Published on April 19th, 2014 | by Kim Conley

Team USA Day 5: Full Out Friday

I can officially say that we’ve survived “Full Out Friday!” After learning what our routine consisted of a few days ago, I would have never guessed that today I’d be able to get through it all. There is SO much packed into this routine; I don’t think a single person has more than an eight count of total breathing time! However, our coaches have trained us well so that we are conditioned to pull it off, and make it look simple! As the practices go on, we gain more confidence in our skills. We’ve reached the point where they are becoming second nature and we know what we need to do to make each element hit.

We had a little fun this practice and decided to do a UCA/NCA swap. All of the girls who cheer at UCA schools dressed up as NCA cheerleaders and vise versa. For example, UCA schools are known for wearing Soffe shorts with their t-shirts tucked in and high socks, while NCA cheerleaders are more likely to wear spandex or Nike Pros and their hair in a high ponytail. It was a fun way to start practice and it was humorous seeing everyone dress differently!

At one point during the day, we walked over to Coed practice to encourage and watch them go full out. I was eager to watch them perform because I had not seen very much of their routine. They did an awesome job with only a few mistakes, which is amazing for their first time going full out. I can’t wait for everyone to see this team perform; they know how to put on a show!

After the Coed team performed it was our turn, and we did extremely well! This gave us an opportunity to get more experience performing our routine in front of an audience. The Coed team did a great job cheering us on, which made executing this difficult routine easier. After returning to our practice area and running the routine a few more times, we ran the routine in thirds. Even though we were tired we pushed through and had another successful day!

After practice some of us went to Chili’s for dinner, which was a nice change in atmosphere. While there, I talked to Angela Stilwell, a fourth year on Team USA. I figured that since I talked to some rookies, I couldn’t forget about my fellow vets! She told me that this year is her favorite so far. She feels that our team has become very close in a short amount of time and that we all vibe well together, which I agree with 100%! She also likes how Tony and Savanna are able to mix our stunt groups and positions around and that we are all willing to work together to try new things. She loves the confidence and work ethic that our team has shown; we always come in and work hard to get everything done in a timely manner. Angela plays a huge role in the success of Team USA All Girl. Being on Team USA the past four years is a huge accomplishment, and she has helped to bring this team to where it is today. She is an amazing leader and knows exactly what to say to motivate us each and every practice!

As we returned from Chili’s and were in our rooms hanging out, I could hear screams coming from down the hall. A few girls and I left to see where it was coming from. We found out that Coed has mandatory ice baths, which explained the screams! Taking ice baths after long practices are great for easing sore muscles; it’s pretty much an ice pack for your entire body!

Tomorrow morning we have dance choreography with Hank Light. I’m sure it’s going to be amazing and I can’t wait to learn it!

Thanks for reading!

-Sam Smith

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About the Author

Managing Editor of American Cheerleader Magazine. Former cheerleader at The Ohio State University and UCA Staffer.

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