British Cheerleading Association
The British Cheerleading Association Northern Classics competition is on again in the Blackpool Winter Ballroom for 2012. An event that attracts fun, family and friends, who enjoy seeing the hard work of all of the cheerleading groups around the UK come together for this, the top competition in the North of England.
Cheerleading is a fantastic way to develop good coordination, keep fit and have a lot of fun. It is a very sociable sport and combined with dancing and competitions, and it is no wonder that the sport attracts over 100,000 participants in the United States and is said to be the fastest growing team competitive sport in the world, with 82 countries now involved internationally.
More to it than Pom Poms
Most of us have the view that cheerleading involves some pretty, American, blonde, high school girl bullies dancing around waving pom poms. They shout; give us an ‘L’, and carry on chanting and shouting their high school football name. Famous examples of this include Olivia Newton John, who played cheerleader Sandy, in Grease. Hayden Panetierre played the cheerleader character in the TV series Heroes, and Reese Witherspoon was a cheerleader before entering law school in Legally Blonde.
Despite the Hollywood stereotypes, the sport now draws more than teenage girls. Whole families, sons, fathers and daughters are engaging in this high fitness, high drama sport. Acrobatic pyramid building is one feature, known as stunting, and is combined with tumbling, gymnastics, choreography and coordinated costumes and appearance. It’s a tough sport now, with some intense competition.
Brits love doing anything where they can possibly outdo the Americans, and the competition between us and our US compatriots is fierce. At the British Cheerleading Association, the Blackpool Northern Classic competition is preparation ground for those who want to go on to compete at the International Cheerleading Competition held by UGA in the USA.
The standard is high, and if you want to have a look, just check out some of the competition footage on You Tube. Cheerleading today is like a sophisticated team effort at rhythmic gymnastics, with all the skill involved. I for one, would not want to be dropped after being flung and spun ten feet into the air! If you want to see this sport live, be sure to check out the British Cheerleading Association Northern Classics completion held in Blackpool each year, and you just might see the next Olympic sport in the making.