What Makes Cheerleading A Sport?

Decent Essays

While the definition of a sport may vary with the person, the dictionary definition of a sport can be best described as, “an activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes against another or others for entertainment” (Oxford Dictionary). Cheerleading has been a topic of an ongoing controversial debate as to whether or not it should be recognized as a sport. Players that engage in sports, such as, football, basketball, and baseball all display a genuine liking for their sport, which generally emphasizes why they take part in the activity. Similarly, cheerleaders have the same mindset because they display a genuine passion of being apart of a team and working with others to achieve a common goal. …show more content…

Orlando’s argument can be considered invalid because other sports, such as figure skating and gymnastics, are considered forms of art, but are also represented as olympic sports.
Competitive cheerleading represents a different side of the stereotypical cheerleader that revolves around of tumbling, jumping, and dancing, alongside a greater amount of contact activity in comparison to sideline cheerleading. Lori A. Selke, a writer for, states that, “in order to gain and maintain those athletic qualities, a competitive cheerleader must train as hard as any other athlete… In addition to attending cheer practice to practice stunting, tumbling, and dancing, cheerleaders must also weight lift and work out several times a week” (Selke). The intensity of cheerleading as a whole illuminates why it is a sport rather than simply an activity. The overall devotion to the sport and time a cheerleader must sacrifice to practicing, refining, and executing skills is clearly similar to the training of any other athlete. A competitive cheerleader typically spends at a minimum, two to three hours seven days a week practicing and perfecting the skills involved in a routine (Almasy). Furthermore, competitive cheerleading encompasses a high injury risk because of the immense amount of contact activity, which involves being tossed and flipped through the air. As a result of the amount of contact activity involved with cheerleading,

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