College cheerleading is a highly competitive sport that requires a combination of athleticism, showmanship, and teamwork. To become a college cheerleader, you need to have a wide range of skills, including tumbling, stunting, and dancing. In addition to physical abilities, cheerleaders must also have strong communication skills, as they are responsible for leading the crowd and representing their school.
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Some of the most common skills needed to become a college cheerleader include quadruple pirouettes, aerials, advanced turns, and advanced jumps. Coaches evaluate a recruit’s cheer performance, from voice projection to proper motion technique.
Every school will ask to see the recruit perform their cheer and fight song. While many recruits cheer on their high school team, most college coaches don’t evaluate them at these events.
In this article, we will explore the various skills and requirements needed to become a successful college cheerleader. We will discuss the different types of cheerleading, the level system, and the evaluation process.
We will also provide tips on how to get recruited for college cheerleading, including attending clinics hosted by the college, emailing a recruiting video, and participating in high-level club cheerleading team competitions.
By the end of this article, you will better understand what it takes to become a college cheerleader and how to get started on your path to success.
Skills Required for College Cheerleading
College cheerleading is a physically demanding sport that requires a combination of skills, including tumbling, stunting, jumps, dance, physical fitness, and endurance. In this section, we will discuss the specific skills that are required to become a successful college cheerleader.
Tumbling is an essential part of cheerleading. It involves a series of acrobatic movements, such as flips, handsprings, and aerials. To be a successful college cheerleader, you need to have a strong foundation in tumbling skills. Some of the tumbling skills that college cheerleaders should master include:
- Back handsprings
- Front handsprings
- Full twists
Stunting is another crucial aspect of college cheerleading. It involves lifting and supporting other cheerleaders in the air while performing various acrobatic movements.
To be a successful college cheerleader, you need to have excellent stunting skills. Some of the stunting skills that college cheerleaders should master include:
- Basket tosses
- Partner stunts
- Group stunts
- Transitional stunts
Jumps and Dance Skills
Cheerleading also involves jumps and dance skills. College cheerleaders must have excellent flexibility, strength, and coordination to effectively perform these skills. Some of the jumps and dance skills that college cheerleaders should master include:
- Toe touches
- Pike jumps
- Herkie jumps
- Hurdler jumps
- Jazz squares
- High kicks
Physical Fitness and Endurance
Physical fitness and endurance are critical for college cheerleaders. Cheerleaders need to be in excellent physical condition to perform the various acrobatic movements required in cheerleading. Some of the physical fitness and endurance skills that college cheerleaders should master include:
- Cardiovascular endurance
- Strength training
- Flexibility training
- Plyometric training
- Core strength training
To summarize, college cheerleaders need to have a combination of skills, including tumbling, stunting, jumps, dance, physical fitness, and endurance.
Mastering these skills requires dedication, hard work, and discipline. Cheerleaders need to train and condition their bodies regularly to perform at their best.
Preparing for College Cheerleading Tryouts
If you’re interested in becoming a college cheerleader, it’s important to start preparing early. The competition can be tough, and you’ll need to have the right skills and attitude to succeed. Here are some tips to help you get ready for college cheerleading tryouts.
High School Cheerleading
You’re already on the right track if you’re currently a high school cheerleader. High school cheerleading can provide a great foundation for college cheerleading.
Ensure you attend all practices and games, and work hard to improve your skills. Take advantage of any opportunities to attend cheer clinics or open gyms to get additional training.
All-star cheerleading can also be a great way to prepare for college cheerleading tryouts. All-star teams often have a higher level of competition and can help you develop advanced skills.
If you’re currently on an all-star team, attend all practices and competitions, and work with your coach to identify areas where you can improve.
College Cheerleading Tryouts
When it comes to college cheerleading tryouts, there are a few things you can do to increase your chances of success:
- Research the college and its cheerleading program. Make sure you understand the requirements and expectations for the squad.
- Attend any college clinics or practices that are open to prospective cheerleaders. This will give you a chance to meet the coaches and get a sense of what they’re looking for.
- Practice your skills regularly. Make sure you’re comfortable with all of the basic cheerleading moves and any advanced skills required for the college squad.
- Work on your fitness. Cheerleading can be demanding, so ensure you’re in good physical shape.
- Practice your game day cheer. This is a key part of college cheerleading, so ensure you’re comfortable with the routine and can confidently perform it.
- Be confident and enthusiastic. Coaches are looking for cheerleaders who are positive, energetic, and passionate about the sport.
Here’s a table that highlights some of the skills you may need to demonstrate during college cheerleading tryouts:
|Jumps||You’ll need to be able to perform a variety of jumps, including toe touches, pikes, and herkies.|
|Tumbling||Depending on the college, you may need to be able to perform advanced tumbling skills like back handsprings or layouts.|
|Stunts||You’ll need to be comfortable with a variety of stunts, including pyramids, basket tosses, and partner stunts.|
|Dance||Cheerleaders often perform dance routines as part of their game day cheer, so make sure you’re comfortable with basic dance moves.|
|Voice projection||Cheerleaders need to be able to project their voices so they can be heard over the crowd. Practice speaking loudly and clearly.|
Remember, college cheerleading tryouts are a chance to showcase your skills and your personality. Be yourself, work hard, and have fun!
