had an unsedated root canal with no anesthesia in the locker room and then went out and played the rest of the game. There are several examples just over the past few years of football players getting spinal injuries that have left them paralyzed.

    Comparing the toughness it takes to play football with cheerleading discredits every arguments have made or will make. That’s insane. Just a couple of weeks ago there was a Boise State cheerleader that got hit by a player as he was diving out of bounds and she got knocked down, and the coach didn’t yell at her, in fact, the girl got up, hobbled over to her coach and the coach put her arm around her to help support her weight, so saying that football players get coddled and stop playing after they fall down while cheerleaders get yelled at for falling down is by far the most uneducated and ignorant thing you’ve said so far during this debate.

    Cheerleading is not a sport, and you’re just proving it by illustrating your lack of knowledge in other areas of real sports. It’s not a sport. Plain and simple. No leagues, no money, no anything. Take your teddy bear and go home and tell yourself whatever you want to help yourself sleep at night, but at the end of the day, when all is said and done, cheerleading is not a sport.

  24. I’m sorry my writing wasn’t up to par for you. I’m also sorry for assuming things I shouldn’t. I’ll try to be better at checking facts.

    If no one recognizes it as a sport than you can’t necessarily have them paid or have a league. I have tried to explain this to my cousin who is just like you. Football, football, football. Watches ESPN more than anything else and knows absolutely nothing about COMPETITIVE CHEER, eventhough, his sister and I have cheered most of our lives.

    Talking about the girl that fell down and her coach coddled her I’ll belive it with some coaches. Me personally would have told her to get back in the stunt and run it again. My coach would have yelled at me and even made the team run for it.

    The part about all the injuries, well, that happens in most sports. This girl had a back spasm and fell from an extension. She couldn’t move and had to be carried. She came back two days later and did a full. I’ve almost broke my back three times. The first time I competed the next day the next one I got back up and did again. The last time, I say back but it was more of my neck, I came down from four to five feet in the air, bit through my lip, and blacked out for a second. I rinsed out my mouth because the coach told me to and did it again and started working on harder skills the same night. A girl broke her wrists twice in one season. She still competed and practice, but she did everything with one hand.

    Why would anything have to change if it became a league? Did football change other than they got regulations and got paid for it, which we already have regulations. The competitions would go like gymnastics. Teams or individuals would compete and get scored then whoever gets the highest score wins. Does it have to be head-to-head to be sport?

    I know the guys don’t just “fall down” I thought you would get the point. They don’t run out everytime but they do quite a bit. Also you say they get hit by guys that weigh 200+ pounds. That’s understandable but they are getting hit by guys that are about the same size as them, plus they have pads to protect them.

    I will admit that I have some idea what it takes to be a football player from watching friends and family do it and having my dad tell about when he was in high school. I have some prior knowledge of football. The only prior knowledge you have of cheer is that your girlfriend/ ex-girlfriend was a collegiate cheerleader. I could care less about collegiate or high school cheer. I care about competitive cheer. Which I thought I had made apperent but you keep bringing up collegiate cheer.
    You most likely, I said most likely so I am assuming but I can be proven wrong, have no prior knowledge in competitive cheer than what you see on TV. The TV shows and UCA competitions aren’t what I want as a sport. I want the cheer at NCA to be a sport. We do everything that people have told me what defines a sport other than be a league or get paid for it. That’s not up to me though.

  25. Okay, I’m just gonna lay some things out for you

    1. You said they get hit by people of similar size. Not true. NFL players range from anywhere around 150 lbs (Brandon Banks) to nearly 400 lbs (Michael Jasper). They aren’t “about the same size” by any standard.

    2. You misunderstood what I had said about my ex. I didn’t care enough to correct you the first time, but since it’s become a focal point of your argument, I’ll go ahead and clarify… She did competitive cheer while she was in college (and still does, as far as I know), she didn’t actually do collegiate cheer. She did both NCA and UCA competitions.

    3. I straight up do not believe you almost broke your back/neck/spine three times. No offense, but I don’t. Pulled, strained, sprained, etc something in your neck/back area? Yes. I believe that 100%… but you should probably go watch Murderball (it’s a documentary on wheelchair rugby) and see what happens when you actually break your spine… Though, to avoid getting sued by your parents or something, I’m going to tell you that you should ask them for permission first because it is rated R and has a lot of adult content.

    4. You really need a better coach. That Boise State cheerleader go blindsided by a guy that was quite literally twice her size and he was running damn near full speed. It’s more than okay for her coach to show her a little sympathy.

