Cheer Coach Sportsmanlike Conduct

Cheer coach sportsmanlike conductIn our first look at cheer coaches sportsmanlike conduct, we will take a look at a post that got the attention of thousands of cheerleaders and coaches.  The choreographer who posted this is a veteran coach who has led his athletes to many championships. He has also been a coach and a cheer summer camp instructor who is a well respected member of the cheer community, Eric Bichao. Take a look at what he had to say and let us know your thoughts.  Are we as coaches teaching our athletes the right messages? Have you felt something similar from other teams? Have you seen the disagreements between teams or programs escalate online? This post has been edited to be deemed appropriate for even our youngest readers. Some of the content (not initiated by coach Bichao) was explicit and not suited for all audiences.

Dear cheer world,

“I use to coach high school cheerleading and was quite successful (11 State titles in 12 years), and unfortunately, that type of success brings a lot of jealousy and hatred from the competition. Over the years my teams would have to endure continuous negative postings on public forums after great victories. There would even be personal attacks on me on those same forums, and I’ve even had parents get “in my face”. However, I realized the cheerleaders, coaches, and parents that attacked us only made themselves look foolish for displaying such poor sportsmanship. I am proud of my kids for doing as I instructed by not responding and taking “the high road” all those years…

…As athletes we take an oath to display good sportsmanship. As a coach we take that same oath, but it is also our job to make sure that our team and our fans follow this oath. If not, what are we teaching our kids? Do they not need to learn that they don’t always get what they want in life? Have we become so selfish and spoiled that if we lose a competition we refuse to show class? Is there denial in believing that sometimes in life there may be someone better than you?…

…I have stated for years that the lack of sportsmanship in cheerleading needs to be addressed. The USASF just recently released new rules for Worlds that prohibit excessive celebration and boasting or a penalty will be assessed. We should have something in place for high school. Since many of the unsportsmanlike acts here occur after awards, I propose a suspension of one season for all violations of sportsmanship. I think something as severe as a suspension will get everyone’s attention and force these coaches to address sportsmanship with their athletes. If they don’t, then they don’t deserve to be allowed to compete.”

What are your thoughts on this? Is it necessary to implement something similar to the USASF behavior guidelines for High School competition teams? What are your ideas on how to put an end to cheer bullying? For more information on cyber bullying or the appropriate steps to take if you our your team feels threatened visit: Visit Cheer NN daily to check for more stories on this topic.  Contact Us to give us your feedback or ideas! We appreciate the frustration that coach Bichao faces. We know he is not alone. Let’s help put an end to bully types of behaviors! Let us know times when you have seen behaviors like this so we can find the right resources to help your team. Send us your stories or Become a Cheer NN Reporter!