Recruiting Process for College Cheerleading
Becoming a college cheerleader requires more than just cheerleading skills. In order to be recruited, you need to have a solid academic background and a proactive approach to the recruiting process. Here are some sub-sections that can help you navigate the recruiting process:
Before you start the recruiting process, it’s important to research the colleges you are interested in.
Look for schools that have co-ed squads, competitive teams, and offer cheerleading scholarships. You should also consider the academic programs offered by the school, as well as the location and size of the campus.
Learn More: Do College Cheerleaders Get Scholarships?
Academics play a big role in the recruiting process for college cheerleading. Coaches want to see that you have a good grade point average and are taking challenging courses. Make sure to keep your grades up and take the necessary classes to meet the academic requirements of your target schools.
A recruiting video is an important part of the recruiting process. It should showcase your cheerleading skills, as well as your personality and communication skills. Make sure to include a variety of stunts, jumps, and tumbling passes in your video.
Email and Communication with College Coaches
Email is a great way to introduce yourself to college coaches and establish a relationship. Be sure to personalize your emails and include information about your cheerleading skills, academic background, and why you are interested in their program. It’s important to be proactive and follow up with coaches to show your interest in their program.
To help you better understand the recruiting process, here is a table that outlines the steps you should take:
|Research||Research colleges with co-ed squads, competitive teams, and cheerleading scholarships|
|Academic Background||Keep your grades up and take challenging courses|
|Recruiting Video||Create a video showcasing your cheerleading skills and personality|
|Email and Communication||Personalize your emails and follow up with coaches to show your interest|
Clinics and Training
Attending cheerleading clinics and training camps can help you improve your skills and get noticed by college coaches. Many colleges offer summer camps and clinics, which can be a great way to get exposure and make connections with coaches.
Alumni and Competitive Teams
Many college cheerleading programs have alumni who are involved in the recruiting process. Reach out to alumni and ask for advice on the recruiting process. You should also consider joining a competitive team, which can help you improve your skills and get noticed by college coaches.
Fall is the peak recruiting season for college cheerleading. Make sure to start the process early and be proactive in reaching out to coaches. Attend cheerleading competitions and events to get noticed by coaches and showcase your skills.
In summary, the recruiting process for college cheerleading requires a proactive approach, solid academic background, and strong cheerleading skills. By researching colleges, creating a recruiting video, and communicating with coaches, you can increase your chances of getting recruited.
Game Day and Competitive Cheerleading
Game Day Cheer
Game day cheerleading is all about leading the crowd and creating a positive atmosphere for the team. Teams are evaluated on their ability to lead the crowd, proper game day skill incorporations, execution of skills, motion technique, and overall routine.
To excel in game day cheerleading, cheerleaders should have excellent voice projection, proper motion technique, and advanced jumps. It’s also important to have a good understanding of the team’s fight song and the crowd’s favorite cheers.
Competing in College
Competitive cheerleading requires a combination of cheering, dancing, jumping, tumbling, and stunting. To compete in college, cheerleaders should hone their skills and work on perfecting their techniques.
It’s important to have a good balance of skills in each category, but every cheerleader has different strengths. Talk to your captain or coach if there’s a skill you like best or that you do well, and work on improving other areas.
NCAA and NAIA Cheerleading
Cheerleading is recognized as a sport by the NCAA and NAIA, which means that colleges and universities offer scholarships for cheerleading.
NCAA Division 1 schools are the most competitive and require the highest level of skill. NAIA schools and junior colleges also offer cheerleading scholarships. Cheerleaders at these schools compete in national competitions and perform at games.
To summarize, college cheerleading requires a combination of skills, including advanced jumps, proper motion technique, and voice projection.
Game-day cheerleading is all about leading the crowd and creating a positive atmosphere for the team, while competitive cheerleading requires a balance of cheering, dancing, jumping, tumbling, and stunting. The NCAA and NAIA recognize Cheerleading as a sport, and scholarships are available at many schools.
Being a college cheerleader requires a unique set of skills and qualities. It’s not just about being able to perform impressive stunts and tumbling passes. College cheerleaders need to be able to lead the crowd, work well with a team, and represent their school with pride and enthusiasm.
In this article, we have covered some of the key skills and qualities that college cheerleaders should possess. These include:
- Strong physical abilities, including flexibility, strength, and endurance
- Excellent communication skills, both verbal and nonverbal
- A positive attitude and the ability to motivate others
- The ability to work well in a team and follow directions
- A willingness to learn and improve
- A commitment to representing their school with pride and enthusiasm
While these skills and qualities are important, it’s also important to remember that each college cheerleading program may have its own specific requirements and expectations. It’s important to research the program thoroughly and prepare accordingly.
If you are interested in becoming a college cheerleader, we encourage you to start preparing early. Attend clinics and camps, practice your skills regularly, and work on developing your communication and leadership abilities. With hard work and dedication, you can become a successful college cheerleader and represent your school with pride and enthusiasm.
Remember, being a college cheerleader is not just about performing impressive stunts and tumbling passes. It’s about being a positive role model, representing your school with pride and enthusiasm, and working together with your team to create an unforgettable game-day experience for your fans.