As UGG boots and hot chocolate return for winter, cheer squads are making a return as well – to the basketball court! As you know, cheering at basketball games is much different than cheering from the football sidelines. At football games, the players and fans are further away and separated by barriers. Basketball season, on the other hand, is up close and personal! When the game tips off, it’s time to rally your team and energize the crowd. Make your season a slam dunk with the following tips.
Interact with the Crowd
The intimate environment at basketball games might be intimidating at first, but think of it as an opportunity to reach more fans. Hand your poms to the little girl in the bleachers, give your student section signs to hold up, or high five fans as you walk on and off the court. Want to score big? Toss out candy or t-shirts during timeouts or between quarters.
Prop It Like It’s Hot
Use poms, signs, megaphones and flags to enhance the game day experience. Utilize these props to lead the crowd and get them up on their feet, cheering with you. Make sure all of your signs are easy to read so everyone knows exactly what to yell.
Basketball season is all about cheers, chants and props, so now is the time to perfect your motion technique. Dedicate practice time to ensure that everyone’s motions are sharp and synchronized. A team that is sharp and in sync will catch the crowd’s eye.
Get Your Head in the Game
It’s crucial that your squad understands the fundamentals of the game. In basketball, possessions change quickly. Be aware of who has the ball, as you will have to change from offense to defense in the middle of a chant. Keep your eye on the ball – literally and figuratively.
During basketball games, it’s as important as ever to show off your smile since you’re so close to the crowd. Even if you think that no one is looking, someone in the stands is always watching. Keep the enthusiasm high and your smile bright!
You’re All in This Together
It’s always exciting when your team comes away with the W. Sometimes, though, the best bonding experiences come not from winning but losing. Celebrate the successes, but when the scoreboard doesn’t have your team on top, stand by your school, your colors and your teammates. It will make the victories that much sweeter.
2-4-6-8, Make Sure You Articulate
The echo of the gymnasium makes for an authentic basketball experience, but it can also make it difficult for the crowd to hear your chants. Speak loudly and clearly with your chin up. Enunciate each word so that it’s easy for fans follow along and join in. Remember: when you cheer, make it clear!
Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My
Who doesn’t love mascots? We’ve all experienced the energy that mascots bring to a game. Fans want to take pictures with them and children want to hug them. Incorporate these crowd favorites into your game day routines. Give them poms and signs to help lead the crowd. Teach them the motions to your best cheers and chants. Escort them into the stands to build excitement and rally school spirit. You can never underestimate the magic of the mascot.