    5. If the competitions would be like gymnastics, then why don’t you just do gymnastics?

    6. As for me still bringing up collegiate cheer, it’s because those cheerleaders go to NCA competitions, which is what you’re saying you would want to make a sport. You should know that.

    You’re a sharp kid. You get behind something you believe in and fight for it. I respect that. But you need to learn to accept when you’re wrong. You’re showing all of the tell-tale signs of somebody losing a debate but refusing to recognize it. You’ve presented a lot of good points, but your last two comments have seemed more desperate, rather than sound arguments. I just hope you’re not living in a world like that Dance Moms show, you seem better than that. I’ve seen that show once. It made me lose all hope for humanity.

  26. The NCA part was about competitive cheer not collegiate. I know there is a collegiate competition at NCA but that is not the part of NCA I am talking about. Also, sorry for misunderstanding about your ex. I wasn’t sure exactly if she did collegiate or competitive or what.

    The part about the Boise State cheerleader, you never said that she was blindsided or that he was running ful speed. From what I gathered it was the flyer that was hurt not the base. I know that you didn’t say that it’s just what usually happens and that was what I figured you were talking about.

    The part about my back, the first time my mom was with me and helping me. She said that she thought she had broken my back. The other two times I am just guessing.

    The part about the football players, were those two guys hitting each other. Normally, people are paired with people to guard that are usually about the same size. That’s usually and I don’t know exactly how it is done in football.

    I understand that maybe my last comments have seemed desperate. They have been. I will admit that. I fight for this so hard because it is what I believe. I don’t see why people don’t considerate a sport since it has all of the characteristics of what they describe a ‘real’ sport as. I just wish that sometime I could let people see what I see when I look at cheer. Or that they could understand why I call it a sport. I know I won’t change your mind and you won’t change mine. We will always disagree about this subject unless something drastic changes in your life. I will always disagree with people about this subject. I just hope you know that I will always fight for this to be a sport and that I hope you see why some day.

  27. I have decided to quit arguing this point with you. From the last comment I thought I made it clear but I needed to write something else so I figured I would make it clear.

    I want you to think about something for me. This is hypothetically speaking. If suddenly they decided football or track were not sport and that judges began ruling that it wasn’t a sport wouldn’t you fight for it. If they said that just because you are athletic, it takes hours to train for it, along with dedication and willingness to do it. It takes practicing for hours and the willingness to get hurt for the sport. You know what it takes to be a track runner, I guess that’s what it is called, or a football player but they still rule that it isn’t a sport.

    Wouldn’t you still fight? Wouldn’t you try everything in your power to prove it was a sport? Wouldn’t you say things to prove it was a sport?
    If you wouldn’t then I would think that you don’t have a true passion for the sport.

    I hope you understand what I was trying to get at by writing this comment.

  28. Why don’t you just do gymnastics instead?

  29. Because I am not a gymnast. Gymnast train for bars, beam, vault, and floor. Cheerleaders train on the type of mat that the floor excercise is on but where they just tumble and do some little motions we tumble, jump, stunt, and do motions. We do similar tumbling but that is pretty much all that is the same. I watch gymnastics quite often and even the motions we do are different. The do a more fluid type of motion. Whereas, we do a motion that is specific and is suppose to be sharp and tight, not fluid. I grew up doing cheer. Most gymnasts grow up doing gymnastcs.If I walked in and tried gymnastics I would be so far behind the girls my age. If I did gymanstics I would be the type that went for the gold at the Olympics. Not the kind that does it recreationally. If I walked in now I would be so behind the girls my age that are trying to get where I would try to get if I was doing it. Do you get what I am saying?

  30. I happened upon something just a few minutes ago. It says that cheerleader are nearly five times more likely to suffer from a serious injury during practice or a performance than any other sport, including football, soccer, and even rugby.

    Just putting it out there.

    • I think it would help your cause to go ahead and post a link to whatever it was you happened upon. Like this:

      Just a thought.

  31. Also, Alaskan crab fishing is the most dangerous job in the world… so it must be a sport… what?

  32. That is a job not a sport and has never tried to be a sport. Look I have said before just because it is dangerous does not make it a sport. But forever people have said how football is so dangerous and they get hurt so much. Thery have said that about wrestling, baseball, basketball, and so many other things that are sports. My point when I say that it is more dangerous is to show that they are working just as hard to get hurt as much and more. You don’t get hurt by sitting on the sidelines or just watching. You get hurt by doing. You get hurt my practicing and working at it. I am sure Alaskan crab fishing is very hard but have they tried to be a sport?

