How to Juggle Sideline With Competitive Cheerleading

by omni

As a competitive cheerleader, January means one thing: your life is about to get way more hectic. Competitions are finally happening, and gym practices have morphed into extra lengthy marathons. And of course, second semester starts and sideline cheer is calling your name again. You cheered for football season, so your school coach naturally wants you to continue on the team for basketball‚ and those games are starting soon! Without disappointing your coaches or your teammates, and without losing your mind with an overloaded schedule, there are ways that cheerleaders can accomplish both sideline and competitive cheerleading. However, it does take a large amount of planning and perseverance! If this sounds like your life, take a deep breath, and take into account these three ways to approach your coinciding cheer seasons: 1. Communicate. If you participated in sideline cheer in the fall, your competitive cheer coach most likely already assumes you’ll be returning for the spring semester. However, January‚ just like it is for you‚ means that it’s crunch time for competitive cheer coaches. This is a time when your coach has to coordinate travel plans, practice schedules, parent requests and issues, and anything else in between now and getting to all the competitions. Since so many things are running through your coach’s mind, give them a friendly reminder that you will, in fact, be participating in sideline cheer and will do all that you can in order to make it not conflict with competitive cheer activities. 2. Put competitions first. Well, technically put schoolwork first, but then put competitive cheer second. After you talk to your competitive cheer coach, pull your sideline cheer coach aside and tell them where your priorities lie‚ in competitions. If there are two cheer commitments scheduled on the same day, you have to choose the one for your competitive team. Plain and simple. Make no mistake, your sideline cheer team is important, but there’s some competitive cheer activities that you can’t afford to miss. Also, be specific as to what days you will be traveling before any basketball games start, so your coach can anticipate your absence ahead of time. It won’t be the easiest conversation in the world, telling your sideline coach that you cannot attend everything on the spring agenda, but it’s a necessary talk to have. They may be bummed, but will ultimately understand why their team comes second. 3. Have your teammates help. Two cheer teams means two sets of routines, two sets of team uniforms and accessories, two sets of practice schedules, and two separate attitudes. For sideline cheer, you tone done the tumbling; for competitive cheer, you ditch the school spirit. There’s a lot to remember at all times and sometimes, a cheerleader participating in two teams can get a bit spun out of whack. When this happens, let your teammates step in! Whether you’re on the sidelines or warming up at a competition, ask your teammates for answers if anything is a bit unclear or if you can’t recall the newest instructions from your coach. You have two coaches after all! If your teammates know that you’re juggling so much, they won’t hesitate to fill you in on anything you may have missed or got lost in translation. Have you juggled both competitive and sideline cheer teams? What are some more helpful tricks for busy cheerleaders? Tell us your story in the comments below!

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