Throwback Thursday: Cheer Athletes

THROWBACK THURSDAY IS BACK! My SUPER original new series brings you all that is Meredith, basically from day 1. This post is brought to you by the ridiculous amount of college essays I created while applying too entirely too many schools! YAY! AND it’s about CHEERLEADING! Consider my arguments made (on January 3rd, 2008) and let me know what YOU think about the debate!

GO! GO! G-O! G-O! Let’s GO read!  (???)

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“Cheerleading is not a sport.”  Why not?  As rudimentary as this argument may seem, I was once on the opposite side of the matter, lashing out at the stereotypical cheerleader without giving them the benefit of the doubt.  Then, during my freshman year in high school, I joined rank with these peppy bundles of excess energy.  My commitment to this activity changed my mind about it permanently.

It turns out that most cheerleaders are just as passionate about cheering as any one individual is about a particular sport.  We are loud, obnoxious and sometimes even annoying, but that is our job.  It is our job to go out of our way to create an energetic atmosphere at sporting events and school functions so that, even if our team loses, some people might have the chance to walk away smiling.

No, we do not “play”, we cheer.  We do not throw or dribble a ball, but we do have a constant threat of getting hit by one.  We do not swim, or pin, or kick.  No, we do not have time outs.  We are the time outs… and the halftimes… and the entire game.

We have two-a-days.  We run.  We work on repetition of routines that challenge our strength, stamina, agility and tolerance.  We lift weights, we lift girls.  We defy gravity, and look incredible doing it.  We sweat, but continually smile.  The majority of girls end up in the chiropractor’s office or the hospital from the strenuous work cheerleading entails.  When we mess up, we do not get a second chance or “play”.  We do not have backups.  No matter how well we do all year, we only get one shot to go to state, very few shots at glory.

Cheerleading is a true passion of mine.  The adrenaline rush I experience every time I step out onto the field or court always puts me in a positive mood, something that has been imperative throughout high school.  It is because I gave cheerleading a shot that I have earned a varsity letter in the sport every year since I was a sophomore.  I have been able to contribute my own physical strength and voice as well as my creative mind to the squad, such things that ultimately led to the highest placing at State Competition in St. Pius X history.  Cheerleading has strengthened me mind, body, and soul.  Cheer has contributed in making the last four years of my life unforgettable, teaching me lessons that I would have never even imagined had I participated in another sport.

Because of a series of  injuries due to cheerleading, it is out of the question in college.  However, it has influenced me to be a better person.  I am now more inclined to take a situation and examine it with a positive perspective as well as contribute my own ideas to a situation.  I am more of a social butterfly because of cheer.  I will always be a cheerleader at heart.

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