We joined the cheer team for a practice to learn more about cheerleading. Photo: Rame Abdelkader/Fulcrum
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 Fulcrum editors on their Gee-Gees cheerleading experience

Last weekend, five Fulcrum editors took part in a collaboration with the Gee-Gees cheerleading team. We were invited to a cheerleading practice where coach Nailah Taylor and her team taught us the basic cheerleading maneuvers. 

It wasn’t all pretty but fun was had by all — here’s what the different editors had to say about their experiences.

Meagan Casalino
Co-News Editor

The Gee-Gee cheerleaders make their routines look easy; they are quick, in-sync and seemingly flawless with great energy at every sporting event I have witnessed.

They may make their routines look easy, but it is anything but. I am a fairly active person who runs and boulders, but I was exhausted after Sunday’s practice and complained about my bruises and sore body the next day. 

It’s not just the physical aspect of the routines; they combine dance and gymnastics in a team effort of trust and timing. I think that after our practice, the Fulcrum team members will work  better together in a less physical way in the newsroom 

I’m looking forward to teaching the other editors how to do a handstand! 

Zoe Mason
Features Editor

I didn’t really have high hopes for myself and I definitely did not surpass them. I am not a terribly athletic person, and I was pretty sure cheerleading looked deceptively easy — it did. I struggled. I thought the dance routines at least would be easy to follow; I was wrong there, too. 

The gymnastics element was just as impressive to watch and just as difficult to try as I thought they would be. I’ll be honest, somewhere between the suicides — ahem, “line touches,” — and the repetitive lifting of Meg, I got a serious workout in! I could feel it Monday morning.

I am horrified that all of my many failures at that practice are on tape. Enjoy them!

Charley Dutil
Sports Editor

I honestly didn’t really know what to expect going in, I’ve played lots of different sports in my youth but I’ve never really done anything similar to cheerleading, this was definitely a new experience for me.

I knew we were in trouble when coach Taylor ordered us to do line touches to start the warmup. I come from a baseball background where I’m more known for my power than my cardio, so that was a rough start. Seeing the other editors struggle as well with the line-touches was a relief.

As for the cheerleading maneuvers, I was lucky enough not to be the flyer and be the third basemen, a.k.a the easiest position, I didn’t drop Meg so I think I did a good job. Handstands were another story for me, as I felt like any momentum I had was stopped by an anchoring weight provided by my stomach. 

But overall, it was definitely a good experience.

Safa Saud
Online Editor

I was nervous walking into the gym with my fellow editors. Having never done cheerleading before, I must say I was thoroughly impressed with the sport, not to mention the very talented Gee-Gees cheerleaders. I too, like my coworkers, thought the sport would be fairly easy but I soon realized it wasn’t.

Breathless right out of the gate in warmups, I realized that it was going to be a brutally long two hours at the gym. But soon after I got the gist of the dance steps (only half-kidding), I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

I think my favourite part of the routine was lifting my co-worker, Meg, only for them to be bruised the next day.

Overall, it was an incredible team bonding experience and I would definitely do it again!

Ryan Pepper
Arts & Culture Editor

It’s a few days later and I’m still sore from our time cheerleading. The athleticism didn’t come as a surprise to me but I had never really thought about the amount of planning, preparation, and memorization that goes into a routine. We learned two dances and I couldn’t keep 16 dance moves straight, let alone an entire routine.

Cheerleaders, like any athletes, make their sport look easy. It’s definitely not. While we all know what most people mean when they say they like watching the cheerleaders, there is honestly so much to watch and be amazed by. We were lucky to get Meg to stand in the air — I can’t even imagine the skill level required to do aerial flips, gymnastic routines, or all the other things elite cheerleaders do.

I also learned that I can maybe do handstands and cartwheels now, which is a nice achievement. Rumour has it coach said I showed the most potential, which is the first time anyone has ever said I did in any sport. All in all, cheerleading was an awesome experience.

For behind-the-scenes footage, follow us on TikTok: @_thefulcrum