Why It’s so Hard to Quit Cheerleading
Being on a cheerleading team is about so much more than sport. No matter what position you are you’re an integral part of that team. You have to be at every practice or you’ll let your group and entire team down. People’s lives are literally in your hands and you have to operate at a level of teamwork greater than any other sport.
Cheer is unique. You practice all year, throwing little people around, bumping and grinding against others which fosters a lot of closeness. You create an incomparable bond of trust and respect for your teammates. You have to work together, someones life is on the line.
Cheerleading is hard to quit because you’re not just leaving a sport you’re leaving a family. Your quitting a sisterhood that you’re obliged to hang out with 2–4 times a week. You’re no longer surrounding yourself with 23 other people with a the same passion and you’re no longer working towards a common goal.
Leaving cheerleading makes you realize how much fulfillment a sport can bring you. Whether you’re working towards winning Worlds or just beating another team at a local competition quitting cheer leaves you without shared ambition.
If that’s not enough, there is something special about flipping your body upside down. People ask you how you do it and you can’t even explain it. After years of training you don’t think about it, you just do. Once you quit cheer you don’t do that any more. There are no tuck circles in real life. You’re left craving opportunities to stretch and will take any opportunity to go upside down.
So while you’re still in the sport take it for all that it is. Don’t complain when your coaches tell you you’re going to run another full out — because every one that you do is one full out closer to your last one. Don’t hesitate to throw your scary tumbling line, you are not too tired and one day you won’t be able to do it at all. Tell your teammates you love them, tell your coaches you appreciate them and never take for granted the unique opportunity you have to be on a cheerleading team.