The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

Behind the scenes: an inside look at the cheerleading conditioning program


While most students would still be in bed asleep, the Leopard cheer squad is up and running. In addition to their high-flying stunts and peppy cheers, they also have to keep themselves conditioned and in shape for the many games and pep rallies throughout the year, spreading school spirit.

“Every morning, we warm up by running, either around the perimeter of the school, or laps around the gym,” senior cheerleader Lauren Sanders said.  “Then Coach Leary or Petty will lead us in “tabatas”, a short, intensive workout where you do quick repetitions of a workout move in a pattern.”

Cheerleading is an intense workout that requires strength and endurance.   However, this year’s conditioning program is a new thing for the squad.

“I started (conditioning) at the beginning of the year,” cheer coach Sandi Petty said. “When we were in volleyball and football playoff seasons we backed off a little bit because we were preparing for pep rallies and games, but we still did try to keep it going as much as possible.”

The workouts are improving the team’s strength and performance.

“It has definitely made us more in shape,” Sanders said, “Conditioning strengthened our already very strong endurance.”

Though it may seem like this is a positive thing to most people, some cheerleaders aren’t sold on the workouts.

“I think that it sometimes takes away from our ability to rehearse and practice for other things that could be more important,” sophomore cheerleader Lexa Mapes.

Most sports have an off season, but that is not the case for cheer.

“We have been conditioning all year to keep us healthy,” sophomore cheerleader Emily Teague said.

Even those cheerleaders that question the time spent on conditioning can admit there are some positives to working out.

“It’s a good thing that (the coaches) are trying to keep us in shape, and it also sets an example for the shape that we should be in,” Mapes said.

Although some people are surprised by the year-long conditioning program, the cheerleaders think it’s a natural part of being on the squad.

“I don’t see why it’s such a big deal that cheer works out and conditions,” Sanders said.  “We are a sport just like anyone else, and we need to condition and strengthen our muscles just like any other sport.”

View Comments (1)
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Claire Peralta, Staff Reporter
Now that she’s a senior, not much has changed besides the dwindling number of days until her graduation. Claire Peralta is still as awkward and unsure of herself as she was freshman year, but about 2 inches taller. Rarely will you see her without a Diet Coke in hand, because of her undying love for Diet Coke, as showcased in her junior year staff bio. Yes, she knows it’s unhealthy, please don’t inform her of how her stomach is slowly becoming radioactive. She loves odd necklaces, surfing, travelling, and hopes to leave the United States as soon as possible to become the female Rick Steves while learning as many languages as possible. Her favorite color is the absence of color, and has little to no filter. Claire attributes her unique personality to her obsession with James Bond movies and Blink-182 in the 3rd grade. She apologizes in advance if she offends you, she probably didn’t mean to. For questions and inquiries contact: [email protected], or follow her on Twitter @clairemperalta.

Comments (1)

The Red Ledger values the opinion of its readers and encourages them to discuss its content. All comments are subject to approval by The Red Ledger staff. The Red Ledger does not allow anonymous comments and requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments. Comments are reviewed as often as possible. Comments with inappropriate content will not be published. Once submitted, comments become the property of The Red Ledger. To see our full Comment Policy, visit
All The Red Ledger Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • AnonymousFeb 14, 2013 at 4:35 pm

    cheer is not a sport