It doesn’t matter if you are level 1 or level 5—you want better jumps and tumbling. Every all star cheerleader knows what it’s like to go out on that mat and really hit their tumbling and stunt, and most cheerleaders also know what it’s like to be disappointed in what they left on the mat. That’s why we are here today to share the one exercise that will give you an edge over your competition. It’s an exercise that just about everyone does, but no one does it quite the way they should to see the best results.
Regardless of whether you’re a coach or an athlete, you need to know what I’m talking about: squats.
Tumbling and jumps are mostly legs, and the squat is one of the top exercises you can do to give yourself the explosive power you need to hit those tumbling passes and jumps. Squats:
- Boost your leg strength
- Help you jump higher, giving you more time to complete your skills
- Increase hip flexibility
- Engage your core
- Work large muscle groups all at once
When it comes to choosing the top workout for your body, we know it’s the squat. However, athletes and coaches alike have been doing them wrong for as long as we can remember! Read on to learn more about how to more effectively squat, as well as what you can do to strengthen those muscles and minimize injury!
How to Correctly Squat
There’s a common myth that has been floating around saying that you should never squat past 90 degrees at the knee because it’s bad for your knee joints. However, this is not true. A study of two groups of rugby players found that the first group, the group that was told to do full squats instead of partial ones, increased their jump height by 4.6 cm. The second group, doing only partial squats, saw an increase in 3.5 cm.
If you want to start using your squats to give yourself the highest vertical jump possible—and we know all star cheerleaders will—start squatting by bringing your butt as low as possible. Think about touching your hamstring to your calves. Also, stay tight! If you loosen up at the bottom, your knee joints will open and leave you more vulnerable to injury. Finally, EXPLODE as you push back up to stand. Use as many muscle fibers as possible, and you will soon be gaining height over your competitors when it’s time to jump and tumble on the competition floor.
Once your all star cheerleaders master the art of the squat and get some power behind it, you’ll be blown away by how strong and high their jumps and tumbling look. Give your athletes the competitive edge by engaging their muscles the way they should be engaged. We look forward to seeing everything that your team can do on the mat! Sign up for one of WSA Cheer’s competitions today for a chance to prove that your athletes are the best of the best.