Tag Archives: pom dance

Bay Area Cheerleading Tryouts aka Placements Enroll Today

16 Aug


We are excited when athletes are able to move up through hard work and dedication. Today we move two of our athletes who was determined to make a higher level team. Coming in nearly everyday to train and hit all their skills, you have shown to be a champion at heart.

But moving up a level leaves a space open on our entry level team. SOOOOOO…That means TRYOUTS will open up once again!

2 SPACES have opened up for our NO EXPERIENCE required team. Contact Director Dre at cheer@rawtalents.org or 510-992-6811. Schedule your placement today!

The team is looking for 1 Strong Base and 1 Flyer.

Bay Area Fremont Stars Cheer Raw Allstars

Come see why our dedicated athletes experience rapid growth. See why our Small Division Program has taking titles against large programs and teams twice our size.

We don’t claim to be perfect, we have our high’s and our low’s. But, we have big high’s (like taking 1st place at Nationals hosted by USA Varsity Jamsport and more) when ALL Athletes are focused, dedicated, hardworking, make practices, stretch daily and focus on being the best they can be on the mats. That is the formula for #success

Good Luck at TRYOUTS!

24 May

Wishing EVERYONE who is trying out for Cheerleading or Dance (Drill) Team all the Best! Don’t Sweat It!

Special shout out to our students who are trying out for the following teams:

St. Francis

Washington High School

Gunn High School

OC High School

Sierra High

Holy Names


You have all worked hard and deserve the best! Just do what you know and do it BIG!
Good luck to you all.

Mediocrity – The New Norm?

22 Feb

At a recent coaches meeting, then again at a college recruiting meeting, the concern of mediocrity becoming ramped amongst today’s youth was a hot topic. In the college recruiting meeting were two athletic recruiters, one academic recruiter and one recruiter whose sole focus was to diversify her school. We were all meeting for different reasons, for myself, I was in the meeting to see how to increase the scholarship chances of our gym’s senior cheerleaders and dancers. The recruiters however were there to speak to us coaches and teachers about their struggle to recruit today’s youth because mediocrity has become the norm.

“Students are making it hard for us to diversify our student base,” said one recruiter. He continued to say “Too many student athletes are not pushing themselves to be the best they can be, they seem content to be just ‘one of the guys (girls’). They just stopped trying to stand out in unique ways”. Truth is as an educator and coach I knew exactly what he was saying, I have seen it over and over again, kids dummying down their abilities so they don’t excel past a friend. But since most of the other coaches in the room seemed to be confused by that statement the recruiter made, I asked for an example. He proceed to tell us about this athlete who had been playing soccer for over 12 years. She carried an average 3.5 GPA, stayed out of trouble and made sure to make nice with teachers and classmates. She even did a few stints of public service to beef of the college resume. So what was his issue with her? Well, the reality was, ANY STUDENT trying to get into college was doing exactly what she was doing – playing a sport, good grades and community advocate. There was nothing that made her special. After 15 applications and 5 recruiters, she ended her school year with NO scholarship, no offer to join a college soccer team (which she said was her life’s goal). Meanwhile, her other teammates were awarded scholarships; grants and walk on spots onto the team.  What did her other teammates have that she didn’t, they all had that something “special”. While student A (the person used in this example) was out doing the basic college stuff, her teammates were out perfecting their specialized soccer tricks like The Roulette, taking extra AP classes to beef up the academics, taking ballet classes to increase flexibility and agility. These other teammates understood that although a 3.0+ GPA may sound good to most people, in the world of academic and sports competition, it’s pretty mediocre. Now, student A did get accepted into a few colleges but none of them offered her a spot on a soccer team and that was her goal.

But how does this apply to Cheerleading or Dance? It’s important for team members and parents alike to understand that being part of a team is so much more than showing up to practice each week. The truth is, anyone can show up to practice and pay a competition or uniform fee, if this is all a person does when on a team – most coaches, team members and colleges consider this “mediocrity”. It’s those who practice when they are not in the gym or on the field. Those who stretch mark and work their routines daily to be the best they can be when with the team.  Team members who come to practice each time fully knowing their routines and showing they are progressing, those are the ones whom have broken the cycle of mediocrity. All the recruiters agreed on one thing at this meeting, “mediocrity has become the norm across the board of today’s youth”. Who is to blame? Some blame the parents, some blame the students, blame the teachers or blame them all.

