Quitting Competitive Cheerleading


Makiah Parris, Staff Reporter

At age 10 I decided I wanted to do competitive cheerleading. I joined Stuntz Academy located in Pueblo, Colorado. Competitive cheerleading is one, out of many sports, I favor the most. It always encouraged me to try my best, and work hard for my teammates, my coaches, and myself. The extreme physical activity kept me in shape and not only helped me improve in cheer but also other sports as well. I received many learning opportunities and the experience to connect with my team and compete in different states. After five years of doing competitive cheerleading, my family relocated to Salida. I later had to make the decision to quit due to distance.  Although, I knew I couldn’t quit being involved in physical sports. I loved the physical activity so I decided to join and get involved in basketball, soccer, and volleyball. Quitting cheerleading was absolutely devastating to me, but I soon realized that it opened up more opportunities and allowed me to test different skills and meet new people.

Traveling was one of my favorite parts of doing competitive cheer. I created lifelong memories and was proud of what I was able to accomplish. When I found out we were moving I was heartbroken, I didn’t want to let go of being able to see my friends everyday at the gym and competing for a D2 summit bid, the opportunity to win one of the most coveted National Champion titles in the sport of cheerleading. Moving to Salida from Pueblo didn’t really give me an option to continue cheer because there wasn’t a gym. I was really devastated that I couldn´t be with my team, winning competitions and being there with them to celebrate. I wanted to be there with them to share memories and push ourselves to try new skills.

I decided to take this as a huge opportunity to venture out and find new hobbies, which I did. I absolutely love basketball and I love being able to continue doing volleyball and soccer. I’m excited to get more comfortable with these sports and really learn the game.

I will always miss the extreme physical activity and the constant driving of my coaches. I fell in love with the sports I play now and strive to improve in each one as much as possible. Cheerleading always brought out the competitive side of me and now I get to use it with different activities. If I didn’t quit cheerleading I wouldn’t have been able to find new hobbies or discover new skills. Although I do miss being able to receive medals and jackets, I’m glad I was able to try something new.