Cheerleading tryouts generally occur in spring, with a majority occurring between the months of March and May. Regardless of one’s experience, many cheerleaders don’t give themselves enough time to prepare for tryouts. Even if your tryouts are months away, here are eight reasons why you should already be training: Don’t forget to check out our tryout timeline infograph so you know what to work on and when. You can never be too prepared. Perhaps the most obvious reason you should prepare early is that you can never be too ready for tryouts. You want to be over prepared so you can conquer tryouts and think afterward, “well, that was easy.” You want to get into a routine. However you’re training (running, stretching, tumbling), it takes time to get into a routine that you can maintain. Consistency is good for your body. It can help prevent injuries, keep you from feeling sore, and make working out seem more like a hobby than a chore. You want your body to be a well-oiled machine. Cheerleaders are athletes and athletes need to be strong, flexible, and have stamina. These are traits you can’t teach yourself over the weekend. Your body needs to build up muscle and your lungs and heart need to be strengthened to withstand a three-minute non-stop routine. Flexibility takes time. Flexibility requires patience and constant training. And even once you’ve mastered the splits, you have to keep stretching in order to continue doing them. If you go a few months without stretching, your muscles will feel tight and you could injure yourself if you try to push yourself too far. The cheer spirit doesn’t appear overnight. Something many non-cheerleaders underestimate is the cheerleading spirit. A true spirit is contagious and can conquer losing games and rainy days. While some people naturally have the cheer spirit, most have to learn it. It’s not just about smiling and shouting; there’s an element of confidence, dedication, and motivation. You have to truly want to inspire a crowd and not just memorize and repeat words to a cheer. Mastering this trait can take time and can mean the difference in whether or not you make the cheer team. Even experienced cheerleaders can improve. One of the biggest experienced cheerleaders, gymnasts, and tumblers make is thinking that they already know enough for tryouts. But, if you really want to make the team, why settle for being good? Be great! Keep working out and doing what you already do. If anything, it’ll give you even more confidence to take the stage and shine. You don’t want to exhaust yourself. If you wait to start training a few weeks before tryouts, there’s a good chance you will exhaust your body. It will be easier to injure yourself and stress out about being ready in time. If you go from jogging once a week to working out every day, you’ll feel sore and tired. This can reduce your energy and spirit, which will take away from your tryout and won’t make a very good impression on the cheer coach. You can’t predict hurdles. Unpredictable and last-minute problems and events happen all the time. You can’t prevent these misfortunes from happening, but by training early you can avoid the after effects of a disaster, like a family emergency or a huge homework assignment. By preparing for tryouts early, you’ll still feel ready for the big day in case anything happens that takes away your training time. How early do you prepare for tryouts?