Cheer leading is definitely not as easy as some people think. There is a stigma attached to the sport but cheer leaders must be very coordinated, remember lots of routines, shapes, methods and techniques as well as keep their bodies in excellent shape. Cheer leading has evolved immensely over the years from yelling with the team off on the sidelines to a showmanship of gymnastics and other talents. They have become part of the game instead of an addition. Cheerleaders often use different accessories like pom poms and cheer balls in order to customize their routine. Other accessories are often used and the outfits play a big part in making each squad stand out from the others.
Most cheerleader pom poms are made from vinyl and have an endless possibility of color and style. Now you can even have a design printed onto them to make them into custom pom poms. You can also purchase metallic cheer poms as well as plastic pom poms but these are not as popular as the vinyl. Here are a few different types of cheer poms that are commonly used.
These are cheer balls that have a piece of elastic that can be wrapped around the wrist in order to secure the pom to the hand. This is useful when doing dance routines where you need to grasp something else.
These can come in various different styles and colors. Most squads will have two sets of pom poms, one for cheering at regular games and then another set that they will use for competition. Competitions will usually bring out the metallic cheer poms but it is not a requirement.
One of the main things to think about when picking out a pom-pom is the kind of handle that will be beneficial for the squad. Lots of cheerleaders only use the pom-poms when they incorporate traditional movements. For this, the traditional baton handle will be appropriate. But, if the squad uses the pom poms during their dance routines they may want to handle that’s easier to keep a hold of as well as a possible elastic strap to avoid the embarrassment of dropping the pom pom.
How to properly take care of your pom poms
When you first buy a pom pom it will be on fluffed. In order to fluff out a pom, you will need to take small amounts of it in one hand and carefully pull the strands away from each other with the other hand. Every now and again during the process you should shake the pom pom to help separate the strands. Do this until the entire pom is separated and fluffed. This process may need to be repeated regularly, sometimes as often as every time you use them and they will need to be stored properly.
How to properly store your pom pom
If you feel like fluffing your pom pom every single time you use it is excessive then you will want to store them in such a way that they only need a small shake when you take them out. Pom poms with long strands should be hung to prevent the strands from getting wrinkled and folded. Either that or they should be laid out carefully. Pom poms cannot be ironed so once they get crinkled, that’s the end. Pom poms with short strands can also be stored laid out in a box because their length will not be conducive to proper hanging. Short pom poms will probably need to be fluffed every time you take them out of the box but this can be done by shaking them and carefully separating any strands that are stuck together as opposed to separating every single strand. Storage is the same no matter if you are using metallic cheer poms, vinyl or some other type of material, color or style.
Whether you were using metallic cheer poms, plastic pom poms or some other type, you always want to be careful with them and take proper care of them. They receive a lot of abuse and wear and tear being shaken around so often during practice and games and competitions so during their down times they should be allowed to rest and regroup, for lack of a better term.