Sunday, January 3, 2010

Goodbye to 2 soon

It's 2010, everyone has age another year. When the next decade comes, some of you may be feeling how I am feeling now.

I have always been telling young cheerleaders that cheerleading is not something you can become a master in a short time. It is something that requires passion, commitment and sacrifices. Though it is hard to admit, but I was not talented nor born with natural attributes of a cheerleader. I told them that it took me years of hard work and dedication to reach where I am now, and that it is still not good enough.

But I also let them know that now they are much more fortunate and had much better coaches (local and foreign), facilities, and flow of information in cheerleading as compared to the past; that they do not have to "find their way in the dark anymore". What took me 1 year to master then, will only require them a couple of months now.

The key to improvement is belief and work hard. In times now, the belief factor is not as much of a stumbling block as compared to my time, when we cannot even believe that toss to hands was possible. The rest of the equation now is to work hard at it.

And 1 most important thing which I always emphasize is that they are young and had time on their side. Alot more cheerleaders start cheerleading when they are 17 or younger now, which is at least 5 years earlier than when I started at 22. And considering what I had achieved in 6 years together with the improvement in cheerleading, 5 years head start is really a big deal. Alot of cheerleaders in future, by the time they are 21 or 22, will probably become one heck of a good cheerleader.

However I had been thinking a bit today and I have come to this conclusion:

"To all young cheerleaders, do not listen to a single word I had been saying."

Yup that's right, do not try to follow my footsteps, do not take me as a model, don't listen to my stories if that's what's lowers your comfort zone. Yes, the reason being that all of what I said were all stories of the past. It is the present day now; what you already know probably will work well for you NOW, but not in the FUTURE if you stop learning. I took 6 years, but does it means that it is ok for you to take 6 years? A big fat NO! It does not make it ok for your improvement to be slow just because Xingwei also took so long.

You are damn right that it is not ok if you take 3 years to learn a cupie now. Don't console yourself by saying Xingwei(or whoever your coach or senior may be) takes 3 years to learn cupie too. Times are different now. I challenge every new cheerleader to be able to do toss to hands in a month, single liberty in 3 months and cupie in 6 months. Some may be faster some slower, but if you cannot even meet the challenge, you better be working harder. Yes this may sound harsh, but the bar is always raising and bench mark getting higher.

Also all that being said above that you are young and had time on your side, does not means that you can literally take your own sweet time to learn. If it took you as long as your seniors did - then you have failed, your coach has failed or you have failed your coach. You have to always be better than the batch before you; this is especially so for cheerleading in Singapore as we are not a "matured industry" yet and still have alot of room for progression, unlike Japan or USA, and even they are improving every year. My expectations are to see more 18 year olds doing Pop Overs or Tick Tocks etc soon.

If you want to play a part in helping Singapore cheerleading, start from yourself. Everyone has a role to play regardless of their age; Singapore's cheerleading depends on you. Is that too much burden to be placed on your young shoulders my fellow cheerleader?

P.S: BTW as I am a base, the examples given in this post may seemed more relevant for bases; but the general sentiments and message applies to all flyers as well.

No comments: