How to stay competition ready even during the offseason
Cheer season is stressful. Most likely, you practice 4-6 days a week—repeating the same exercises every day. Your muscles are exhausted, and your brain turns to mush from doing the same drills over and over.
All this work pays off during the season where your performance reaches peak capacity.
But after you’ve worked so hard for months on end, it’s important to remember that what you do during the offseason is almost as essential as training during the season.
Most teams start their season with physical conditioning. But the longer you spend training your body, the less time you can spend practicing drills and coordinating with your teammates. So, if you’ve kept yourself in peak condition, you’re that much closer to getting a head start towards competition-ready.
Offseason training tips for Cheerleaders
If you’re ready to maintain a healthy mind and physique over the offseason, try following some of these tried-and-true tips.
Take some time off
This may seem like lazy advice, but it’s crucial for your long-term health. Taking 2-4 weeks off lets your body and mind relax from the season’s intensity. And if you have any injuries or aches from the season, rest speeds recovery. Pushing an injury only makes the problem worse and can lead to stress injuries on the rest of your body. During the first half of your break, stretch, but don’t push your body beyond that. For the remaining half, resume light exercises if you’re completely healed.
After your post-season break, it’s important to get back into the swing of things. Much of the strength you build over six weeks can be lost in one week. Flexibility and endurance require similar dedication—schedule consistent stretching and workouts to maintain long-term gains.
Eat a balanced diet
It’s easy to slip on your diet when you’re in the offseason. After all, can’t you burn fat quickly when you get back to the swing of things? This is true for about 5% of your target weight, but be careful beyond that. The weight you gain during the offseason can put unnecessary strain on your body during pre-season conditioning. It’s also easier to build good eating habits during the offseason when you are less stressed. If you’ve consistently practiced healthy eating habits during the offseason, you’ll likely find maintaining them during the season is second nature.
Attend cheer camp
Nothing says dedication like spending part of your offseason training with motivated peers. Cheer camp gives you skills your regular coach doesn’t. Different trainers have different training methods. Experiment with a few other techniques to find the ones that work best for you. You’ll discover many of your fellow camp goers have valuable tips and tricks as well.
Try something new
If you’ve been practicing a lot at one sport, you may be experiencing mental burnout. Seeing the same people in the same uniforms do the same exercises over and over wears out your brain. But don’t worry! You can get a mental break and keep in top shape. Sports such as tennis, volleyball, basketball, dance, and track build many of the same muscle groups as cheer.
Bond with your teammates
This may seem obvious, but have you considered how important your teammates are? Cheer is a team sport. The more advanced routines have you flipping into your teammates’ hands. And even the most basic numbers need coordination for the best effect. Spend offseason time with your teammates in and out of practice. Doing so will create trust and make training with them more fun!
Ready for some cheer apparel to get you ready for next season? At Prodigy Cheer Apparel, we provide banners, t-shirts, uniforms, and more to complement your unique style. Looking for cheer tips and tricks? Our blog gives you the advice you need to improve your cheer performance.
1. Rest your body to heal for the coming season.
2. Make sure you maintain a healthy diet and keep exercising.
3. Keep loving cheer by varying up your exercises.
4. Strengthen your bond with your teammates through group activities.