Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Age Appropriate Music

As a youth sports coach you are suppose to be responsible for your young athletes, RIGHT? I have been coaching youth cheerleading for 7 years now. I have coached 1st & 2nd graders, and now 3rd & 4th graders, and brought them both to many competitions. I am amazed at the total disregard of inappropriate music chosen by some coaches. Don't these coaches understand how impressionable young girls are? Some have there girls doing dance moves that I wouldn't do on a dance floor at a nightclub. And shame on the judges for allowing it! Even the parents, sitting in the stands, are cheering their young girls on. I have 2 girls of my own in youth cheerleading and I wouldn't allow it let alone cheer them on!

Music is a huge part of a routine. The selection of your music can take weeks and is usually chosen in the off season. To get professional music can be expensive. You should always be aware of the lyrics in the music you pick, listen to it over and over to make sure there is no offensive language or crude suggestion. Some lyrics can mean one thing to you but in "slang" can mean something entirely different. In other words your girls can be out on the floor performing their routine to some song you thought was cute, but is actually suggesting something else.

We Coach Youth Sports

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

I was the assistant cheer coach for our elementary squad last year. This year I have been promoted to head coach. I'm excited, however, I want to be able to choregraph an appropriate dance for 1st-5th grade students. Can you help give suggestions on music for this age group?

Coach Maria said...

For that age group I usually use a theme. Such as Grease or Oldies(50's) music, some 80's pop maybe. The girls have fun with it, the judges like it, andd the crowd always loves it too.

Coach Maria

Sheryll said...

Age appropriate music is definately a big part of the routines for youth cheerleaders. I cheerlead for my high school, but also volunteer my after-school time to coach youth cheerleading to girls who's military parents are deployed in Iraq (from ages 8 to 10)

We went to contest in December, and I was appalled to not only hear some of the music that the girls were dancing to, but also some of their uniforms, which could only be described as two ribbons around the girls' chests and backsides.

I was surprised that the judges even allowed it, and was angry that I had to explain to my girls (as appropriately as possible) why we don't wear uniforms like that.

Coach Maria said...

What messege does it send to our young girls? This is a sport and a difficult one at that. It is not a beauty contest, it is hard work. As a coach you are responsible. As a parent you are responsible. As a judge you are responsible. Wake up!

Coach Maria said...

When I said wake up! It was towards the parents, coaches, and judges that allow it.

Sheryll said...

Exactly! I remember especially being appalled when the judges gave points for an 'original routine' to a squad of 6 and 7 year-olds dancing to Magic Stick (I'm a highschooler, and that song makes me cringe!)

Cheerleading should be a sport that builds young girls' confidence level, not make them feel less of themselves because they aren't wearing revealing uniforms and overly-done stage make-up while dancing to a song that they're probably too young to understand. Shame on the judges, coaches, and parents who encourage that kind of behavior.

Coach Maria said...

I couldn't agree with you more. Making coaches aware of the problem will hopfully make them think twice before chosing music, routines, and apparel.

Anonymous said...

to me i let the girls choose their music.you know like cheetah girls or something clean to listen to.(i'm a middle schooler teaching 7-12 yr olds they really love wat i do with them)

Anonymous said...

I coach 1st and 2nd grade cheerleaders. This year I'm doing my own music and routines. I'm not sure what songs are and aren't approiate for their age; the choregraphy I can handle though. Can you give me some suggestions of music for my girls?

jane said...

I was actually thinking about coaching youth cheerleading, but it's been so long since I've been that young I'm not sure what music to use. I like the idea of using old 50's and 80's music. If I was making some of my own cheerleading mixes, what should I make sure and not include so that it's age appropriate? Maria thanks so much for your help.