The real perks of being a cheerleader


Hoban Yearbook

Hoban Cheerleaders smiling their way into the 22’-23’ season

Nicole Leslie, Sports-Writer

What inspires young and upcoming athletes to cheer? Benefits, such as free access to sporting events and exclusive merch are just a few perks that draw people to this sport. Not to mention its romanticization in many classic adolescent films. The popular, pretty, and skinny cheerleader seems to run the school while having time to date her equally attractive quarterback boyfriend. For some, that is the reality of cheerleading, but not for everyone. 


Cheerleading is an expensive and dangerous sport. School programs do not always have the money to pay for insurance which halts teams from being able to stunt or tumble. Fortunately, Hoban allows the team creative liberties with their choreography. Opportunities, such as cheer camp, encourage young athletes to polish their skills. 


Instead of focusing on the surface-level perks, Hoban’s cheer squad prides themselves on the grit it takes to support their school. For example, the team never lets their smiles falter, regardless of the game’s outcome. 


Discipline is one of the first skills any cheerleader learns when it comes to positivity and enthusiasm. Being on time to practice, listening to coaches and teammates, and always being prepared are key components to becoming a disciplined athlete. 


Teamwork is crucial as cheer is not an individual sport. Working as a team is the only way to truly engage a crowd and pull a stunt off well. Physical fitness is what gives cheerleaders the endurance to make it through games, despite halftimes, delays, etc. Mistakes are a constant in any sport; stunts fall, tumbling is not always perfect, and people get hurt. However, having the mental toughness to keep going is a necessary life skill.


Confidence and leadership go hand in hand when it comes to cheerleading. Without confidence, the squad will never be able to take command of the crowd and lead them through cheers. The crowd looks to the team for reassurance, even if the outlook is bleak. 


The perks of being a cheerleader go beyond the field and court. This sport helps to shape people into well-rounded individuals and is the key to encapsulating school spirit.