Crossovers. Double teamers. Triple teamers. Competing on more than one team. Whatever you want to call it, it’s definitely a hot topic in the sport of cheerleading. For those of you that are not familiar what a crossover competitor is, it is someone who competes on more than one team within their program. There are a plethora of reasons as to why gym owners have their athletes cross compete and I’ll try my best to explain the most common reasons…both the selfish and unselfish.
Not Enough Athletes
All gym owners and programs SHOULD place their athletes on teams based by levels and then age groups. If a program has x amount of level 2 athletes but the ages conflict so that there might only be 7 kids on a Youth 2 aged 9 and younger, you might want to think about having athletes from other teams crossover to that team. Yes, it is possible for a team to be successful with 7 athletes (e.g. Allstar Athletics Lucky 7), however when you have a team of 7 exclusive flyers, back spots, or bases, it doesn’t work out too well. If you have a Junior 3 team that has age eligible athletes who can crossover to a Youth team and can contribute to that team by building stunt groups without forcing athletes to be a position they’re not physically fit to be, then yes let them crossover.
To Make Your Program Seem Bigger
If you have a program with 140 athletes and each athlete has their own team and each team has an average of 20 athletes, that’s about 7 teams. If it’s possible to make 3 or 4 more teams in the same level, they’re already in, then why not? Your program will seem bigger and more successful which attracts future clients.
This is one of the reasons crossovers should NOT be allowed. There are some programs who allow their level 3 and 4 athletes to compete as level 1 and 2 cheerleaders. Yes, everyone wants to win, however, what lesson are these athletes learning if you are taking your higher level athletes and putting them against true level 1 and 2 cheerleaders.
I understand having crossovers to make a team for the 7 or 8 athletes that are stuck without a team but I believe there should be rules and regulations for them. For instance, I think there should be a one level cross over limit. You should only be able to cross over to a team one level higher or lower than your primary team. I use the word primary, because I think there should only be one team an athlete is dedicated to. I also think there should be a limit of how many crossover athletes are on any given team. This will eliminate full squad or almost full squad crossovers from a level 4 to a level 2 for instance. I’m not 100% against crossovers based on my experiences as a coach, but I do not agree with having multiple athletes crossover to a team and I also do not agree with competitors crossing from 2 or more levels up to a lower level just to create the impression that you’re better than you actually are.
Thanks for reading!
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What are your thoughts?