≡ Menu

What to Eat and Avoid as a Jacksonville Cheerleading Athlete

We have always stressed the importance of a healthy and balanced diet for a Jacksonville cheerleading athlete. But what exactly does that mean? Plenty of commercials and ads throw that around as a buzzword, but they never explain exactly what a balanced diet looks like.

Some people mistakenly believe that a good diet means eating only vegetables, and no fat and carbohydrates. A lot of people have been led to believe that the only kind of food you should be eating on a balanced diet is raw vegetables, and not much else.

It’s important that you maintain a healthy diet of carbohydrates, proteins, and yes, even fats. We’ll be breaking down these different types of nutrients and what it means to incorporate these into your diet.

Carbohydrates

The Good

A lot of people think that carbohydrates are bad, and that you shouldn’t be eating too much of these. Carbohydrates are an excellent source of energy, which it why athletes are very diligent in incorporating complex carbohydrates into their diets.

Good sources of complex carbohydrates include: whole grains, potatoes, breads, and beans. Plenty of fruits and vegetables have complex carbohydrates in them as well, which is why it’s a good idea to eat plenty of these regularly.

The Bad

Simple carbohydrates are commonly found in processed food. Cookies, cakes, soda, and other types of junk food are common sources of simple carbohydrates and sugar. These are bad for you because of the high amount of sugar found in these, which don’t add anything, nutrient-wise to your diet. All they do is give you a sugar high, and are quickly digested by the body.

Protein

The Good

Protein helps your body repair its muscles. As much as possible eat lean forms of protein to get the most out of it. Proteins like chicken, fish, and tofu are all excellent sources of lean protein that you can incorporate into your diet.

The Bad

Avoid eating too much fatty proteins like beef and pork, as these are usually very heavy, and you usually end up feeling too heavy afterwards.

Fats

The Good

Despite what years of advertising has been telling you, the right kind and amount of protein is a very healthy incorporation into a good diet. These healthy fast are called polyunsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats. They’re great for helping with heart health, and good sources for these can be found in salmon, nuts, olive oil, and avocados.

The Bad

Saturated and trans fats are the kinds of fats that you should minimize when incorporating this into you diet. Too much of these can raise your cholesterol levels and are bad for your heart. These are commonly found in eggs, dairy products, and fried foods, so minimize your intake of these when practicing for your Jacksonville cheerleading.

{ 0 comments }

Jacksonville Cheerleading 101: Eating Before, During, and After Practice

Jacksonville cheerleading is one of the more physically demanding sports out there. Physical strength isn’t only important, but flexibility, stamina, and endurance are all equally as important. Cheerleaders undergo very rigorous training and drills just to get to the level of physical ability that they perform with.

In addition to excellent physical training, it’s highly recommended that a cheerleader eat the right kind of food to make sure that their bodies get the right number and right kind of nutrients to balance out their physically active lifestyle. While fast food is great for the athlete on-the-go, you shouldn’t be sacrificing health for convenience.

As long as you plan your meals accordingly, then you shouldn’t have to worry about taking too much time to prep your food ahead of time. Here are some tips for proper nutrition before, during, and after practice.

Before

Never, ever go to cheerleading practice on an empty stomach. That’s the fastest way to pass out from too much physical activity and not enough nourishment. Make sure you drink plenty of water before practice, and avoid sugary drinks like soda and artificial fruit juice.

Don’t leave too much time between eating and practice, and don’t eat your meals too close before practice time either. Eat healthy carbohydrates like pasta, raw vegetables, and fruits. These digest easily, and keep you well energized. Avoid fried foods and dairy products as these can leave you feeling sluggish.

During

Keep yourself constantly hydrated throughout the duration of practice. Always make it a habit to bring plenty of water with you. Because you don’t really have to eat during practice, a very light snack will suffice. Some fruit or nuts will do as a mid-practice snack. There’s no need to eat anything too heavy if you’ve eaten properly before practice. Again, avoid sugary food or drinks, no matter how little time you have for your breaks.

