The Athleticism of Cheer is Apparent at Marian

By J1 Reporter Elle Stiles

The roar of a crowd. The rattling of bleachers. The bright, flashing scoreboard. This is the high school sport experience.

    And Marian is no exception.

    Friday night football games, intense basketball battles, and fierce volleyball matches are a core part of Marian culture.

    And Marian cheer does it all.

    The thrill of cheering at a game is like nothing else. And although cheering at games isn’t junior Ava Carson’s favorite, she does enjoy tumbling at games.

    Carson always wanted to cheer at Marian, so it was a no brainer that she did cheer freshman year. Carson loves to tumble and stunt, which she does occasionally on the JV team. 

When asked about the athletic credibility of cheer, Carson stated that she believes the athletic effort it takes to accomplish cheer stunts is enough for cheer to be considered a sport.

    The debate over whether cheerleading is a sport or not is currently a great controversy.

    Many argue that since sideline cheerleading is only cheering and doing simple routines, that it shouldn’t be considered a sport.

    On the other hand, many argue that the athletic rigor and strain that come from competitive cheer make it a sport.

    And Coach Kayleigh Hanson is one of those who say cheerleading is a sport. 

    She promptly stated that “There is no denying that cheer is a sport. It’s an Olympic event.” And Coach Hanson has first-hand experience with the athleticism of cheer. 

    She grew up as a dancer, cheered at UNO, and has coached at Marian for three years now. So it’s safe to say that she has plenty of experience with cheerleading.

    Hanson clearly believes that cheer is a sport. She argues that “there is a large amount of athletic ability that goes into being able to perform routines at the caliber of national competitions.” 

She also describes the athleticism, stating that “athletic aspects of cheerleading include tumbling and stunting and the endurance to yell through an entire routine.”

Overall, it seems that the practice and endurance it takes to stunt and tumble are major factors in considering the technique and skill of cheer.

Clearly, Marian cheerleaders are talented (just watch any of their performances). And it seems that many in the cheer community agree that it should be considered a sport.

Although cheer has a universal reputation of being just a “social activity” and many consider it to be easy and effortless, there’s clearly a lot of skill and effort that goes into it.

So it’s safe to say that cheer includes the athleticism required to be a sport everywhere, no matter who sanctions it as an official sport or not.

Marian’s JV cheer team poses for team pictures

Photo illustration of pom poms and a megaphone by Elle Stiles

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The Network is the student newspaper of Marian High School, Nebraska's only Class A College-Preparatory School for young women.

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