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Cheerleading Is A Competitive Sport Essay

3518 words - 14 pages

Cheerleading has changed a lot over the years and is no longer what people think it is. Cheerleading is no longer shaking pompoms around and yelling to the crowd (Tanner). It is becoming a physically athletic sport, with higher demands than most realize. Cheerleaders deserve the same credit as other athletes, but unfortunately don’t get that credit they deserve. What many americans think of cheerleading, is a stereotype. Cheerleading has become a sport, and not many people see how.
Cheerleading started with only males in 1898, and started accepting few females in the 1920’s. Cheerleading teams didn’t start having a lot of women until the 1940’s. Many women started cheering then because so many men left to serve in World War II (“History of Cheerleading”).
Cheerleaders from the University of Oregon, started the popular trend of using flashcards to get the crown more involved. When cheerleading first started, the cheerleaders only would lead cheers, but in 1923 tumbling and acrobatics got involved in cheerleading. By the time the 1960’s came around cheerleading was found in almost every high school across the country (“History of Cheerleading”).
The Universal Cheerleading Association, also known as UCA was founded in 1974 by Jeff Webb, UCA still plays a big role in cheerleading today. The main goal of the Universal Cheerleading Association was to teach more advanced skills to cheerleaders. Just 13 years later, the American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators also known as AACCA was founded, the goal of the AACCA was to teach coaches how to coach safely (History of Cheerleading).
What most people think cheerleading is, is a bunch of peppy girls with megaphones rallying their team to victory. They think of girls simply standing on the sidelines of the football field or basketball courts smiling and cheering for their team (Pennington). Also many think of pretty blonde high school aged girls dating the quarterback of her high school football team (Tanner). Many also think cheerleading is just one big popularity contest. The term cheerleading simply says that cheerleading is just leading cheers, but it is much more beyond that (Rider).
There is a lot more to today’s cheerleading than most people think. Pep rallies and cheering at football games is just part of cheerleading. Participation of cheerleaders is increasing dramatically with the amount of cheerleaders almost tripling 3 million over the past 8 years (Jones). Most high schools in the United States dropped their school gymnastics teams, some reason being because gymnastics is dangerous. Gymnasts not being able to be on high school gymnastics teams, caused them to start cheerleading. When gymnasts joined the teams, cheerleading became getting more intense since gymnasts have so many high difficulty skills (Pennington).
Cheerleading today is harder than most think, the cheerleaders look more like gymnasts and perform routines with higher risk. Females...

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