THE Inspire Allstars senior cheerleading team from Tonbridge produced a dazzling display to be crowned champions in their category at the Future Cheer southern regional competition held this month.
The Wild Spirit squad topped the standings in the Senior Level Two competition at the Spotlight Showdown in Maldon, Essex on March 10.
They are one of five competitive Inspire Allstars teams who train at Weald of Kent Grammar School, where the programme also hosts recreational classes.
The programme has roughly 70 athletes regularly participating, aged seven to 21. Wild Spirit has 23 athletes aged 12 and above.
Inspire’s Head Coach, Joey Cuthbert, said: “We are so thrilled for the girls. The hard work certainly paid off.
“The competition was extremely high and the girls were really nervous, so to perform such a flawless routine and take first place is a real achievement.”
Inspire Allstars was started four years ago by Ms Cuthbert, who had been coaching cheerleading in London for almost ten years. She also manages one of six national teams and her squad brought home one of the two golds that England won at the World Cheerleading Championships in the United States last year.
All Star cheerleading is a fast-paced, multidisciplinary sport that combines elements of gymnastics, dance and athletics in routines that last two and a half minutes.
Ms Cuthbert added: “It is a physically challenging, high-energy sport that combines jumps, tumbles, stunts, pyramids and dance to create daring, wow-factor performances.
“Becoming a cheerleader not only gives young people the chance to master new physical skills, but also provides vital life skills that will stay with them far beyond their time on a squad.”
She explained: “A child who practices good sportsmanship is likely to carry the respect
and appreciation of others into every other aspect of life.
“They learn what it means to be a team player, to commit to excellence and success, to be focused on creating goals and working hard to meet them.
“And they develop into responsible, empowered young adults who are ready to go out and inspire other people.”
The sport recently received preliminary IOC Olympic status, meaning it will now be considered for inclusion in the 2024 Olympics.
This summer, all five Inspire All Stars teams will take to the floor for the International Championships at the O2 arena in London.
If you would like to find out more about Inspire Allstars, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org