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How to do Cheerleading Stunts

Rashida Khilawala Apr 13, 2020
Cheerleading is one of the most popular forms of gymnastics and athletics. It adds spice to a game. It is a ritual for any team to have a cheerleading squad, to cheer them. However, certain stunts can be dangerous, if not done with right precision and focus. This story lists out instructions for performing cheerleading stunts.
Some celebrities who were high school cheerleaders are Christina Aguilera (North Allegheny Intermediate High School), Sandra Bullock (Washington-Lee High School), Jessica Simpson (Richardson North Junior High School), Reese Witherspoon (Montgomery Bell Academy), Renee Zellweger (Katy High School), Madonna (Rochester Adams High School), and Lindsay Lohan.
Though cheerleading might seem to be a glamorous activity, cheerleading stunts are not a piece of cake. They require precision, focus, agility, and dexterity.
They need to be practiced regularly in order to be mastered. Also, one must always start with stretching and warm up, before practicing or performing these stunts.

Prep or Extension Prep

This is a two leg stunt. In this stunt, the flyer stands on the hands of two bases facing each other. The bases hold the feet of the flyer at collarbone level. The flyer is in control of the stunt. She has the option to move the bases closer together or farther apart by simply moving her legs.


This is also a two leg stunt. In this stunt, the flyer stands with each foot in the hands of a base. Her arms are in an extended overhead position. The back spot can either choose to hold the ankles of the flyer or support the wrists of the bases. In case, it is a single-based stunt, the base can hold the flyer's feet above her head with her arms locked.
Prep and Extension are the most basic stunts. All the advanced stunts (also known as variations) are mostly done on the basis of these two.


In this stunt, one or more bases hold up the flyer by the foot. The flyer balances weight on one straight leg. The flyer's other leg is bent, and the foot is positioned at about the knee level of the flyer, keeping it alongside the standing leg's knee.


This stunt is a variation of the liberty stunt, facing the side. In this stunt, one or more of the bases extend one of the flyer's feet. The flyer's other leg is held by the flyer in her hand to the side, and the leg is fully extended.


In this stunt, the base group faces forward, and holds the foot of the flyer in the side base style. The flyer holds a one-legged extended stunt, while facing 90 degrees sideways from the bases.

Another important aspect of these stunts is transitions, tosses, and dismounts. The most basic one of these is the Basket Toss.

Basket Toss

A basket toss is an advanced stunt. The bases propel the flyer upwards by more than 10-30 feet from loading position. It is a toss by maximum four bases, of a top, straight up in the air, so the flyer can perform a trick like a toe touch, ball-out, kiss-out, pretty girl, twist, tuck, kick twist down or a pike, etc., and then, land back in a cradle position.
The basket is assembled by each one of the bases, grabbing their own right wrist with their left hand, and using their right hand to grab each others' left wrist. The flyer, with some help from the back spot, places her feet on the square created to minimize pressure.
Finally, the bases dip, then stand up, again dip, and then throw using all their power.

There are several variations of the basket toss that you could perform.

Toe Touch Basket Toss

During the basket toss, when the flyer is thrown into the air, she needs to stay in the 'pencil' position. Once she starts to fall, she does the toe-touch jump, quickly pops back into pencil and then, finally into the cradle.

Pretty Girl/Show off

While doing the basket toss, when in the air, the flyer will keep her legs like she would in a liberty stunt, and put one hand on her waist, while she keeps one behind her head while laying down.

X - Out Basket Toss

During the basket toss, the flyer can do a tuck. However, while upside down in the tuck, the flyer needs to perform the jump 'spread eagle'. This will make the body look like an X.

The Dismount

It is a dismount when the flyer falls into the bases' and back's hands, immediately. In the dismount, the flyer's legs are forced into a pike position. This is done by the back spot grabbing hold of the flyer's ankles, and pushing them forward with all of her strength.
At the same time, the two bases whip their hands sideways, which is the opposite direction of the back. This causes the flyer's feet to go in that direction.
It must be noted that these stunts are not simple, and require a lot of practice. Thus, follow all the necessary precautions while practicing and performing these stunts.