Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


Cheerleading competition, Wellington, Sunday 7 September

For the past two year’s Ministry of Cheer has been the biggest and most diverse competitive cheerleading competition in the lower North Island, and this year it’s back – and even more exciting than before. With the biggest Dance division, the most individual entries and the most diverse range of cheerleading gyms that any competition in Wellington has ever seen, not to mention nearly $4000 worth of cash prizes, it is one event you won’t want to miss.

“For the past two years we have seen exponential growth. In 2012 we had about 200 competitors, which increased to 350 athletes in 2013 and we have nearly doubled that for the 2014 event with close to 700 athletes, across a wide range of sporting codes,” says Ministry of Cheer creator Sofia McLean. Based on the increased range of divisions offered this year, including divisions seen in no other cheerleading competitions in New Zealand, the competition will no doubt be the most thrilling yet. “This year we are incorporating the art of tricking, which is a combination of various martial arts such as Wushu, Taekwondo, and Capoiera and fuses them with other acrobatic sports and art forms such as Gymnastics and break dancing. We really are hoping to help promote the sport and artistic expression to a wider audience.”

The type of cheerleading that will be showcased at this event is far from the pom-pom shaking stereotype that most people would think of. Teams are judged on a two and a half minute routine that is crammed full of acrobatic tumbling, and stunting and basket tosses, where ‘flyers’ are lifted and thrown into the air to pull different tricks. The routines are pulled together with energetic dance moves, high-octane music mixes, and glitzy uniforms, making the end result a definite crowd pleaser.

Ministry of Cheer was set up to help grow the sport in the Wellington region, and in the past two years this growth has been impressive. Many existing clubs have increased their team sizes or created new teams to account for athletes that have taken up the sport and some clubs have also started recreational or pre-competitive teams for younger children who are interested in taking up cheerleading, and although these numbers aren't showing in the competition entries yet, they're a sign that things are only going to keep getting bigger.

This growth can also be seen across the country, with more than half of the 40 competing teams travelling from outside of the Wellington region, including University of Canterbury who are competing for the very first time.

“As the only university affiliated cheerleading club to compete in NZ (and the only adult cheer team in the South Island) this competition gives us our first chance to experience performing under pressure, and a taste of what to expect in future years!” says coach Ellen Worthington.
UCheer started four years ago as a group of friends giving cheerleading a go, since then numbers have swelled the skill level has steadily increased. Ellen says “We are both a social as well as competitive team, and we see a number of new recruits every university term, nearly all who are complete new-comers to cheerleading. This event will hopefully show UCheer what level we can achieve, and inspire us to keep striving to make this club a success.”

There has also been an active push to better the technical standards of the sport in both Wellington and New Zealand, with the aim of bringing teams to an internationally competitive level. Due to increasing demand, the NZ Cheer Union holds regular coaching and judging courses across the country to help increase the knowledge base of all coaches. This is a good indicator for the future of the sport according to Sofia McLean. "The greater the knowledge base of our local coaches, the more they will be able to pass on to their teams, and the better prepared our young athletes will be to take over leadership of the sport in a few years. I've been able to see that there is a much better understanding of correct technique and what the judges are looking for."

The Ministry of Cheer competition is happening this Sunday, the 7th of September, at ASB Sports Centre Kilbirnie. Entry for spectators is $10 at the door with under 5’s free, and will provide plenty of entertainment for the entire family.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Review: “Salute” By Royal New Zealand Ballet In Wellington

The Royal New Zealand Ballet performed “Salute” for a final time in Wellington on Sunday night, and it was nothing short of spectacular. More>>

ALSO:

NZ on Air: More Funding For TV Captions To Increase Access

More funding for TV captions to increase access NZ On Air has increased funding to provide more captions and audio description on television programmes for the hearing and sight impaired. More>>

Music: So Laid Back Country China Album Release

On Friday night, So Laid Back Country China held a gig at Meow for the release of their new album With Knees of Honey in Goodbye Canyon. I briefly spoke with Harriet lead vocals, keyboard) and Michael (lead vocals, guitar) before the gig More>>

Art: Wellington Region Celebrates Matariki

Eight Wellington museums and galleries have joined forces to present a major programme of exhibitions and events to celebrate Matariki 2015, the Māori New Year. The Wellington Matariki Festival will host more than 60 free events and activities between Saturday ... More>>

Wellington: TEDxWellingtonWomen Speakers Unveiled

The lineup is announced today for the highly anticipated upcoming event TEDxWellingtonWomen. Speakers include local women and men who have lived extraordinary lives and have ideas worth spreading. More>>


Books: Witi Ihimaera To Address ‘State Of NZ Literature’at Festival

6 May 2015 MEDIA RELEASE Witi Ihimaera to Address ‘State of NZ Literature’ at Dunedin Writers and Readers Festival The New Zealand Book Council has chosen the 2015 Dunedin Writers and Readers Festival as the stage for its annual address, which ... More>>

Culture: Historic Māori Portraits Travel To The Czech Republic

Image credit: Gottfried Lindauer, Wahanui Reihana Te Huatare, oil on canvas, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Mr H E Partridge, 1915 More>>

Art: Something Felt, Something Shared - Enjoy

Gabrielle Amodeo, Ruby Joy Eade, Clare McLean, Kalya Ward Curated by Emma Ng May 7 – 30, 2015 Opening: Wednesday May 6, 5.30pm Strange frequencies are channelled through personal narratives and poetic placeholders in Something felt, something ... More>>

Culture: Pukeahu Park ANZAC Day Commemoration 2015

Pukeahu Park ANZAC Day Commemoration 2015 Images from New Zealand Defence Force Click for big version A bugler plays The Last Post Click for big version A View from the top of the Carillion Click for big version Faces old and young Click for big ... More>>

Television: MediaWorks Announces Dancing With The Stars Hosts

MediaWorks and BBC Worldwide ANZ are delighted to announce host Dominic Bowden alongside co-host Sharyn Casey for the hit series Dancing with the Stars. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Culture
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news