    • A lot of people DO consider fishing a sport, they don’t have to ‘try to be a sport’. They just recognize that some people consider it a sport and some don’t. I’d even venture to say that there are more people that consider fishing a sport than there are people that consider cheerleading a sport. If you want to call cheerleading a sport, then by all means, go ahead and do it, I can’t stop you… just like you can’t stop me from calling a circle a square… We’re both wrong. The key difference is that one of us recognizes it and the other doesn’t.

  33. So you are saying that you recongnize that I am wrong or that we are both wrong? The part about many people considering fishing a sport is partly true. Most people from what I have read say it is a hobby and a sport, depending on how you are doing it. One person said that a sport is something done with judges, umpires, referies, etc. So when it is done as a contest it is a sport. Therefore, fishing and cheer would both be sports if you are doing them as a contest but if doing it recreationally or maybe just school cheer, in my sense, would not be a sport but a hobby. This is a website that I got some answers from. You can decide whether it is a hobby or a sport. See what defines a sport and see if it fits the bill of anything else we have been discussing.

  34. Several of the people from your “source” mentioned that it has to be something you can make money doing on order for it to be considered a sport… I don’t necessarily subscribe to that logic, but I don’t wholeheartedly disagree with it either.

    And here are two other “sources” for you, both of which are written by women…

  35. Look I didn’t have time to go to the first link but I did for the second link. From what I read the second one was mainly people that agree with me and helped my cause. How did it help you in any way?

  36. I was talking about the articles themselves, not the comments…

    This tells how cheer may be considered a sport for colleges by the NCAA.

    This was some of the cheer articles about how cheer is becoming a sport.
    In her arguement she made quite a bit of typographical errors but I
    agree with her.

    This is the type of cheer I want to be considered a sport.


  39. So confused by this link.

    • Faaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaantastic!

  40. Sorry, the first time I clicked the link it just said dumbfans and a search box. This time I clicked it and it loaded what it was supposed to. So she’s dumb. What this proves I have absolutely no idea. Is this to try to prove that cheerleaders are dumb because of the stereotypical things about cheerleaders? Maybe she just couldn’t get into Duke so she cheered for Butler and was actually happy Duke won. Statistics show that about cheerleaders 90% of cheerleaders hold a, I think it was either 2.5 or 3.0 GPA. Also, about 82% of cheerleaders are involved in other activities.

    • In high school? Because at the college level there’s no way I would believe that… Unless being in a sorority counts as “other activities”

    • Once again, I admire your tenacity here, but you need to show us and not tell us.

      “Statistics show that about cheerleaders 90% of cheerleaders have, I think it was either 6 or 7 toes on their left feet. Also, about 82% of cheerleaders are born without eyelids.”

      See what I did there? No links, you’ll just have to trust me on all this. It’s totally right, though.

  41. Weller Ross: It just meant cheerleaders in general and did not specify at what level or what type

    Classic17: Sorry, I don’t think about it. I don’t just look at cheer stuff when it has to do with commenting back. I look at so much stuff and on so many websites that I can’t find things again or remember where I found them in the first place.

    • Then there is absolutely no way I believe that… unless 82% of all cheerleaders are the ones that are in high school or junior high… in that case I believe it.

  42. It could also be talking about all-star cheerleaders. Just saying. I couldn’t really tell you and when doing collegiate probably not. Unless you are going to be doing something in the field that you were involved in before college you probably won’t be doing much in college besides a job, school, and in this case cheerleading.

  43. Pop quiz:

    1. True or false? Judging criteria in UCA competition includes things like “visual appeal” and being able to “effectively lead the crowd”

    The answer is “True”

    2. True or false? Real sports don’t care how visually appealing something is, as long as it gets the job done to walk away victorious. Whether or not your smiling during the competition doesn’t matter, and it doesn’t matter if the crowd is happy or not, as long as you did what you needed to do to win, while staying within the rules of the sport.

    That answer is also “True”

    3. True of false? Based on the fact that the previous two statements are true, cheerleading is most definitely a sport.

    That answer is “False.”

    Thanks for playing.

