How to Do a Lib in Cheerleading
The liberty cheerleading stunt has become a yardstick by which to measure the ability of a stunt team. It is a one-leg skill, meaning the flyer stands on one leg, requiring strength, balance and skill to execute and hold. The liberty, also known as a lib, forms a foundation for more advanced one-leg stunts, such as the heel stretch, arabesque and scorpion. If a liberty is held below prep level, it is a United States All Star Federation Level One stunt. At prep level, it becomes a Level Two stunt and held at extension, it is Level Three.
Start with bases facing each other, close together, their feet apart to shoulder-width and their knees bent slightly. Bases should keep their backs straight and hold the flyer’s standing foot level with their belly buttons. The base on the side of the flyer’s standing leg places one hand under the flyer’s toe and one under her heel. The other base grips the flyer’s foot by placing one hand under the foot in between the main base’s hands and one on top of the flyer’s foot. The flyer stands slightly behind the bases with her hands on their shoulders and the foot she intends to stand on in her base’s hands. The back spot stands behind the flyer, crouched down, and place one hand on the flyer’s standing leg ankle and the other hand on her opposite thigh, just under her bottom. The front spot stands to the front of the flyer, bracing the flyer’s shin on her standing leg and the main bases wrist.
On count one, the flyer will rise up onto the toes of the foot which is still on the ground. The bases will stay still and anticipate the next count.
On count two, the flyer will bend slightly and the bases will sponge with her to coordinate their timing.
On count three, the flyer will jump off of the ground, bringing her weight centered above her foot as the bases lift her into the air. She will swing her arms up into a high V, lifting her body and holding it in a straight line from head to toe.
On count four, the stunt should hit its height with the bases locking their arms and staying steady beneath the flyer. How high the flyer is lifted will depend on the level of the skill. The bases remain still. The flyer will lift her free-hanging foot to bring the knee up high and the foot close to the knee of her standing leg. She will hold her knee up so that her thigh is parallel to the ground and her foot is alongside of her standing leg knee with her toes pointing down. Her standing leg knee should be locked out and she should tense all of her muscles to remain tight and still.
Bases should hesitate for a second before lifting to allow the flyer to get her hips above her knee. The flyer can hold her foot still and prevent toeing by spreading the toes of her standing foot and touching them to the top inside of her shoe.
Only stunt under the supervision of a certified, insured coach. Always use safety mats when stunting.
An American writer living in the United Kingdom, Christy Mitchinson began writing professionally in 2000, during her career in laboratory science, pathology and research. She has authored training materials, standard operating procedures and patient/clinician information leaflets. Mitchinson is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in English literature and creative writing with The Open University.