USA Cheer: NCAA Endorses Catastrophic Injury Policies

USA Cheer LogoThe NCAA Board of Governors recently unanimously approved a set of policies to help prevent catastrophic injury and death across all NCAA sports.

We are proud to say that the recommendations include areas that the American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators, now part of USA Cheer, has been promoting since its first Cheerleading Safety Manual, published in 1990, and which many of USA Cheer’s member organizations have teaching at camps and clinics for at least as long.

These include developing a practiced emergency action plan, acclimatization and conditioning, strength and conditioning of personnel, protective equipment, and education and training. Additionally listed is an area that is already a centerpiece of cheer – sportsmanship.

USA Cheer: New USA Cheer/AACCA Safety Manual

USA Cheer LogoThe long-awaited USA Cheer Safety Manual update has been completed!

The manual is the 4th edition of the original AACCA Cheerleading Safety Manual, which made cheerleading history when published in 1990. It was the first publication to specifically address risk minimization in all areas of safety awareness, legal and medical responsibilities, skill progressions, emergency planning, and performer readiness.

The new manual builds upon the foundations laid by the latest AACCA Cheerleading Safety Manual and updates important information and concepts that have changed since the last publication in 2006.

In addition, the manual also now includes an online appendix, so that future updates or additional forms and reference material can be added as needed.

The manual is currently in the printing process, and online versions can be downloaded as part of the new online course, which is available on the USA Cheer training portal. To complete the course, click the button below and select “USA Cheer Safety & Risk Management Section 1” from the “Safety/Risk Mgt” section. Join USA Cheer for course discounts!

USA Cheer: Rules Training for Coaches and Officials!

USA Cheer LogoUSA Cheer announces the first ever comprehensive safety rules course!

Unlike other rules training that primarily reviews new rules, this 4-part course covers the entire spectrum of the high school cheerleading rules. There are two courses available, with one geared towards coaches and another with additional fifth training section for rules officials.

The course is developed by the USA Cheer rules committee which is led by rules experts Bill Ahern and Jim Lord, both of whom are also advisers to the NFHS rules committee. The course is designed to be compatible with both the USA Cheer and NFHS safety rules, and should serve as the foundation for rules understanding for any cheerleading coach or choreographer.

The course will be updated each year, along with a “new rules” add-on for coaches who have completed the comprehensive training.

For more information, and to complete the USA Cheer Safety Rules Course, click below and select “Responsibilities and General Rules (Part 1)” from the “HS Rules” section. Join USA Cheer for course discounts!

USA Cheer: New High School Rules

USA Cheer LogoThe 2019-20 high school rules were published to the USA Cheer site on May 1 and are available here.

Some of the highlights of the new rules include allowing certain braced flips using one bracer, allowing inversion releases to land in extended stunts, modifying the “switch lib” rule to allow landing on one or both feet. In addition, new restrictions were placed on sign use, prohibiting signs from being released from a top person.

Further changes were made to clarify previous rules, and minor changes were made so that the USA Cheer and NFHS rules are virtually identical!

In Review – April 2019

April means Daytona, ICU, and Worlds. Congratulations to all the new champions and good luck to those competing at May’s end of the season events.

In Review – February 2019

February has come and gone, bringing with it a couple of the largest events of the year. UCA High School Nationals and Cheersport. Today starts March and NCA. Good luck to everyone competing.

In Review – January 2019

January has come and gone, taking along with it one of our favorite events, UCA & UDA College Nationals.

In Review – October 2018

October came and went, bringing Fall and Halloween with it. This month I was reminded of cheerleading being used in headlines to catch the attention of readers. People published an article titled Cheerleader’s Alleged Admission that She Didn’t Want to Be Mom Is Admissible in Baby Murder Trial that had nothing to do with cheerleading knowing including cheerleading in the title would increase clicks. The article even starts with “The former cheerleader accused of” and the only other time cheerleading is mentioned is another reference to “the former cheerleader”, unless you count links to other articles related to the same story. It is a reminder of the gap between the attention and respect cheerleading is given.