  44. By “effectively leading” it means when they have their small cheer section when they use thier signs. This is in college and high school cheer not competitive cheer. “Visual appearance”, so they want us to look nice. We stay in the rules and if that’s is what they want the rules to be than we follow it. So, because we look nice and we are judged on if we are dressed in uniforms that fit criteria, we have shoes, socks, everyone is dressed the same, has the same make up, and the same bow we are not a sport? Also, by visual appearance they mean are your formations right, are they in lines that they should be in, are they using the whole floor, do the stunts in the pyramid work together in that formation, and are they spread out or close together during the dance. Visual appearance for judges in cheer competitions is a wide variety. They want everyone to look the same and use good spacing on the floor, is that so bad? Most sports are not judged on this because most sports that are judged in the way cheerleading is it is usually done individually so the don’t need to be in the right formations or have proper spacing. Also, sports are not usually judged on this because they don’t look at how they use the floor or at the team a one. Usually they are watching individuals like how I watch Kevin Durant more than I watch Russel Westbrook or how I will watch Kobe Bryant more than Lebron James in a game between The Heat and The Lakers. Also, the whole team is out there at once in cheerleading; whereas, in other sports they usually just have part of their players out there. In other sports they are not asked to be the same and most sports are not judged but done on a point system. What constitutes a “real sport”?

    • A small cheer section? Does the collective ability of this “small cheer section” to follow directions reflect in the score by the judges? If not then why does it matter if they can be effectively led?

      Nothing about appearance should in terms of attire and makeup and hairstyle should ever be an influential factor in a sport.

    • Okay, the team must look the same. It’s part of the rules in other sports also, such as no wrist bands, head bands, or those things that cover players entire arm. We have regulations on our uniforms. We can’t wear anything restricting because of the way we move our bodies but there are restrictions on length and such.

      In all star small cheer section you are not leading exactly but fans will say the cheer with you. The louder the section the better your score on this section. Each gym has its own unique cheer. At one of my gyms this was what it was.
      Apex cheer we’re here to win
      national champions
      clap clap clap
      once again go apex

      As you can see we are not telling them to do anything but they loudness of it is what we are scored on.

      By the way, when you have teams telling the fans to do something it is usually college where they are saying “Up on your feet now” or “I say Oklahoma, You say State”. We are not doing that in all star. They may follow with you and say in too but we don’t tell them to.

    • So what happens if you wear something that you’re not supposed to wear? Do you get fined? Oh wait, no participant at any level of your activity makes/generates any money, so it wouldn’t make sense for them to be able to fine you… so it must reflect in your score, and as I said before, attire/makeup/hairstyle should never be an influential factor in a sport.

      As for the “all star small cheer section” you say that they are “not leading exactly” but they are being judged on their ability to effectively lead… so they aren’t leading, but they’re being judged on leading… so that makes sense.

      I won’t even address that “unique cheer” but what I do gather is that your ability to scream louder than another team has a direct impact on your score. That seems like a good idea for a new sport: shouting matches. Let’s get a bunch of drill sergeants and see which ones can yell at people the loudest… actually… that would be a significantly more entertaining competition than cheerleading.

      Also, I have never heard a college cheer squad say “up on your feet” because any self-respecting student section should already be on their feet.

    • I know it has been a while since I have replied. I have been very busy and had forgotten to check this. I’m done arguing with you for the simple fact that you are very ignorant in the area. Now, before you think I’m saying you are stupid I am not. Stupid is when you have been told or taught and you still can not perform the task or do the work. Ignorant is not knowing in an area or about a subject. If you had the experience in this field as I have and you still thought this way then I would accept your argument but you don’t. I realize you do have some experiences and you think I can’t have more experience because I am younger but age is just a number. There are many things that you have more experiences in but when it comes to cheer I have had more experience than some of my coaches. Although, I will give you credit for making a few good points but they were very minor to the argument. I also want to thank you for making me realize that there are people in this world that you can’t change their mind. Good bye and I hope your life goes well.

  45. If it’s a rule it’s no different than teams being thrown out of a game for wearing something they shouldn’t or having to cover up tattoos. Being thrown out or having something that doesn’t move with you body can hurt your score.

    YOU ARE NOT BEING JUDGED ON EFFECTIVELY LEADING IN ALL STAR CHEER!!!!!!!!!! Do you get it now. this tells what you are being scored on. Does it say effectively leading in that anywhere????

    The unique cheer is to show what team you are and where you are from pretty much. They already know but it’s your way of saying it. It gives your fans a chance to yell for you. The loudness is what we were once scored on, not so much anymore.

    The up on your feet was just an example I didn’t say that that’s exactly what they said it was just an example. You will hear high school cheerleaders say at half time shows or such things as that.


  47. It says “crowd appeal” on this sheet more than a couple times… and it also says “keeps crowd in the performance” … so maybe it doesn’t say effectively lead verbatim, but I don’t know how else you would interpret that.

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