Having just finished the last judging assignment of the season, I have a plethora of pet peeves concerning cheerleading routines. Below are a few elements that drive judges batty!
1. Music that sounds like a sound effect montage.The "music" had too many sound effects, and the squad performing could not hit their skills on the sound effects. Not only was the music cacophonous, the squad's timing was never in sync.
2. Coaches who perform the routine (front and center) with the squad. This is distracting to the judges and makes concentration on the routine difficult (or was that the purpose all along!).
3. Coaches who do not study the score sheet. Why incorporate two jumps when three jumps will boost your score by one point? One can only think the coach has not read the score sheet. Remember that score sheets are like report cards--keep them to track your progress.
4. Teams do not hold their last motion/stunt when the routine is over. We see too many squads who jump up and leave the floor before the last echo of the music has faded. Be proud; hold that last motion/skill.
5. Cheerleaders who look bored while performing. This comment has been made by the judges at most competitions I attended this year. Lack of energy, lack of excitement, and boredom--this will be reflected on the team's score sheet.
Do certain elements of squad routines drive you batty? Email your comments and they will appear in next month's newsletter.