The USASF recently released the rules that will be used during the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons. Spirit Post decided to list every change and give some insight into the impact each change will have. This article discusses the General Safety Rules and Routine Requirements that apply to all levels.
Athletes must always practice and perform on an appropriate surface. Technical skills (stunts, pyramids, tosses or tumbling) may not be performed on concrete, asphalt, wet or uneven surfaces or surfaces with obstructions.
This rule should have little impact, but gives officials support for calling violations on teams practicing and performing on these surfaces. I also anticipate repercussions, such as coaches losing credentials and gyms losing membership, for violating this rule.
Jewelry of any kind including but not limited to ear, nose, tongue, belly button and facial rings, clear plastic jewelry, bracelets, necklaces and pins on uniforms are not allowed. Jewelry must be removed and may not be taped over. Exception: medical ID tags/bracelets.
and uniform rhinestones. Rhinestones are not allowed when adhered to the skin as opposed to a uniform.
This rule change may have a significant impact because it allows rhinestones without restrictions, meaning they can be adhered to a uniform or skin.
(I first read this rule different than what Les Stella clarified. I thought the exception that made rhinestones on uniforms legal was removed, making it so no rhinestones would be allowed, but Les stated the impact of this rule is to remove the restrictions on where rhinestones could legally be placed.)
An athlete must not have gum, candy, cough drops or other such edible or non-edible items, which may cause choking, in their mouth during practice and/or performance.
This rule should have little impact, but gives officials support for asking athletes to dispose of these items.