Strength Training, Conditioning Key To Cheerleading
Posted March 10, 2005 4:29 a.m. EST
RALEIGH, N.C. — WRAL's Health Team spent some time with the cheerleaders at North Carolina State University to see what was behind their championship form.
Strength and conditioning coach Wright Wayne puts the squad through eight sprints around Reynolds Coliseum with only one minute, 30 seconds inbetween for rest. In the fall, Wayne emphasizes strength training.
"We're trying to put a good conditioning base and make sure that we have the stamina that we're going to need," he said.
"We're doing a lot of gymnastics, basket tosses, stunts, pyramids -- all of which take a lot of physical strength and ability," said Harold Trammel, cheerleading coach at N.C. State.
The cheerleaders said that stamina is key in their work.
"Our routines are two minutes, 15 seconds and we need a burst of energy for that whole two minutes, so that's why we do a whole lot of sprints," N.C. State cheerleading captain Andrew George said.
Cheerleaders do not end their activities after basketball season. The national cheerleading championships are in April.
"We've won Nationals [for] four years. We're hoping to do it again this year," cheerleader Kelly Smith said.
When they graduate, cheerleaders have to either keep their active lifestyle going or make a big change in their diet. While in training, they eat a lot of pasta and other carbs that they burn right off.