Cheerleaders prepare to bring it on at Tasmanian competition

We’re not cheering for the football team anymore, we’re aiming for a perfect routine, All Star Cheer and Dance Tasmania co-owner Tanya Lanham says.

Cheerleading is on the rise in the country, evident by the decision to host Tasmania’s first state all star cheerleading competition in Hobart on September 16.

Lanham and co-owner Dee Gillen will be joined by about 84 students at the Infinite Spirit All Star Cheerleading Competition after setting up their Launceston-based school in February.

Whatever people might think of cheerleading, it was physically hard to do, Lanham said.

“It works every muscle and you also get to perform. They’re learning how to trust each other and how to work together.”

Cheer squads aimed for ‘hit zero’, where no faults or mistakes were registered in a routine and no points were deducted, she said.

“It is so hard to lift someone in the air and do it with the right timing and do it correctly.”

It certainly was not all about pom poms, with jazz, hip hop, lyrical and all star cheerleading all categories to compete in, she said.

Gillen said the competition presented a great opportunity for the young cheerleaders to experience what they haven’t experienced before.

“Cheerleading is growing so much on the mainland that it’s now growing here in Tasmania too,” Gillen said.

The reason cheerleading was growing was “it’s an athletic sport, that allows all abilities and all ages to come in and do something together as a team”.

There was a bid for cheerleading to become an Olympic sport in two games time, Gillen said.