In Review – April 2018

Daytona is over and Worlds is almost over. Here’s what else happened in April:

USASF: Team With Exceptional Athletes Selected as National Team

Dear USASF Members:

Thanks to USA Cheer, the USASF was just granted the opportunity to send a team with Exceptional Athletes (formerly called Special Needs) to the International Cheer Union (ICU) World Cheerleading Championship in April of 2018 to represent the National Team for the USA!

In order to meet the timeline of this special invitation, an Exceptional Athletes Sub-Committee met to create an expedited selection process. The committee decided to award this opportunity to a team who already competes and who could adapt a routine to the ICU format and safety guidelines in time for the championship.

Congratulations to Maryland Twisters Eye of the Storm, who will represent The National Team for the USA at the 2018 ICU World Cheerleading Championship!

Moving forward, a process and system will be implemented to include more teams with Special Needs in the selection process. We will likely create a video submission program (similar to the current Worlds bid video program for teams with Exceptional Athletes) where a distinguished panel of judges will select the official team. Be on the look out for the 2019 US National Team information that should be released this Fall.

Qualify To Perform At Worlds, 2018

Teams with Exceptional Athletes still have the opportunity to submit videos to compete for 5 At Large bids to Exhibition at The Cheerleading Worlds, 2018. Don’t forget—videos are due no later than March 1, 2018. Click here to learn more!

In Review – March 2017

Welcome to April. March came and went with USA Cheer Announcing the Junior Coed U. S. National Team and Nfinity introducing “Flyte”, calling it the ultimate stunt shoe. The biggest news of the month will likely turn out to be the Supreme Court ruling on uniforms, as reported by Associated Press, Bloomberg, LexisNexis, National Law Review,

USA Cheer Announces U.S. Junior National Team

Eastside Middle School will represent the U.S. in the Inaugural International Cheer Union Junior World Championship

Memphis, Tenn., January 30, 2017 – USA Cheer, the national governing body for cheer in the U.S., has announced that Eastside Middle School from Mt. Washington, Kentucky, will represent the U.S. at the International Cheer Union (ICU) Junior World Championship in the newly developed Junior Elite division, which will take place on April 26, 2017 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports at the Walt Disney World® Resort in Florida.

The ICU is the international governing body for cheer, and has members from 110 Member Nations. Their World Championship hosts athletes from around the globe. Last year’s World Championship included National Teams from 70 countries in the Elite (ages 14+) and Premier divisions (ages 15+). This year, the ICU has added Junior divisions for athletes aged 12-16.

The Eastside Middle School cheerleading team is coached by Carrie DeBold and Kristal Stillwell, who will also coach the team in preparation for the ICU World Championship. Currently, the team is focused on preparations for the National High School Cheerleading Championship (NHSCC). Eastside Middle School took first place in 2016 in the Small Junior High division, and was the Kentucky State Middle School Champions from 2013 to 2017.

“It’s exciting that the ICU is now including junior division in the World Championship. Engaging these younger cheer athletes helps build a solid foundation for future teams,” says Tony Nash, Director of USA Cheer, and Head Coach of the US National All Girl Team. “Eastside Middle School has a track record of success in Kentucky and at the National level. Carrie and Kristal have built a talented team that supports their school and stand as an example for other communities.”

“I am very honored and humbled that my program was selected to represent the U.S. at the ICU World Championship, said Carrie. “We are excited and ready for the challenge to take cheerleading to the next level on the world stage!”

For more information about USA Cheer, please contact Sheila Noone, [email protected]

About USA Cheer

The USA Federation for Sport Cheering is a not-for-profit national governing body for all disciplines of cheerleading (including Traditional Cheerleading, STUNT, and Club Cheer/All Star). USA Cheer has three primary objectives: promote safety and safety education for Cheer in the United States; help grow and develop interest and participation in Cheer throughout the United States; and represent the United States of America in international Cheer competitions.

In Review – December 2016

December, along with 2016, has left us. Here’s the news that ended the year, including the news of the year.

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