After

Again, always keep yourself adequately hydrated even after practice. Eat healthy carbohydrates with some protein to refuel your body after a strenuous workout. Make sure that you’re eating a balanced meal, and avoid eating too much processed food, especially junk food or fast food.

Plenty of healthy meals can be prepared and packed the night before practice. In the days leading up to the Jacksonville cheerleading competition, it’s very important that you eat plenty of food with good nutrition to make sure that you’re performing at your best during competition day. Eating the wrong kind of food can hurt your performance by making you feel sluggish and tired all the time.

{ 0 comments }

Making Friends at Jacksonville Cheerleading Camp

The beginning of the summer season can mean a lot of things for a Jacksonville cheerleading athlete. For some, it means that it’s finally the end of the cheer season, which means that they can take a well-deserved break. For others, it’s the end of their cheerleading season, and they’re not sure if they’ll be continuing the next season, which is a bittersweet event for them.

For others, especially those who are beginning their cheer career, they may be gearing up for cheer camp for the first time ever. They may be feeling excited and nervous at the same time. Cheer camp is something that every cheerleader has to go through at least once in their cheer careers. It is an experience that teaches you more about cheerleading, and prepares you well for the physical and mental rigours of a cheerleader’s schedule.

It is also a great way to meet new people from all over the country who are just as passionate about cheerleading as you are. While you’ll be participating in cheer camp with your own team, you shouldn’t hold yourself back from meeting other cheerleaders at the camp. Here are some tips that you can keep in mind to help you make friends during cheer camp.

Friendly Rivalries are Healthy, But Don’t Let it Get Out of Hand

As we’ve mentioned, you’ll be meeting cheerleaders from all across the country, which means that you may be meeting cheerleaders that you might be competing against in the future. As athletes, you may be naturally competitive, and that’s okay, as long as you don’t allow it to get too out of hand. Don’t resort to insults and petty rivalries, use the friendly competition to help each other by providing useful tips and helping out each other.

Help Each Other

Again, always lend a helping hand. You’re all passionate about cheerleading, so this should be something that you should all be enjoying together. Help each other out, no matter what team they’re from. Once everyone understand that everyone is there to learn more about cheerleading, you should all be on the fast track to being friends.

A Positive Attitude

Always keep a positive attitude at Jacksonville cheerleading camp. Your positive attitude can help lift up others’ spirits, and naturally draw people to you. Even if you’re all exhausted from the drills, or frustrated because of a difficult stunt, maintaining a positive attitude in the face of everything can help you all push forward.

{ 0 comments }

Saying Goodbye to Your Jacksonville Cheerleading Team

The end of any Jacksonville cheerleading season is something that cheerleader dread and look forward to at the same time. They look forward to this because the end of the season usually signals the beginning of summer, which is always great. However, this also means that it’s time to say goodbye to your cheer squad. While you may have the chance to cheer with them, this isn’t always the case.

Some cheerleaders may be graduating. Others might choose not to join the squad next year. There may even be some cheerleaders who are attending a different school next year, which means they might be cheering with another team. The end of a season always signals the end of that particular unique team, which is why goodbye is always hard.

These are the people who have stayed with you through the good times and the bad, and you consider them family. However, the end of the year will always come, and goodbyes will have to be said. Here are some things to help you say goodbye to your team.

Do Something Awesome Together

One of the best ways to get rid of the end-of-season blues is to do one awesome thing together as one team. Go out to the beach together as a team, after all, it’s summer! Or you can have a weekend long sleepover. No matter what you decide to do, you need to remember that just because you might not be cheering together anymore, it doesn’t mean that you can’t still be friends.

You can still all hang out over the summer, or even at school. Being cheerleaders together isn’t the only thing that you all have in common. Find other interests in each other outside of cheerleading, and you’ll definitely have friends that’ll last you for life.

Your Coach is Part of the Team, Too

Don’t forget about your coach. You don’t know if they might be coming back for the next season or not, or if you’’ll be a part of the season next year or not. Sure, they may have been your harshest critic, and those practice drills were brutal, but you know that they always had all of your best interests at heart too. Everything that cheerleading has shaped you into, your coach played a first-hand role in making that happen, and they deserve your gratitude.

