This week we meet up with Jasmine L. (’22) and Annie C. (’21), who are part of ISKL’s Cheerleading team!
After being part of the High School (HS) musical ‘Bring It On’ in 2019, Jasmine, Hannah, and friends, decided to start a cheer team for ISKL, both having done Cheerleading when they lived in the USA.
Here are their stories.
Annie C. (’21)
“Looking through old yearbooks, I found out that ISKL used to have a cheer team back in the 1980s, so I thought it would be nice to bring this back to our school! Having seen the enthusiasm we witnessed for the ‘Bring It On’ musical, we felt that the student body would enjoy seeing more cheerleading performances.
‘We currently have 11 people who signed up for our Cheerleading club (including us three), and a majority of the people were also involved in the musical. We have around three male students in the club, but we want to encourage more to join. It would also give us more chances to do partner stunting – where one male and one female perform skills placing the female in an elevated position off the ground!
‘Many people don’t realize that Cheerleading is much more challenging than they think and definitely should be appreciated more! Cheer has its specific genre for routines and is somewhat like a mix of songs and sound effects. It is a perfect way to bring more energy and school spirit to sports events, pep rallies, or even IASAS!
‘We haven’t progressed much in practicing this year due to COVID-19, as Cheerleading is a contact sport. However, we have been thinking about songs and stunts we could use for routines and performing pep rallies. Cheer practices are enjoyable, and it’s also a lovely chance to bond with everyone.”
What does Be All You Are” mean to you?
“I think the phrase is telling us to be ourselves and be proud of it. It also encourages us to accomplish things we want to do and not be afraid. Since many young people struggle with their identity, I think it conveys how important it is to stay true to oneself.”
Jasmine L. (’22)
“ISKL needs a Cheerleading team because there is very little to no school spirit at pep rallies and other gatherings. We saw how much people loved Cheerleading and how much people wanted to join and try it out. ‘There is a routine from the American Cheer Athletics Senior Large All Girl 6 division team “Panthers.” I like this routine because of ‘girl power!’ The music was fantastic, and also because the team name fits ISKL very well.
‘Growing up, I loved sports and had naturally been drawn towards activities like gymnastics. I did gymnastics for about four years, and I got to level five before taking two years off because of a back injury. When I started again from the same level, I injured my back again because I was still in pretty bad shape from my initial injury and because I hurt it while practicing a twist full (a type of skill). So I dropped gymnastics entirely and moved on to Cheerleading, which I’ve always wanted to do since I was a little girl!
‘Currently, our members are all from the musical from last year who did stunting for Truman, one of the schools featured in “Bring it On.” On top of that, we got a list of an additional 15 people who signed up at the club fair.
‘I’m not sure if this will come as a surprise, but Cheerleading has evolved so much from being all about waving pom-poms in the air and looking pretty. Cheerleading is physically, emotionally, and mentally taxing. Still, everything is worth it in the end, and the people you work with on your team and stunt group become somewhat of a second family. They become some of the closest friends you’ll ever make!
‘We haven’t had any official practices yet this year due to the lockdown and the SOPs in place, but I can tell you from past experiences and preparing for the musical last year, it’s a lot of fun. You get the right balance of some scares, funny moments, and just incredible jaw-dropping moments, like when you’re practicing for a new skill. There are some pretty scary falls for the flyer and anyone who watches it – but when you finally get it right, that is the best feeling!”
What does Be All You Are” mean to you?
“‘Be all you are’ means that, even though you might not be the best at everything, there’s always something special that you have within yourself that will help guide you through life with the skillset that you have been given. Nothing artificial, just be yourself.”
Do you know a student, faculty, staff, or alumni with a story to tell? Nominate them to be featured in our Panthers of ISKL stories by sending in your submissions to [email protected]!