How to Prepare for Cheerleading Tryouts

Practice your moves before trying out.

Are you wondering how to prepare for cheerleading tryouts? Cheerleading tryouts can be nerve racking at best. Being prepared for them is the key to appearing confident and showing your true spirit.

Tips About How to Prepare for Cheerleading Tryouts

Practice promotes confidence, and confidence is your best friend when you step before the judges. The best way to prepare for cheerleading tryouts is to practice all the elements that will be required at try outs. For almost every squad, this will require that you learn either a group cheer or make up your own cheer and be able to perform it. Many squads will want to see some tumbling skills if you have them. Being able to do the splits are a given as well as being able to do a few cheerleading jumps like the herkie. So, how do you get all this ready in time for cheerleading tryouts? Begin preparing early and keep the following tips in mind.

Clinics Are Your Friend

If you really want to make the squad, take advantage of any clinics that are offered. These are often offered during the summer so this means you will need to plan ahead. However, these clinics are well worth your time and effort.

Stay Flexible

Scorpions, liberties, toe touches and the splits are all considered moderately basic cheerleading skills. They do require a great amount of flexibility, and this flexibility is achieved by gradually stretching your muscles. Stretching and increasing flexibility is something that simply has to be done slowly over time. Trying to push yourself to stretch too much during try outs will probably lead to injury.

Stay in Shape

Ask any cheerleader, and he or she will concur that cheerleading can be grueling. Routines are like quick sprints that last for two to three minutes. Games are generally a few hours and practices require aerobic fitness and strength. If you make jogging and lightweightlifting a part of your regular fitness routine, you'll be in much better shape to take on try outs.

Work on Your Jumps

The best way to improve your jumps is to practice them. If you can, set up a video camera and have a friend tape you so you can see your form and where it might be a little off. (Attending a gym or clinic can also help you make improvements in this area.)

Find Out What Is Required

Ask a current cheerleader or even ask the coach what you can do to improve your chances of making the squad. Every squad is different, and knowing what you're in for will help you hone those skills that need a little work.

Make Your Personality Shine

It's important to remember that squads are not just looking for people who have cheerleading skills. Great skills certainly help and make you stand out from the crowd, but a nasty attitude will get you cut quicker than any tumbling faux pas. Most squads will hold a try-out week where girls will be expected to learn a routine and perform it on the final try out day.

Give 100 Percent

Give 100 percent every single practice during try-out week. Coaches are looking for girls that are serious about being on the squad, and giving your all can really set you apart from the rest of the girls.

Check Your Bad Attitude at the Door

One of the most important points to keep in mind when deciding how to prepare for cheerleading tryouts is to maintain a good attitude. Who wants a Debbie Downer on their squad? There is no complaining, no whining and no "I can't do this" in cheerleading. Girls get cut for being unpleasant to work with even if their skills are up to par.


Being focused is about showing up on time, paying attention when you're being spoken to and following directions. Coaches look for people who are focused because they feel they can take a focused squad member farther than one that is there to goof around.

Develop Good Habits Now

Being a cheerleader is being an example to the entire school. It's about leadership, hard work and dedication. Skills can be taught and honed (and they should be if you're working your way to a stellar squad), but personality cannot be fixed nearly as easily. Start developing good habits now and you're sure to make the squad!

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How to Prepare for Cheerleading Tryouts