The (Well-Known) Secrets to First Place


Competition season is well underway, and we know you’ve probably had one or two chances to hit the mat this season. Whether you came out on top or had an outcome that felt a bit disappointing, it’s all part of the cheerleading world. So, how can you guarantee that you’ll come out on top at the next national cheerleading competition? We have good news and bad news.

The bad news: You can’t.

The good news: You can control how hard you hit your routine and with what level of technique. When you do all of that, you can rest assured you’ll get the best placement possible for your team.

We’re going to break down everything teams need to do to secure a victory this all-star cheerleading season.

Know the Score Sheet

When it comes to winning first place, it all comes down to your score. As many athletes and coaches know, the difference between first and second could be a matter of tenths of a point. Every little bit counts. That’s why you simply cannot afford to not know your score sheet. Make sure to incorporate elite elements. Practice timing and technique, as that’s where it’s easy to lose points on the score sheet. Use the “most” column to determine how many athletes should be performing each skill in order to reach your quantity scores.

When you know the score sheet and the scoring system inside and out, you’ll be better prepared to set up your team for success. You’ll also be educated enough to push back on deductions that you believe should be overturned.

Technique Before Difficulty

Which would you prefer at a competition: Having a solid, clean, simple routine, or an elaborate one that falls and bobbles? Most people will go with the first option. As wonderful as the intense, dramatic routines are, they often include challenging stunts. This is awesome for advanced athletes who are ready to take on the challenge. However, it can be too much for some to handle until they have a little more practice with the necessary foundational skills.

Start with basic skills and stunts until your team can perform them perfectly. Then, slowly add in more complex elements as they show mastery. This not only builds your cheerleaders’ confidence, but it also allows you to boost that technique score to the maximum.

Repetition is Key

If you want your athletes to hit every time, you’ll need to walk through every part of the routine again and again. Break down your stunts into smaller chunks and clean them until they are perfect. Drill jump technique at every practice. The more consistently you work at something, the more likely it is to stick when you hit the performance mat.

We’ll see you soon!

Competition season may be in full swing, but this is just the beginning! We can’t wait to see your team hit the mat at the next WSA cheerleading nationals. Your level 5 and level 6 teams even have a chance at earning their bids for the Cheerleading Worlds competition. Sign up now for a competition near you.