Every cheerleader gets fired up when someone tries to argue with them, whether or not cheerleading is actually a sport. It could be a cocky football player in one of their classes, a teacher that talks down about cheerleading, or Just a friend that wants them involved in something more “athletic. ” When in all reality, cheerleading requires just as much effort as any other sport. Varsity. com states that there isn’t an actual definition of a sport, but there are many qualifications required to be considered a ‘sport. ‘ And cheerleading easily qualifies.
To be qualified as a sport, there must be physical activity which involves propelling a mass through space or overcoming the resistance of mass. Okay so maybe cheerleaders don’t lift weights like football players do, or throw a basketball like basketball players do, but we do stunt. Cheerleaders lift people, cheerleaders throw people and catch them when they come back down. So how is that any different from lifting a weight, or throwing a basketball? Granted some people lift weights heavier than most flyers, we throw ours and catch them efore they hit the ground.
Cheerleading gets an A in this category, for sure. “Contesting,” or competing with/against an opponent is also required. No cheerleaders may not have games like baseball or basketball, but we do have annual competitions. Isn’t that the same thing? We have opponents, and different awards to win. Especially competitive cheerleading, they compete almost every weekend, all around the world. All year long as a matter of fact! Cheerleaders don’t get an off season like other sports, they work year round. Yet another A for cheerleading.
It must be governed by rules that explicitly define the time, space, and purpose of the contest and the conditions under which a winner is declared. This is another requirement that must be reached. Cheerleaders have time limits, mat sizes, score sheets and so much more that declare the winner in competitions. One cheer cant be too long, you can’t step off the mat, and you can’t throw a pompom to far… Cheerleading has weird rules that gets points deducted Just like any other sport does. So that’s another A.
Acknowledgement that the primary purpose of the ompetition is a comparison of the relative skills of the participants. Have you ever seen those competitions on ESPN? Yeah, those are national championships. Just like basketball, football, or whatever other sport. They have different divisions though, so there is more than one champion. It’s not like that in basketball, there is one overall champion. But still, same thing, right? That’s yet another A! So far, cheerleading is four for four. But there are still two more qualifications to meet for cheerleading to be considered a sport.
The Women’s Sports Foundation makes it clear that “any physical activity in which relative performance can be Judged or qualified can be developed into a competitive sport as long as: 1) the physical activity includes the above defined elements (got them! ) and… 2) the primary purpose is competition verses other teams or individuals within a competition structure comparable to other ‘athletic’ activities. ” This is where my argument ends. Not because of any physical definition- as you can see, cheerleading meets ALL of the athletic specifications, but competition comes second.