Truth is, anyone who lets you slide through life without expecting you to grow (mentally or physically) is to blame, and yes that includes you.  Everyone has to make a choice, everyday you chose to be ok or the best you can be (at any given thing). There is no substitution for practice, if you don’t practice for a challenging spelling test you will most likely fail, if you don’t practice a routine you will fail. Students are not sent to school or to the gym to fail, so teachers and coaches must enforce learning, dedication and commitment. Sadly, in most schools, most sporting leagues and many other youth programs, the focus is not advancement of the youth, the focus is money. How many paying kids can they get in their doors or on their fields and its time parents and students alike stop accepting this as a way of life. If you have been in gymnastics for 5 years and you still can’t do a solid backhandspring (and you’re a healthy person with no physical restrictions), you need to find a new gym. If you have been cheering for 3 years and don’t have a solid tumbling pass, heel stretch and amazing showmanship, its time to move on. Been with the same tutor for 2 years and still learning at the same level, MOVE ON! Let these teachers and coaches know that mediocrity is NOT acceptable, that you demand more for yourself as an athlete and as a parent you want to see growth. You want to know you are paying for skill training not “play time”.

In the end, the meeting was very informative.  Some coaches are very “Dance Moms” style and have blow out fights with mom’s, dad’s and kids and are faced with parents who end up hating their schools. But these very coaches/teachers say they wouldn’t have it any other way, they see it as a way to “weed out the weak”.  Other’s seemed grateful the discuss took the turn it did because they are struggling with the same issue of kids coming to their programs ill-prepared and not having done their “homework”. The recruiters wanted to make one message very clear to all of us “if you want your students to come to our colleges, you better teach them that medirocrity is 200% unexceptable and will lady your students with no collegescholarship offers”. These recruiters sent a strong message, its up to today’s parent and educator to teach that “medicroity” should not and should have never been a part of the norm. Encourage yourself, your students, your child to push to be the best they can be, go beyond the call of duty and be fully committed to their school and/or team. These students are certain to excel in school, sport and life!

At the end one of the recruiters handed out this speech written by a high schooler:

By O. Douglas, Salutatorian

Apathy is rampant among many young people today. Students are often not willing to work hard to attain success. Mediocrity has become the norm for many of my generation. Many students feel success is owed to them and that it is society’s role to provide it. This false belief has led to complacency.

This apathy can be addressed by schools. If students are given the opportunity to learn in an environment where they are challenged, they will aim higher. Supportive teachers and dedicated administrators help foster a positive environment . My experience in a small learning community has taught me to overcome mediocrity. I have been challenged and supported academically by my teachers. Providing additional help whenever needed, they make themselves readily available to students so that they can be better prepared for college.

As a child of a single parent, I have my mother as a guide . Her sacrifices and values have served as a positive beacon. While I could have easily become a statistic, her example directed me away from negative influences. Others, who have not had the guidance I have had, may not have felt as compelled to succeed . Some young people feel they can do just enough to get by and still be successful. Many don’t see the importance of education, and thus don’t make it a priority.

These issues are the responsibility of the entire community. Teens are constantly bombarded by images of greed and selfishness. More positive role models are needed . There are many positive leaders in the Atlanta community, but they aren’t as obvious to students as the negative figures.

It is incumbent upon all of us to do our part and change the present to better the future.

Flying High: The Toe Touch Guide

7 Dec

Flying High: The Toe Touch is key to every cheerleader and competitive pom dancer

If you have every wanted to be cheerleader or competitive pom dancer, you MUST have the most basic skill. A Toe Touch!

A toe touch can be done regardless of your size, it requires a strong core, powerful legs, a high level of flexibility, and a well stretched back. Our Fremont Flyers are required to practice in and outside the gym, including all their stretches and core exercises. It takes daily practice to build all the elements needed to perfect the toe touch in every jump. Trust us when we say this, A COACH CAN ALWAYS TELL WHEN YOU ARE NOT PRACTICING EVERYDAY! Understand that when you do not do your daily stretches and core exercises, you are not only cheating yourself from being the best you can be but you are also making a conscious decision let your team down too. Remember Cheer & Competition Dance is a team sport and your decision to work daily affects everyone. So the most important part of learning the toe touch is to make the serious decision to work everyday, not only for you but for your team too!

Get the Visual

Bay Area Cheerleading TrainingThe first step in learning to do a toe touch is knowing what a toe touch should look like in the air. At our Fremont Cheer Gym we first teach new members by having them sit on the ground in a toe touch position. Sitting on your bottom, your legs are spaced like a V and your back is straight with arm position either straight in front of you or in a V above your legs. In our gym, your arm position depends on your team. Our younger teams typically place arms in a V above legs, where our more Elite teams will have arm placement in candlesticks in front of them. Every gym is different, but what’s important is that everyone on your team has the exact same arm position. Our members are typically given a  series of ground exercises to help train their core, build flexibility and understanding of how the toe touch should be executed.