This Isn’t the End

While there’s a lot of emotions running high, and it seems like the end, remember that every end always signals a new beginning. Even if you have to say goodbye to you Jacksonville cheerleading team, there’s always something new waiting for you. Whether it’s college, a new school, or a new cheer season, always use your past experiences to help you pave your way for the bright future ahead of you.

{ 0 comments }

How Jacksonville Cheerleading Coaches Maintain Team Positivity

Being a Jacksonville cheerleading coach is never an easy task. There are so many responsibilities and duties that a cheer coach has to stay on top of. A cheerleading coach not only has to train and coach the team on their cheer routines, but they are also the ones who have to look out for the cheerleaders during meets, help mediate between any conflict that may arise between cheerleaders, and be there as emotional support for the cheerleaders as well.

In addition to these responsibilities, coaches also have to field any parents who come up to them and demand why their child didn’t make the cheer squad or why they weren’t given the position that their child really wanted. They also have to handle the financial responsibility of managing the cheer squad finances, hoping that the school’s budget can cover everything that they’ll need for the season, as well as help organize fundraisers if the budget is lacking. It is difficult, being a cheer coach, and sometimes it can be a thankless job.

However, nothing makes a cheer coach happier than seeing their cheerleaders up there, cheering their lungs out, and having the time of their lives. One of the biggest responsibilities that a cheer coach has to handle is making sure that the cheerleaders keep up their spirits and morale to help prevent burnout. Here are some ways that cheer coaches maintain team positivity.

Communication

Communication should always be the number one priority for any team. Promoting open communication guarantees that nobody holds any secret resentments against each other, and promotes the mentality that nobody will be judged for how they feel. Pushing emotions down can create tension and conflict between athletes, so a good coach helps keep a positive attitude throughout the entire team by encouraging a more open communication between team members.

Motivates the team

While it may be difficult to keep their spirits up while the cheer meet looks bleak, a cheerleader’s best cheerleader will always be their cheer coach. Even when the team is feeling down, a coach will always be there to motivate them to get back on their feet.

Makes sure that the team enjoys themselves

Overall, a good Jacksonville cheerleading coach knows how to remind their team to have fun with cheerleading. Cheerleading is a team sport, and a coach encourages their team to have as much fun as they can while they’re performing out there. A good coach can switch things up during practice, or take a fun day for the team to go out, and this helps with team bonding, as well as boosts team morale.

{ 0 comments }

Expenses That Jacksonville Cheerleading Parents Have to Consider

Your child tells you that they want to try out for Jacksonville cheerleading, and being the great parent that you are, you support their decision wholeheartedly. So while they’re practicing their basic stunts and jumps, you’re on the sidelines, cheering them on and welcoming them home after a long day of practice. Finally, the day for tryouts is here, and the both of you are nervous with anticipation. Your child comes home from tryouts, and you frantically search their face for any sign of how the tryouts had gone.

Fortunately, your child brings great news. They got in! You prepare a healthy snack for them, while their chatter away and tell you about everything that happened during the tryouts, and what’s next for your budding cheerleader. Suddenly, you are struck by a thought. How much is everything going to cost?

You’re happy for your child, but you know that cheerleading is like any other school sport, and expenses are going to have to be considered. There’s gear, equipment, uniforms, etc. and you’re not entirely sure where to start. If this describes your situation, here is a basic rundown of what expenses have to be considered for cheerleading.

Gear

First and foremost, gear will have to be one of the first expenses that you have to prepare for. While cheer uniforms are only the tip of the iceberg, there are other clothing-related expenses that you have to anticipate. These range from practice gear, which includes cheer shorts and shoes which are specially designed to handle the impact and strain that an athlete will need during training, to accessories that a cheerleader will need for competitions and meets, like bows, poms, makeup, hair accessories, and the like.

Training

Training is also be another expense that cheer parents will have to cover, but rarely anticipate. While training can be taken care of at school, cheerleaders often have to cover registration fees when they join the team for the school year. If they lack expertise in certain areas, they may have to take extra classes to help them catch up with the rest of the team. Competitive cheer includes other additional fees, as fees include the cost of enrolling at the gym where they have to train.

