Cheerleading in the US High Schools
Cheerleading from the English words cheer and leading has long been a tradition in the United States to support your favorite sports team. The historical roots of cheerleading carry us to the very beginning of the emergence of the most team sport in the United States, in particular, of American football.
The date of cheerleading originating is November 2, 1898. It started with a case of supporting a football team with a group of fans from the University of Minnesota during an American football match with a team of Northwestern University; that day Minnesota won. Of course, cases of fans support for the team have been observed before, but this case was the first notable and organized, which had a decisive role in the development of cheerleading.
Soon the first support group of six young people was organized. This is today most of the cheerleaders – girls, but a hundred years ago, at the dawn of cheerleading, the situation was quite different.
The first groups of “cheerleaders” appeared in 1923, but they remained undeveloped until the beginning of World War II when most of the young Americans went to the front. With the advent of girls in this sport, the arsenal of cheerleaders actions became more diverse – new movements and forms began to appear.
In 1948, the National Cheerleaders Association (NCA) was formed. Its organizer was Lawrence Herkimer, a cult figure in the history of cheerleading, the creator of the first cheerleader camp, and the company that manufactures sweaters and skirts for cheerleaders. He also became the author of the corporate jump, named in his honor – Herkie. He also owned the idea of creating the Spirit Stick, which was originally used as a consolation prize for losing teams, which eventually became the symbol of unbending spirit and desire to win.
In the sixties of the last century, the NFL had its own professional teams of cheerleaders – the first appeared at the Baltimore Colts football team.
At the end of the last century, cheerleading began its triumphant march around the world; in Japan, even special training camps for cheerleaders are organized.
In 1987, the American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators was created, whose task was to establish and maintain new safety standards for cheerleaders.
In 1965, the first competitions of cheerleaders among college teams took place. Since 1978, cheerleading championships have been held annually in the United States, and since 2004, the World Championship has been held at Walt Disney World Resort Disneyland.
Cheerleading is a sport in the sport. If basketball players can bully each other, push and exchange blows, then the task of the cheerleaders is just the opposite – to remove negative emotions, communicate with the audience and calm it down. A mandatory requirement for members of a dancing support group is not to shout out anything rude or offensive during a performance, to be always polite, not to smoke in front of the audience, to increase the morale of their team. Cheerleaders are also prohibited from doping and taking drugs.
As a result, cheerleading becomes almost one of the most popular sports activities in high schools. There were conducted a special selection of cheerleaders able to conduct movements necessary to support a team.
Participants and cheerleading elements
- Flyer – top floor of cheerleaders;
- Base – bottom floor;
- Stantes – support, several stantam build pyramids;
- Cheers and Chants – chants, invigorating the viewer or telling him any information;
- Toe touch – jump, in which the athlete lifts straight feet at an angle of 90 degrees;
- Pirouette – a turn on one leg at 360 degrees.