How to max out your score sheet

Tryouts are over, and your squad looks to be the best one ever. You and your fellow athletes couldn’t be more excited to create the most epic routine and win that trophy. However, the perfect cheerleading performance is more than just sweet dance moves and awesome stunts. There are several things to consider as you start to design the routine that will astound the judges.

Perfection Before Progression

Your choreographer put the most amazing stunt sequence into your routine. One problem: your team cannot hit the skills. The solution – break down complex skills into a series of easier ones, and work on perfecting those fundamentals before moving onto harder variations. You cannot do a switch-up if your team struggles with a straight-up liberty. By mastering fundamental skills, your squad will progress more quickly towards difficult ones. More importantly, you will find your team can advance to difficult skills more consistently once you have perfected the basics.

Emphasize the Positive!

Your team has the most beautiful full-twisting layouts in the country, but those gymnasts on your squad have difficulty hitting a clean high-V. Move those fulls front and center, and make your tumbling sequence a little longer, while keeping your cheer short and sweet (make sure it hits the minimum 8-counts for the competition requirements). The secret to improving your overall impression score is to make sure the judges get to see everything you can do well, while giving them little time to deduct on the things which aren’t quite as amazing.

Clean, Consistent Practice

At the end of choreo, this routine looks like the best one your squad has ever performed. However, two months later you still have not had full team attendance to a practice, and half your team has forgotten the dance. The only way to rock that epic dance and earn that trophy is to make sure that your whole team is committed to coming to practice, and working on those skills until you hit it every time. Then practice even more, so that you cannot miss it. When everyone is present and giving their all there is nothing that your squad cannot accomplish!

Getting the Perfect Cheer Mix

Your coach drilled you for months, you got countless bumps and bruises cleaning those double-downs, but the sound effect for the dismount is two counts off! All that hard work could be lost if you do not have a perfect cheer mix with sound effects and vocals as unique as your team. Think about a unique, customized mix from a company like New Level Music as the sound track for your season. If you have a smaller budget consider the many options at which lets you choose a top-quality cheer mix and add team specific voiceovers and phrases. Getting the perfect music will showcase your skills to the world!

Check the Rubric

Imagine this. Your team executes flawless kick fulls in your pyramid, but the competition does not score dismounts as part of the pyramid score. Different cheerleading competition organizations use different rubrics to score your performance. Aligning your routine with the rubric will make a huge difference in your score on the day of the competition. Be certain to visit the website for the competitions you are planning to attend this year and get a copy of the rubric BEFORE choreography starts. Don’t be afraid to show the rubric to the choreographer and work with them to create the greatest routine those judges have ever seen.

Your team works hard all year to create the perfect cheerleading performance. Don’t let all that work go to waste with a routine that does not meet your goals. A little careful consideration before choreography and an honest assessment of your team’s abilities will help you to create a performance that you and your squad can be proud of.