Misc fees

While the above mentioned are the basics of a Jacksonville cheerleading athlete’s expenses, there may be other miscellaneous fees that have to be covered. These may include: cheer camp, transportation fees to and from competitions, and “spirit” fees, among others.

{ 0 comments }

How Coaches Help Their Jacksonville Cheerleading Team Get Along

Being a part of a Jacksonville cheerleading team is very much like being a part of a family. This is why difficult cheerleading routines can be pulled off with no problems by teams that get along very well with each other. You need to have a very strong sense of trust and camaraderie with each other in order to pull off stunts that involve that level of technical difficulty. However, like any family, disputes and disagreements are bound to happen.

You don’t get to a close family unit without hitting a few bumps along the way. If your team isn’t getting along, then there’s nothing to worry about. At the end of the day, families still care about one another, and any disagreements can be easily handled. Here are just some of the ways that a good coach can help their team get back on track.

Communication will always be a good first step

Communication should always be one of the first things that you should enforce within a team in order to establish a good sense of camaraderie. It’s very important for team member to know that open communication is welcome, and that everybody is free to open up and talk to each other.

This helps encourage a mentality that it’s okay to open up and talk to them about any concerns and problems that they may have without any consequences. Open communication is a very important aspect of any good team, and it’s an integral first step in getting your team to resolve their inter-team issues.

Team-building activities

Team-building exercises are a fun and creative way to build up team spirit and give them a chance to build up trust and camaraderie among each other. Team-building activities can take the form of outdoor team activities, like camping, or a regular weekly thing, like team dinners and regular outings.

It’s very easy for young people to get along with each other, as long as they have something in common. This also gives them a welcome break from the rigorous training and drills, which will help reduce the risk of your athletes from burning out.

Don’t give them the opportunity to accuse each other

In line with open communication, while it is healthy for your athletes to voice out their concerns and any issues they may have, you should promote constructive criticism, and not accusations. Constructive criticism is healthy, while accusing one another doesn’t solve anything. It’s important to help your Jacksonville cheerleading athletes understand that distinction.

{ 0 comments }

Helping Jacksonville Cheerleading Athletes Handle Burnout

Burnout in athletes, not just in Jacksonville cheerleading, but in all types of sports, is unfortunately a very common thing. It can be caused by a number of factors, ranging from difficulty in balancing sports and academics, to being pressured by their peers and parents to push themselves harder.

Burnout is defined as emotional and physical exhaustion. Burnout in teenagers and children can be a dangerous thing for them. This is because of the fact that not only does burnout cause emotional distress, constant exposure to this can result in serious health issues in the future.

Burnout should be identified and handled properly. In cheerleading, burnout is not seen as a fault on either the coach or the athletes themselves, it is simply a result of monotonous activity, as well as any external pressures that they may be facing. Fortunately, it is possible to counter burnout for cheerleaders.

Changing things up

One of the causes of cheerleading burnout is the monotony of practice. It seems like it’s much more fun at the beginning, when the routine and drills are still new and exciting, but after mastering everything, it might feel tedious running the same drills and practice routines day after day.

To help fight that monotony, try having the team try a different routine one day, or changing up the drills once in awhile. It helps to include team bonding exercise nearing the end of practice to help the squad support one another.

Open communication can really help

Burnout can feel very frustrating for the person who is experiencing it, to the point where they may feel closed off because it’s difficult for them to express how they feel. Communication is a very important way to help deal with this.

Giving cheerleaders the ability to open up more freely about how they’re feeling to their peers, coach, parents, or teachers can make them feel better and help them understand that what they’re feeling isn’t something that they have to deal with on their own.

Allow the athletes unleash their creativity

Another way to break up the monotony is by trying something creative once in awhile during practice. You can hold a little contest among the cheerleaders to promote a little competitiveness and bring out their creative side. It can be a contest for the best cheerleading uniform theme, or the most creative dance routine. Make it a regular thing, so that the Jacksonville cheerleading athletes have something to look forward to, which should help significantly in reducing burnout.

