Competitive Cheerleading – Tips from the Judges

Share This Post asked several judges, “If you could talk to the squads that you judge, what would you tell them?” Here are the responses!

“We want more synchronization and fewer falls.”

“We notice when the three people in the back row fake their back handsprings. Make better use of them, like getting signs ready on the side or have them put up a banner flag.”

“Stick to your strengths. Your confidence shows, and if you aren’t sure of your routine, we can tell.”

“If the scoresheet calls for jumps, and you don’t include them in your routine, I can’t give you any points for them! If you have half of the squad perform decent jumps, I can at least give you a point or two.”

“When you hit your routine, act as if you expected to do so! We understand the emotion of finally performing the routine you’ve been practicing for months, but an overexcited display makes it look like that was the first time you hit it!”

“During awards, remember that you are representing your school or gym. Regardless of the trophy you receive, be excited and act with class. If you don’t like the opinion of the judges, don’t compete. By entering a contest where judging is subjective, you must accept the decision of the panel of judges.”

“Instead of having a bust-out dancer in the front just blowing everyone away, make sure the dance is synchronized. One person may get a great audience response, but it makes the rest of the squad look bad.”

“Synchronize EVERYTHING! Even the cradles should be together.”

“Use the entire performance area. Staying in one formation or on one part of the floor gets boring.”

“While your hair should be pulled away from your face, it should also look natural. Simple ponytails or french braids are fine, but too many curls distracts from the routine.”

“Have fun on the floor. It is a blast to watch a squad that is having a great time performing. That translates into points!”

“Congratulate the other teams! Sportsmanship is one of the things cheerleaders work for at every game. Of all people in the competition area, you should know what it takes to get to the final round of competition.”

“I would say to enjoy the experience of competition, because you learn so much about yourself and your teammates when you go through this process. ‘Winning’ doesn’t always mean placing first. Only one team in each division can do that. You ‘win’ just by getting to the point where you have earned the right to step on that floor.”

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