St Augustine’s Priory’s cheerleading team, ‘Dynamite’, is having a very successful season. Combining acrobatics and dance and involving energy, enthusiasm and very hard work, our team is going from strength to strength. Our Director of Sport, Mrs Gosling, reports on their achievements, ‘At the end of April, Dynamite came second out of seven teams in their competition. The team stepped up to perform an excellent and well executed routine.’
Alessia and Lucy, in Lower V, take up the story of their cheerleading season so far.
‘Cheerleading is not too well known as a sport; the definition is “Cheerleading is an activity in which the participants cheer for their team as a form of encouragement.”, this means that all of our routines are up-beat, lively and enjoyable for everyone to watch, as they are visual. In our school we cheer in a physical style where we have a full routine and compete in our league with other teams competitively. Our team is called Dynamite which currently has around 20 members with some new members. It is run by an LDCA coach and Dynamite members are from all year groups ranging from Upper I to Upper V.
Our season began with the Pyramid Off. This took place on 12th December and was our first event of the season. There were 8 teams competing. This competition only featured the main section of a full routine called the pyramid. A pyramid on an all-girls team such as ours, consists of stunt groups of 5 girls where all of the flyers are linked. The pyramid is the most important part of any routine because it scores us the most points. In this pyramid off, the St Augustine’s Dynamite placed 1st out of all of the teams!
The original pyramid competition is not open to the public, only the teams competing, and coaches were allowed. This means that the photos are segments from after we competed. The pyramid is the same in both our spring and summer competitions.
The Spring Competition was our most recent competition and was on 25th April. This is our mid-season event. There were 8 teams competing to earn first place. This competition is the first time all teams compete with their full routines. A full routine consists of an Opening, Stunts, Tumble, Pyramid, Jumps, Dance, and Finish. In this competition Dynamite placed 2nd out of the 8 teams!
So far we are at the top of the league with 35 points, the team in second place is flowing closely behind with 25 points, and the team in 3rd place have 20 points.
The Summer Competition is the last competition of the season. It is the most important competition for many reasons. It is the last chance for all teams to collect points and it is where the points are awarded for which team raised the most money. The summer competition is where all of the teams come back with their full routines but they have levelled up all of the tricks and skills to make it the best it could possibly be. In the summer competition the winning team does their routine again at the end. Dynamite really hopes to do well in this final competition!
Our uniforms are a new design. The uniform used to be a purple ‘v’ neckline top with a pleated purple skirt. Earlier this year the uniforms changed to a purple t-shirt with a rhinestone star and team name on the back of the shirt, it also has a hoodie that looks the same as the shirt but the team’s name is on the front. This is due to recent shipping issues and the rise in popularity of t-shirts and shorts in other teams around the country.
At the beginning of every season all of the teams participate in raising money for uniforms so that we don’t pay full price for them. There are many different ways people have raised money in the past, such as bake sales, making bracelets, selling clothes, or books. This is also good as it teaches us the meaning of hard work. At the end of every season, at the summer competition, the team which has raised the most money is announced. Whoever comes first will earn 20 points, 2nd place gets 15 and 3rd place gets 10 points. all of these points add up to a final total and is used in the summer competition. Different ways people raised money in our team were by selling bracelets and bake sales. A GoFundMe page was also created by one of the girls and it will be used for next year’s fundraising as well.
The Other Schools in the League:
The league currently has 8 teams varying from 7 to 16 years of age. The other teams in the league are the Eagles, Wolves, Cannons, Sharks, Infinity, Wildcats, and Jets. Most of these other schools are from the north London area.
Alessia’s Personal Experience:
My name is Alessia; I have been cheerleading for 6 years and I am now Captain of the school’s cheerleading team, ‘Dynamite’. Cheerleading is a great sport that is very inclusive to all, no matter your skills, and in my 6 years of cheerleading I have played every role in a stunt group which means I have experienced everyone’s job and point of view making me realise how crucial teamwork is.
I have cheered with many different teams with a lot of different people and seen a lot of captains who have showed me different ways to lead so I can find my way. I think that cheerleading is an amazing sport because there is never a dull moment – you are always experiencing new things and upping your skill level striving to be the best. II love to work with our team and I have had a great time leading them to the top places every time this year so far. All of our team hope for the best outcome in this year’s summer competition.
Lucy’s Personal experience:
My name is Lucy, and I have been cheerleading for 3 years now. I’m the deputy captain of the cheerleading team. Cheerleading is an amazing sport that teaches people about teamwork and coordination. Cheerleading is a very inclusive sport; I love how you don’t need to know how to do flips or splits in order to join. In my 3 years of being on the team, I’ve known many different amazing girls. Being on the team has pushed me to be more athletic and is a great way to develop new skills.
Cheerleading is also a great distraction from the business and stress of school, it is a chance to train with other girls to compete in competitions. When I first joined, I immediately knew how much of a team sport it is and how important is it for everyone to work together. In my 3 years of being on the team, I have done every role (asides from flyer) in a stunt group. I’ve had such an amazing time helping the team and seeing girls push themselves to a new limit. The team and I hope for the very best results in the summer competition in July ‘Categories: Junior Priory Post Senior Whole School