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Be a try-out superstar with tips from coaches

 
 
Have about a million questions before you face the judges? We’ve got answers. Jarnell Bonds, former cheerleading coach of University of Maryland’s 2010 National Cheerleading Association grand championship-winning team, is telling you how to ace your audition.

 

Not a cheerleader? That’s OK—Coach Bonds’ advice is universal. Check out our take-aways below and go rock your try-out!

 

I’ve never cheered before. How can I prepare for tryouts?

All squads are different, so you’ve gotta go right to the source. “Communicate with the coach and current team members about what the team is looking for. Focus your prep based on their feedback,” Coach Bonds tells us. That way, you’ll know whether you should double up on dance or make the most of your motions. E-mail your coach to ask if you can watch a practice or two.

Take away: Chat up a coach or assistant coach, or buddy up with a few babes on the team. Maybe they’ll invite ya over to run drills, or give you some pointers on your technique.

 

What will make me stand out from the crowd?

“I always prefer the athlete who shows the strongest desire to join the team. They’re the ones who’ll work the hardest,” says Coach Bonds.

Take away: You might not be a superstar, but that doesn’t mean you won’t be grabbing a jersey. Show Coach just how genuinely psyched you are about being a part of the squad, and you’ll score major bonus points.

 

I can’t really tumble. Do I still have a shot?

“Strong tumbling is essential,” Coach admits, “but no more important than stunting and showmanship. All-star teams value these categories, as well. Many times, high school squads don’t have as big a focus on their score sheet for tumbling.” Show the coach what you can do—safely!

Take away: Certain skills can be taught or improved upon. Put your best on display, and if you’re weak in a particular area, own up to it, but do show Coach what your capable of.

 

What should I wear?

“Wear a practice uniform that mimics something you have seen current team members in—look like you are already part of the team. This helps the coach picture you as a future team member,” Coach Bonds informs us.

Take away: The JV soccer team always rocks school tees and gym shorts to practice? Grab their go-to uni and look the part. But above all else, wear clothes that you’re comfortable in so you can move freely. Tugging down your short-shorts 24/7 is a major no-no.

 

I haven’t worked out in a while. How can I condition?

Coach Bonds recommends push-ups for core strength, as well as lunges and squats to give ya a good base for stunting. Flyers should work on core muscles (think crunches!) for stability in liberties and scorpions. Don’t forget to do cardio three to four times a week so you can get through a 3-minute routine (it’s waaay longer than it sounds!).

Take away: Cardio is essential for most sports, but think about which body parts you’ll use the most, then head to GL’s Workout tab for exercise ideas.
 
 

BY KATIE ABBONDANZA AND BRITTANY TAYLOR ON 8/23/2012 1:00:00 PM

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