Cheerleading Team Positions
Cheerleading is a very popular sport in America, and like many other sports, it has designated positions. Cheerleading positions are only useful in cheer routines that require stunts to be performed. Otherwise, a cheerleader’s position is where they have to stand on the mat, court, or field at any time in their routine. In this article, you are going to learn a lot of in-depth information about each role, so that you can be a more educated cheerleader or cheerleading fan.
What are the positions in cheerleading?
The three main positions of cheerleading are the base, back spot, and flyer. Although there are only three main positions in cheer, there are many cheerleaders that take on these positions during a routine; more than one cheerleader on a squad can be a flyer, back spot, or base.
The Base Position
Every stunt, routine, and cheer squad needs a solid base to be successful. The base is who you will see at the bottom of a pyramid or stunt, lifting the flyer up and holding him or her while they are performing their stunts. Bases are usually taller, bigger, and stronger than the other positions since they need to lift, throw, and support the flyer. Bases should get their power from their legs and allow it to travel up to their arms so they can avoid any back or neck injuries from straining themselves. Bases should have great timing to avoid any slips or drops and should always make sure their feet are properly placed and spaced. Most importantly, a base should never drop a flyer!
Types of Bases
- Main Base
- Secondary Base / Side Base
The Backspot Position
The back spot, or spotter, is a very important position that includes many different roles within a cheer routine. Back spots are typically taller in stature and placed in front of or behind the stunt. Throughout the stunt, they are working to help the flyer keep their balance and should be the first to catch the flyer if they fall. The spotter should always know how to properly catch the flyer so they do not injure their head or neck during the fall, since safety should always be their concern. The back spot will also call things out during a stunt or keep the count so each cheerleader can stay on rhythm. While this position is not the face of the routine, they are absolutely vital to each stunt.
Types of Spotters
- Front Spot
- Back Spot
- Additional Spot
The Flyer Position
The flyer is the face of the cheer routine and the person who is working on getting the crowd involved. Flyers are the cheerleaders that are lifted and thrown during various stunts in a routine. They are typically smaller and lighter than the other positions and are usually the most flexible and agile. Along with balance, coordination, and energy, flyers have to have trust in their bases and spotters to catch them so that they are confident in their moves. They must stick to the count for each move and perform their stunts perfectly. A flyer has to perform flips and twists in the air gracefully, land safely, and continue on with their routine. Being the center of the crowd’s attention does not leave much room for mistakes as a flyer!
What is the hardest position in cheerleading?
Many people would argue that the hardest position in cheerleading is the base. Every stunt needs a solid foundation in order to be successful! The bases must have solid footing, solid holds, and be able to catch flyers at any moment during the routine. The bases also need to have incredible timing and be able to perform moves at the same time since their support can prevent injuries or costly mistakes.
What is the best cheerleading position to be?
Most people would argue that the flyer is the best position to be in since they are typically the faces of the squad. Flyers get to perform the eye-catching stunts that fans love during routines. Flyers typically get to interact with the crowd more and show off their skills in the flashiest way. For people who like to be at the center of the crowd’s attention, flyer is the perfect position.
What is a spotter in cheerleading?
A spotter is someone who provides support for the base and the flyer in a cheerleading stunt. A back spot, the most common type of spotter, helps by holding the ankles, calves, or waist of the flyer. A front spot meanwhile is there to help catch the flyer at the end of a particular stunt. In higher-level competition, it is common to have additional spotters, especially when there is only one base.