Qualities a Cheerleading Captain Needs
Making the cheerleading squad is a proud accomplishment, but becoming the cheer captain is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to lead. Much more is expected of you once you are chosen to be the cheer captain. Every move you make is going to be watched and talked about, so you must embody certain characteristics and qualities that make you an effective leader and good role model.
As a cheer captain, you lead your squad to learn and perform cheers. To be an effective leader, you must instruct others without seeming bossy or rude. You also must be a strong decision-maker because you are in charge of choosing cheers and deciding where your squad is going in the future. As cheer captain, you also are responsible for keeping the peace between your fellow cheerleaders. Be careful not to show favoritism. You absolutely cannot gossip about other students, especially those on your squad.
A cheer captain needs to display a positive attitude, which means that you look for the good in any situation and encourage your fellow cheerleaders to do the same. You should keep a smile on your face and find nice words to say to those around you. Another important part of having a positive attitude is to build up your fellow cheerleaders by constantly encouraging them. When giving constructive criticism, make sure you start by saying something positive.
Rude and inappropriate language is unbecoming of a cheer captain. Speak to your teachers and coach in a respectful way and present yourself in a respectful manner by wearing clothing that adheres to the dress code guidelines of your school. Look for ways to help others inside and outside of your team.
Cheerleaders are responsible for getting the rest of the school excited about the upcoming games and building support for the sports teams. As cheer captain, your job is to build that school spirit in your fellow cheerleaders so they are able to pass it along to others. Consider starting each practice with your school fight song or cheer to get everyone in the mood to work hard for the school. Encourage the cheerleaders to wear their uniform or school colors on game days and ask the other students to as well. Always be on the lookout for ways to build pride in your school, whether you are on campus or off.
- "Go! Fight! Win!: Cheerleading in American Culture"; Mary Ellen Hanson; 1995
- "The Ultimate Guide to Cheerleading: For Cheerleaders and Coaches"; Leslie Wilson; 2003
Sara Ipatenco has taught writing, health and nutrition. She started writing in 2007 and has been published in Teaching Tolerance magazine. Ipatenco holds a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in education, both from the University of Denver.