{ 0 comments }

Signs You’re Too Sick for Jacksonville Cheerleading Practice

Jacksonville cheerleading is so much more than just a sport to you, it’s practically a lifestyle for you. You spend your free time checking out cheerleading videos, and staying up to date on the latest cheerleading news. You enjoy all the aspects of training, no matter how exhausting it can get.

So if you get sick, it can be pretty hard for you to tear yourself away from cheerleading in the span of time that it will take for you to recover. You’d be perfectly happy staying home to rest and then coming in for practice in the afternoon, but schools don’t usually allow that.

So if you want to attend practice, you need to brave the waters of school while sick just to be capable of attending cheer practice. While your dedication is admirable, you really need to keep your health in check, and forcing yourself to go to school and then practice can be pretty hard on your body when all it wants to do is bury itself in a mountain of blankets. If you think you’re still well enough to cheer, then here are some signs that you might be too sick for training and should get some rest.

You simply don’t have the energy in you

If walking down the hall feels like running a 10k marathon, then your body is trying to tell you something. If it’s too hard for you to walk, it’ll be even more difficult for you at cheerleading practice. When you come down with something like the flu, your body is usually too exhausted fighting off the sickness to direct its energy towards anything else.

Even if you say that you’re fine, you have to remember that you’ll be executing stunts that require a lot of mental and physical energy, two things that you are in dire shortage of, and you risk placing your teammates in danger. So go home, rest up, and take some medicine. Your body will thank you for it.

Your symptoms like vomiting or chills are too much to ignore

Some symptoms like a cold are easy enough to ignore, as long as they’re not accompanied by anything more serious, like a fever. Sure, you might be a little drippy in the nasal area, but with a regular head cold, you’re usually well enough to carry out typical activities, including cheerleading. However, if you’re having severe symptoms that make it difficult to focus on anything else, like nausea and chills, then you should definitely take a well-deserved break.

Your sickness is contagious

This is one of the most indicators that you should stay home and rest, instead of pushing yourself to attend your Jacksonville cheerleading practices. If you risk spreading your sickness to other members of your team, then you should definitely stay home instead of risking having your entire team out sick during the competition season

{ 0 comments }

Setting Jacksonville Cheerleading Goals for Yourself This Summer

Summer is a fantastic time to relax and rewind after a school year filled with the stresses of school and Jacksonville cheerleading. You don’t have to worry about deadlines, there’s no homework to be done, and you can spend as much time as you want with your friends over the summer. For cheerleading athletes, they usually take the summer season to work on areas of their cheerleading technique to make sure that they’re improved and in tiptop condition when the cheerleading season comes around again.

Summer can be seen as a great time to work on areas that you feel like you’re lacking in, as well as maintaining a fitness regime to guarantee that you’re in great condition next season. To help you with this, here are some goals that you can set for yourself to make sure that you’re in great condition during the next cheerleading season.

Mastering a new stunt

During the regular season, it may be difficult to focus all of your energy on practicing a stunt or jump that you really want to master, because you have to focus on training for the next round of competition meets and cheer events. During the summer however, you have all the free time that you’ll need to make perfect the stunts that you had your eye on.

One way to help you figure out what areas you might be lacking in and need improvement in is by taping one of your performances and reviewing it afterwards. It can be pretty easy to spot what areas you need work in, and focus on those in order to really up your game. Keep filming as you progress, so that you can really see the difference at the end of the summer.

Figure out what you want to accomplish during the next season

When setting goals for yourself, one of the most important steps to carry out is fleshing out your objectives and goals for the next season. Perhaps you want to be moved to a different position, but your skills aren’t quite there yet. So you can spend the summer working on that to help make sure that you can accomplish that during the next season. It doesn’t even have to be cheerleading related goals either, you can set goals for yourself to improve yourself as a whole.

You might be thinking of setting health and fitness goals, or even goals to open yourself up even more to your squad mates. You might even set yourself the goal of wanting to be more responsive to constructive criticism. Remember that these goals are meant to improve yourself both in Jacksonville cheerleading and outside of it.

{ 0 comments }

Copyright ©2014. Central Florida Athletics. All Rights Reserved.

Lakeland Web Design by BrightSky Web Design