The day has finally come. As of February 26, 2003 the university of Calgary's power cheerleading team became an official club. With 22 people on the squad including three boys, this team hopes to make an impact in the upcoming year.
Lead by Head Coach Jillian White, these aerobatics athletes hope to inspire the Dinos next season by coming out to most games. They want to raise the school spirit, get the crowds nice and rowdy, and show off what they can do.
Unfortunately, the plans of competing in their own events have been hung up to dry. Due to accidents in the past, restrictions have been put forth by the City of Calgary which inhibit the team from competing.
The biggest upset might be the fact that other teams within the province get to compete and most universities within Canada have competitive teams. Despite there being a chance to compete, the cheerleading team will only get to display their talents at a non-competitive level.
But there have been some ups to the downs. As a club the team will now get some funding from the Students' Union. And if they partake in enough Dinos events, they may get their uniforms subsidized by Dinos Athletics.
"We got our foot in the door," said team member Lise Unich. "We have been trying all year to become a varsity team but at least now we're a club."
The main thing here is the team wants to perform.
"We're pretty entertainting to watch, we're athletic and I think we will bring something good to the school. If anything, I think people will come out to watch--just to see what we are all about"
Though the team is not varsity and cannot book any gym time, they still find time to practice. The problem is--the only place to practice is down in the Gymnastics Centre during open gym time, where anyone is welcome to use the facility, making things a bit distracting for the team.
But with all the practice this team has gotten in over the year they have the basic stunts and dance routines down. Like stunting, this involves basket tosses and aerial acrobatics. Not to mention the pyramids--which I was assured were far from your standard stacking one on top of each other while on your hands and knees. These pyramids are all done standing and interlinking one another in complex positions.
"We always want our strongest people on the base, and the most flexible girls are on top" said Unich. And really--who can argue with that logic.
With things now off to a good start the team is looking toward the future. Next season is just around the corner, and the team hopes to put on more tryouts. The tryouts will be held in early September, two weeks before school starts.