Toe Touch | Arm Position During the Jumps

Its important for each person to understand that he/she should NEVER drop their arms during the toe touch. Whatever arm placement your coach has given you is the arm placement you should have when jumping. If the athlete drops their arms it will cause their chest to roll forward. When the chest roles forward it prevents them from getting a high leg kick due to hip alignment. It is also important to know that raising your arms above should level will make your jumps appear lower and can alter body control during the toe touch.  The athlete should use his/her arms to build momentum for maximum jump height. An agressive arm swing can help load the muscles for the jump. It is important to watch arm placement and avoid rolling your chest forward.

How to Do a Toe Touch | Leg Position

At RAW Allstars we are not just focused on getting high off the ground, we are focused on the WHOLE toe touch, from start to finish, Fremont Cheer and Dance Teamfrom  power up to landing- We want to create the biggest and best Fremont Flyers or better yet, California Flyers! Leg position and technique are essential to enhancing the ability to jump high. Strong legs and core (abs/back) are needed for a high jump, but it takes the entire body working together to reach full potential. Athletes should begin with their feet together to maximize jump height. If the athlete begins with his/her feet at apart, he/she will not be able to properly use momentum to build jump height. With feet close together it will give the hip flexors the ability to fire even longer helping to raise her feet above her arms. Now, lets get jumping! As the athlete swings their arms down there must be a slight bend in the knees. This bend combined with the arm swing will preload the muscles for a higher jump. The next portion of the toe touch is where it all comes together. When the arms are on the way up to the proper arm position the athlete will begin to jump. The athlete must maintain a high chest as he/she kicks their legs up and make sure to keep toes pointed with shoelaces to the ceiling. If the athlete’s shoelaces are pointing at the wall in front of them, they will close their hips off, creating a weak looking toe touch. This angle of hip alignment will force the body to kick lower. Be conscious to keep the shoelaces toward the ceiling to automatically correct hip alignment. Once the athlete reaches maximum height they will need to engage and control their body to the starting position with her feet together and arms at her sides. Be sure to whip your feet together, as you want to land with feet close together, often newer jumpers will land with feet apart or legs bent close to the ground.

Need to Improve Toe Touch

There are many things that can restrict an athlete from having a dynamic toe touch. Flexibility and body strength are the 2 major contributors. If a athlete has tight hamstrings and a tight lower back he/she will physically be unable to kick his/her feet as high as he/she desires. Building core strength, hip flexor strength and flexibility will help the athlete reach their full potential. If a cheerleader does not have enough core strength or hip flexor strength to raise her legs high, then she will never be able to reach her potential.

Remember, like anything, a perfect jump is not going to happen over night or by practicing once or twice a week. Flexibility and strength are built over time, an athlete should work no less than 3 days a week at least 20 minutes a day (we recommend 30-40 on stretching and core exercises), but if you are on a tight schedule, then even 5-10 minutes a day at least 5 days a week will make a HUGE difference with your jump skills. Most importantly, it will show your coaches how serious you are about becoming a better athlete and your team will be impressed with your dedication!

Happy Jumping!


Bay Area Youth Cheer Team Takes Home First Place

6 Dec

RAW ALLSTARS Take home 1st Place

RAW Allstars, a Bay Area Allstar Cheer & Dance Program, is BEYOND proud of their youth teams first place finish in their most recent competition.

Not only did they take 1st place, but they received EXCELLENT in nearly all aspects of their performance from the judges.

What an amazing job for a team comprised of nearly 80% new members with no previous dance or cheer experience.

This Fremont based cheer and dance team is heading to Nationals and they couldn’t be more excited. Getting to Nationals isn’t going to be easy, the cost can reach up to $300 per member to travel and stay the 3 days and nights required to participate in this amazing event. The team will work together from now until February 2012 doing fundraisers, working side jobs (mowing lawns, washing cars etcs) to raise all the funds needed so ALL team members can participate in Nationals. “They earned the right together, so we are going to work hard to raise the funds so they can all go to Nationals together”, said Coach Gaborski.

If you are interested in sponsoring this team you can donate online by clicking here, or contact us at cheer @ rawtalents.org if you are interested in Corporate Sponsorship. We will gladly wear your brand at Nationals if you help us get there!