The History of Cheerleading

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History of Cheer

Cheer, a diverse and dangerous sport is a very foggy subject for many. The majority of the population would say cheer is just a group cheering on a sports team. Before being able to define what cheer is, one must first look at current day competitive cheer. How cheer gained its stereotypes lays in its history, and rapidly evolved into a completely different function. With cheer being the number one cause of sports injury for girls under twenty, twenty thousand deaths from stunting, and seventy percent of girls sports injuries in high school, the statistics raises an eyebrow as to just what cheerleaders are doing. Cheer went from chants, to stunt groups, to worlds championships in just a century.

Cheer was started in America at Princeton University in 1884 by men. The first cheer was put together to cheer on the varsity football team. The cheer went, “Rah, Rah, Ray! Tiger, Tiger, Sis, Sis, Sis! Boom, Boom, Boom! Aaaaah! Princeton, Princeton, Princeton!”, and soon the students on campus formed the "pep club" ( The Cheerleaders). Thomas Peebles, a graduate from Princeton, took the spirit of his pep club to Minnesota University in 1884 and formed a new club. For a rugby game, the pep club created "team yells" which the crowd started joining in on. Johnny Campbell picked up a megaphone and led the crowd in the uproar for the game, thus was the beginning of cheer. As cheer advanced, new skills were added to it such as choreography, tumbling, and stunting. Women were not permitted to be a part of pep clubs. This should not be a surprise; universities had only just started admitting female students at the time. A fight for the right to cheer was hardly supported by women because they lacked so many other right...

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...o go above and beyond their limits, and inspires an uproar from crowds who come to watch them compete.

Works Cited

"History of Cheerleading." Cheer Union Organization. Cheer Union, n.d. Web. 16 Feb 2014. .

Maurer, Tracy Nelson. The Cheerleaders. 1st ed. Vero Beach, Florida: Rourke Publishing LLC, 2006. 4-8. Print.

Maurer, Tracy Nelson. Competitive Cheerleading. 1st ed. Vero Beach, Florida: Rourke Publishing LLC, 2006. Print.

Mozes, Alan. "As Cheerleading Evolves, Injuries Mount." Health.US News. N.p., 28 Jun 2013. Web. 16 Feb 2014. .

Webster, Merriam. Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language. New deluxe ed. San Diego, California: Thunder Bay Press, 2001. 352, 1884. Print.

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