All-Star Heartbreak

Two Allstar cheerleading teams,  World Cup and Maryland Twisters, are among some of the best competitive cheer gyms in the world.

Varsity TV

Two Allstar cheerleading teams, World Cup and Maryland Twisters, are among some of the best competitive cheer gyms in the world.

Annie Ryan, Entertainment Editor

   You flip, you jump, you tumble, you dance. What a lot of people don’t understand is the amount of time, patience, effort and mental capacity that participating in all-star cheer really takes. 

   But what affects you the most, in my opinion, is your coaches. I’ve cheered just about every year for an 11-month-long season from May to April since I was about 7 years old. I’ve met a lot of people, I’ve had teammates and coaches come and go, and you always wonder what happens to them. At least I do. 

   When I was 7, I had a tumbling coach that I’ll refer to as “M.” M was funny, witty and always pushed us to be the best we could be. We trusted him. He was a very important adult in our lives as children. But when we returned for our second season at Dynamite Allstars, he had disappeared. We were told, “M went to another gym” and things along those lines. This wasn’t uncommon because coaches typically just go where they’re needed most, and we just assumed we didn’t need him at the gym anymore. As I got older I found that there was more to the story. M was arrested for inappropriately touching children, and as young cheerleaders that used to be coached by him, we were confused and our hearts hurt. Many of my coaches have come and gone due to allegations, and it’s never easy thinking, “I wonder where these people went?” Then, you find out the truth behind their absences.

   As well as growing up in this gym that I called my second home for 6 years, we had the opportunity to meet many “cheerlebrities” AKA cheer celebrities. One of the most looked up to was Robert Scianna. Scianna came to our gym to condition us, do camps with us, and even choreograph our routines. Scianna was recently arrested for soliciting pictures and taking indecent liberties with a child. Personally, my heart was shattered. I had looked up to Scianna my entire cheer career, and I found it beyond disturbing that someone who we had adored could have done those things. 

   As an Allstar cheerleader, you get your heart broken. It breaks when your team loses by 0.1, it breaks when your team separates the next season, and it breaks when your coaches leave and you never get an explanation. To know so many people and have looked up to these people who can do these things and be convicted of them, gradually and continuously ruins your hopes for a better future in the cheer gym.