The thigh stand is one of the most basic stunts in cheerleading, but it is also a very important skill to master. The skills and techniques that you learn during a thigh stand are essential for mastering more advanced formations like the elevator stunt and a full extension stunt. Practicing a thigh stand is also a great way for your cheerleading squad to work out any kinks in your stunts, get familiar with the count series and build trust.

Though a basic move, the thigh stand still requires strength, agility, skill and trust among squad members. This move should only be performed under proper, trained supervision to ensure the safety of everyone.

The thigh stand is a great stunt to use during routines. Though it is simple and basic, adding a couple thigh stand stunt groups to a larger stunt formation can help show off your team's personality and style, bring different levels to the stunt and impress the crowd!

Before any group attempts a stunt, they should discuss and decide on a standard count series. Each and every stunt a group performs should be done on counts, and it is typically the responsibility of the spotter to keep the beat and call it out. Timing is critical in stunting, and new teams need to practice their timing as much as they practice their actual stunts.

Many stunts begin with a two beat, "Ready, OK" count, where all positions bring their arms up and clap once on beat. This helps get everyone's attention, lets them know to focus and assures the entire group that everyone is ready. From there the stunt group gets into formation, and the spotter begins the count series (typically based on an 8-beat count).


How To Perform A Thigh Stand
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How To Perform A Thigh Stand

Set-Up
Stunt Groups: 1
Spotter: At least 1
Bases: 2
Flyer: 1
Level: Basic

Formation

Bases: The bases should stand facing each other. Each base should bend their inside leg, lunging toward each other. Their outside legs should remain straight. The bases' inside feet should overlap when they are in the lunge position, with one base's foot in front of the other base's foot. The bases should be sure to keep their backs straight throughout this stunt.

Flyer: The flyer should face forward, in between and slightly behind the bases, with their arms against their sides. After the bases are in position, the flyer should place one hand on each of the bases' shoulders.

Spotter: There should be at least one back spotter for this stunt. A front spotter can be utilized as well, but this guide will only cover a back spotter. The back spotter should be positioned directly behind the flyer, facing forward. The spotter should place their hands on the flyer's waist.

Lift

Bases: On the right count, the flyer, with the help of the spotter, will begin to lift up onto the bases' thighs. The flyer will bring up one leg at a time. As the flyer's leg lands on a base's thigh, that base should wrap their inside arm around the back of the flyers leg (just below the knee), and their outside hand should wrap around the front of the flyer's ankle for support and balance. The bases will hold this position through the rest of the move.

Flyer: The flyer should position one hand on each of the base's shoulders, keep their arms bent and their elbows up, and transfer their weight from their legs to their arms. Simultaneously, the flyer lifts one leg to about a 90-degree angle, placing that foot onto one of the base's thighs. Once that base has the proper grip on the flyer's leg, the flyer should use their arms to push off the ground and place their other foot on the other base's thigh. Once both feet are in position on the bases' thighs, the flyer should extend to a standing position and bring their arms into a high "V".

Spotter: The spotter should position their hands on the flyer's waist and follow the movement of the flyer throughout the entire stunt. Their grip should be firm, but loose enough so that it is not restricting. During the lift, the spotter should help the flyer onto the base's thighs. Simultaneously, the spotter is calling out the count series clearly and loudly.

Dismount
Check back next week for step-by-step instructions for performing a basic stunt dismount, from the thigh stand or elevator position.