Join the thousands of boys and girls, men and women who want to learn cheerleading. Cheerleading is not as easy as it looks. Learning to be a cheerleader takes a lot of hard work, hours of practice, and dedication by the cheerleader and also their family and friends. But don't let that discourage you. You can find success whether you start out very young or wait until you are a bit older.

Learn the Sport of Cheerleading

Start the learning process by getting familiar with the sport of cheerleading.

  • Read up; learn about the history of cheerleading and who invented cheerleading. There is a lot of information you can learn about cheerleading over the internet.
  • Check it out; visit the library for books and magazines about cheerleading.
  • Get face-to-face; there are many school squads where you can talk with cheerleaders and coaches, you can also talk with students and instructors at cheer, gymnastics and dance schools. Learn from those who are already cheering. Ask the coach what they are looking for and what they expect of their cheerleader.
  • Watch and learn; from the competitions on television and the cheerleaders at school and sporting events. Become familiar with the sport and you'll have a better idea of what to expect.
  • Preparation; get ready to cheer. You need to get your body in shape as well as your mind. Eating healthy foods and getting proper rest and exercise is very important. You may want to join a cheer, gymnastics or dance school since they can help you learn the routines and the skills you'll need to be a cheerleader.
  • Talk it up; you can talk to cheerleaders from across the country in online cheerleading discussion boards. Ask as many questions as you like and offer advice and encouragement to other cheerleaders.
  • Practice the routines; take note of hand positions that punctuate the words. Have someone you trust write down all of the words of the cheers and chants and also make some quick sketches to show where your hands and feet should be as you go through the routines. Then practice, practice, practice! Think you've got the routine down? Don't guess! Ask someone you trust - someone who knows about cheerleading to watch you do your routines. Don't just ask your mom or dad. Parents often say whatever you do is wonderful and that won't help you improve. Their encouraging comments may boost your ego, but if you are doing something incorrectly you need to know. Mistakes can hinder your chances of being selected for the team. Practice smiling too. Smiles are very important and they may be forgotten when you are concentrating on a difficult routine. Learn to make your smile a part of every cheerleading routine.
  • Make friends; cheering is a great way of making new friends. And cheerleading camps are a great place to learn more skills and meet new friend.
  • Go and tryout; tryouts consist of following a cheer, and sometimes a dance. You will want to watch carefully to see exactly what the instructor is teaching you. Don't be afraid to ask questions. And even if you don't think are ready when tryouts come around, go and tryout anyway. You will learn what your weaknesses are so you can improve for next time and it will be a good experience for you. Hold your head up, feel the confidence flowing through you as you perform the routine you've been practicing and remember to SMILE. Good luck!
  • Have fun; the judges will be looking for cheerleaders who smile and are having fun learning new cheers. The cheerleaders from the year before are going to be back and they've been practicing all year. You're going to be up against some tough competition, but you can do it. Do your best and have fun!
  • Dress the part; cheerleader shirts are the easiest way to show your interest in the sport of cheerleading. And cheerleading jewelry can accessorize any outfit.