face it. Sometimes, it’s tough defending yourself as a cheerleader. Despite all
of the conditioning, athleticism, and pure heart you put into the sport, some
will balk and have the nerve to say you are not an athlete. While you know that
not to be the case, one thing you can say is that sport or no sport,
cheerleaders have the biggest hearts when it comes to supporting any cause.
Case in point? The cheerleaders from Garden
Oaks Montessori, a pre-Kinder to 8th
grade public Montessori school
near downtown Houston, recently supported the Wounded Warriors Amputee football
team in their annual Super Bowl. These cheerleaders banded together to welcome,
cheer, and support the team composed of men and women who lost a limb while
serving in Iraq or Afghanistan. Like the
cheerleaders from Garden Oaks Montessori, most squads always have others’ best
interests in mind. Here are three areas we know cheerleaders just can’t be
Always cheering for a cause. Cheerleaders
spend a lot of their time on the sidelines
supporting their school team, or in
the audience supporting their squad at competitions. But, what some may not
realize is that cheerleaders also use their vibrant personalities to cheer on
causes. Some attend certain community events every year; others might visit
seniors in assisted living homes to warm hearts. There’s no doubt about it, cheerleaders
are always cheering for a cause.
Emily Ward, cheer coach at Garden Oaks Montessori, said, “I think this is what
cheerleading is all about–cheering for a cause–
whether it's your school team,
Pink Ribbon Week, or bringing spirit to any event. In this instance, it was
showing support for the men and women out there defending our freedom. It was
our way of saying, ‘we stand behind you! We support you! We are here for
you, and we love you!"
Emily–we couldn’t have said it better.You cry when they cry.
cheerleader, you put your heart and soul into supporting other teams. You are
everyone’s biggest fan. No matter the sport, event or competition, you not only
deal with your own emotions,
but you also vicariously feel other’s emotions. Their
win is your win. Their heartbreak is your heartbreak. You may be on the
sidelines, but you know the work that’s been put forth and you can hardly keep
your emotions in check–win or lose.
Cheer coaches experience the same emotions. Ward said, “we had the honor of
leading the Pledge of Allegiance. I almost cried as I looked at my little team
with hands on hearts, just as we practiced. I looked at the amputees behind
them. I thought, ‘this is why those men and women do it! This is why they
sacrifice themselves: for the freedom of our country, and for the future of
these kids.’ How appropriate for us to cheer them on in a game they love–American
football.”Win or lose, you always have your
most teams also share this sentiment. But, it’s worth noting that cheerleaders
have their school’s teams back, AND their squad’s back.
They say blood is thicker
than water, but we’d argue that glitter is also thicker than water.
“They had us cheer right down on the 50-yard line, steps away from the edge of
the field. As a play would end, the players would run by and give our
little cheerleaders fist bumps and high fives, and tell them they were doing a
good job,” Ward shared.
When you’re on the flip side, and get to feel the pride of others cheering you
on, that’s worth every minute of blood, sweat, and tears.
The Wounded Warrior
Amputee football team is composed of American men and women who lost a limb
while serving in Iraq or Afghanistan. More than 400 NFL stars and celebrities
have participated in WWAFT vs. NFL alumni games in the past. This year, Omni
Cheer was proud to have been able to help support the cheerleaders of Garden Oaks Montessori support this
cause.For more information about Wounded Warriors, visit wwaft.org.