Cheerleaders are often a misjudged group of athletes. We work really hard at what we do and get very little recognition. We’re the first on the chopping block for all jokes, but we still keep a smile on our face. We stay classy and don’t let the haters get to us. We love our sport more than anything, and will always keep up our positive demeanor no matter what. If you have ever cheered, you know there are some real struggles though.
1. Other people trying to cheer.
I don’t know why people feel the need to do this, but every time I tell someone I was a cheerleader they make up a cheer of their own… It’s the crap that no one but the TV cheerleaders do. It goes something like this “give me an A, A, give me an L, L”. If I don’t know you, I will be polite and smile, but it’s really annoying. Just please stop and leave it to the professionals.
2. People asking you to do a cheer.
Really? You want me to belt out a cheer in the middle of the grocery store? You’re making me feel really awkward, and I would rather not. I will probably smile, blush and then run off as fast as I can.
3. People assuming you’re stuck up.
When you tell someone you’re a cheerleader, you have a reputation. Apparently we are popular, stuck up, and have an attitude. Yet, I have never met someone who meets these stereotypes. Of course, there will always be a couple of bad apples in every barrel, but for the most part we’re upbeat, outgoing, and optimistic people
4. People think you have hickies, ALL THE TIME.
If you have ever cheered, you probably were in an all girl stunt group at some point. With that being said, you hold someone’s foot right at your collarbone. There is a lot of rubbing in that area. Also, if the stunt goes wrong you can kicked. You’ll get bruises and people automatically think they are hickies. Only cheerleaders experience this pain and no one else will believe it.
5. People thinking you’re a robot.
Just because we always have a smile on our face, doesn’t mean we’re always happy. We are humans and we have emotions. It’s just part of the job description to not show the negative ones. We have to get the crowd pumped up and excited for the game, we can’t do that with a frown on our face.
6. Everyone assuming you’re dating the quarterback.
It’s pretty cute in the movies when you see the head cheerleader and the quarterback together. But I have yet to see that in real life.
7. Having a plethora of bobby pins.
You need your hair in place. Ain’t nobody got time for whispies, so you have 10 million bobby pins. But you lose them every game and can never find them afterward.
8. Waking up at 6 AM for competitions.
While everyone is sleeping in until noon on a Saturday your cute little butt was up at 6 AM. You’re half awake driving to the competition in a mini van filled with your teammates. You can do your makeup in any state of sobriety because you’ve mastered the moving winged eyeliner in the car.
9. Having a bad reputation.
If one of your teammates gets out of line, or someone makes up a rumor, your whole squad gets a bad rep. It’s really annoying that you can’t just be treated like everyone else and get the benefit of the doubt.
10. Hearing “Cheerleading is not a sport”.
People definitely have a lot of audacity to make such a statement about something that they’ve have never done before. Not the smartest thing to say to someone who has dedicated their whole life to this sport, sacrificed so much, and still doesn’t let that stop her grinding. I would really like to punch them in the face, but I will just give you an argument that you will not win.
As cheerleaders we’ve seen it all, been through it all, and have heard it all. Nothing really phases us anymore. That’s why we are so great at keeping a poker face. We’re great team players because that’s the only thing we know. We’re amazing girlfriends because we are encouraging. We are like peaches. We are sweet and juicy, but have a strong core. So next time you see a cheerleader, give them praise instead of your judgement.
Featured Image via “Bring It On” Screengrab