When You Want to Fly, but Coach Makes You Base


In the world of cheerleading, many girls join because there was something that attracted them to the sport in the first place. For some, it was the allure of tumbling. For others, it’s the bright stage lights and sparkly uniform. But for many cheerleaders, it’s the stunts. We’ve all watched the flyers soar into the air with confidence and command a routine. If you’ve taken the plunge to join a cheer team, but you weren’t chosen to go in the air, you may feel a little bit let down. Today, we are going to discuss why you may not have been chosen as a flyer and what you should think about instead.

“I wasn’t chosen to fly.”

If your coach has not even tried to have you go in the air, there is likely a good reason. Take a look around at your team. How tall are you compared to them? How much experience do you have? Many athletes assume that all it takes to fly is being lightweight, but it comes down to much more than that. Coaches need to make decisions that benefit the entire team, especially when it comes to all-star cheerleading. If your coach thinks you are particularly strong, it usually makes more sense to keep you on the ground as a base. If you are taller than your teammates, this may just not be your year. Many athletes base one year on a team as the biggest and fly the next year on their new team.

“I’m little, but I still wasn’t picked.”

Flying comes down to a whole lot more than just size. While you may be little, you may not be very tight in the air. Your flexibility may not be that strong. Or, it could be that there are only three flyer spots and you’re the fourth flyer. Don’t panic, you may still fly one day, but it’s important to recognize that you won’t just be chosen based on your size. If you really want to fly one day, talk to your coach. Ask what stretches and drills you can work on at home to better your chances for the next year. You never know — they may need you in the air sooner rather than later if an injury happens or a current flyer quits.

“I’m flexible, but I still wasn’t picked.”

Oftentimes, there are quite a few factors that go into flying. The best flyers are:

  • Light
  • Flexible
  • Tight
  • Fast learners

If you are flexible, but you haven’t flown a day in your life before, that may be contributing to your coach’s decision. Also, think about what it is you’re good at. Are you a rockstar tumbler? Are your dance skills unrivaled? Coaches will look at their team and pull their best dancers and tumblers to the side to perform during the stunts in order to make the routine stronger. Trust that your coach has a method to their madness.

Choose WSA

At the end of the day, it’s about trust. You need to trust that your coach is doing what is best for the team, and your attitude should also be what is best for the team. You aren’t a bad cheerleader if you aren’t chosen to fly; on the contrary, that usually makes you a strong asset elsewhere on the team. Get in touch with WSA Cheer today to sign up for your next competition. We look forward to seeing you base, tumble, and perform!