Essay on A Study of Injury Incidence in Florida High School Cheerleading

Essay on A Study of Injury Incidence in Florida High School Cheerleading

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Over the past 20 years, the athleticism involved in cheerleading has increased dramatically. Cheerleading in the United States is a year round competitive activity. Cheerleaders are asked to perform through 3 seasons, peak for national competitions, and attend cheerleading-training camps in the summer. Cheerleading begins at an early age and is estimated to include over a million participants between elementary school and the professional sports levels. Cheerleading is a kind of sports which combines music and physical activities and usually associates with football and basketball. SooHoo, Sell, and Reel (2005) demonstrated that there were five elements in this sport including stunts, tumbles, dance, cheers, and jumps. However, the origin of cheerleading does not contain so many components. In the 1880’s, a graduate student of Princeton, Thomas Peebles, took the Princeton cheers to the University of Minnesota, where football and fight songs were becoming very popular. After that, the idea spread across the country. In 1898, a medical student of the University of Minnesota named Johnny Campbell assembled a group to energize the team and the crowd with the first organized cheer: This set the stage for cheerleading to begin. In the 1960’s, cheerleaders were shaking pompoms, and doing toe-touch jumps, the splits, and claps to get the crowd to cheer for their team (Muller, 2009; Shields & Smith, 2009). The evolution of cheerleading to a sport was again developed by the University of Minnesota as the women became known for their athletic ability by including gymnastics in their routines. Cheerleading developed more showmanship and became more entertaining, and has evolved from service-oriented cheering on the sideline of o...

... middle of paper ... injuries can be prevented. Not attempting tricks or routines for which everyone is adequately prepared and trained, including the spotters, is important. Mandating adequate floor mats for complex stunts is another important recommendation.
Given the changes in the nature of cheerleading, its popularity, and the injury prevention interventions being undertaken in the sport, it is essential that cheerleading injuries and injury rates be described and risk factors quantified. According to the survey (NFHS, 2010), it indicated that the number of girls’ participation in competitive spirit squads in Florida was 5,226 which ranked 7th in the United States. The purpose of this research is to randomly sample high school cheerleading squads in order to collect and compile selected injury information and to compare this information with previously published literature.

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