Is cheerleading a sport?

Hrvoje Zolo, Staff Reporter

Is cheerleading a sport?

This topic has been controversial for quite some time now. There are different opinions from everyone, but the most important opinion was the judge’s when U.S District Judge Stephan Underhill confirmed that cheerleading was not a sport in federal court.

According to Fox News, he said,” Competitive cheer may, sometime in the future, qualify as a sport under Title IX. Today, however, the activity is still too underdeveloped and disorganized to be treated as offering genuine varsity athletic participation opportunities for students.”

 The main reason why this topic was brought to the federal courts was because of a school in Connecticut called Quinnipiac University. The girls’ volleyball team at that school was cut due to their budgets, and that’s when they revolted.  They sued the school soon after because the volleyball team was being replaced by a competitive cheer squad. The final decision was that cheerleading was not a sport under Title IX.

Over the week I interviewed some of our students and there were many different opinions. Senior cheerleading  captain Maeve Cloherty said,“ Cheerleading is a sport because we compete and practice like any other sports, and we cheer at games.  It compares just the same to any other sport because we compete about seven times a year and we have to be in shape to throw a girl and lift a girl in air.”

A lot of people agreed with Cloherty like Junior Marika Floros who said, “Yes it’s a sport because we compete against other teams, just like any other sport. We work just as hard as other sports just like football, and we go to state, which will hopefully repeat like last year.”

On the other hand, some people disagreed and thought cheerleading is not a sport. Senior Mike Buckley said,” Cheerleading is not a sport at all because there is no competition. Yes, it compares athletically and it takes a lot of skill, but there is no competitive edge.”

 Another student who agreed with Buckley is freshman Mike Gmitro who said, “No, it isn’t a sport because certain sports like poms actually involve dancing where you have to train for, but that’s more of a mental aspect and not physical. It’s a team sport, but as an individual you don’t really compete against other individuals like football or soccer.”

Clearly the students at RB have completely different opinions on this topic. Despite good points on both sides, everyone has their own opinion and you have to respect that. On the other hand, my opinion is that cheerleading is in fact a sport. I think it would take a huge amount of physicality to lift another teammate above your head. Also, it is competitive because RB’s cheerleaders went to state last year and took second. They don’t compete as much during football games, but when it comes down to state, the competition is very fierce. As of now cheerleading is not a sport, but I think in the near future it will in fact be a competitive sport.