Pressure is a privilege
I love this saying, we often say it to our oldest teams. But what does it mean exactly? Have you heard it before?
First, the credit for this notion of pressure being a privilege goes to Ali Moffat, Co-Owner of Cheer Sport Sharks (coaches, if you get the opportunity to go to one of her classes at a conference – GO), she was saying it to her World Champion Great White Sharks because the pressure they feel at worlds is just that, a privilege.
Why? There are teams who want to go to worlds, who don’t make it. There are teams who do not make day two, all the while, her Great Whites have the privilege of feeling the pressure to globe AGAIN with the added pressure of the cheer world watching because they’ve become a team to know and watch for.
Not just Cheer
Our Canadian hockey team goes into the world juniors each year feeling the pressure to medal. Hockey teams feel it going into the finals, they feel it if they’re returning to a tournament they won the previous year, and goalies feel it after a shut out win – it’s a privilege no matter the sport, no matter the win or the success.
If you’re an all-star cheerleader and just won the last competition, or maybe you won last season, leveled or got grand you’ll feel the pressure to repeat that win. Coaches are not exempt from this pressure. They feel it too even if they are coaching a new team. Regardless, its a privilege.
I always pair this chat with: A coach will never push you if they don’t believe in you. If they really really believe in you, they’ll push you even harder. Never ever misinterpret a coach being hard on you as meaning they don’t like you. If they don’t believe you can do it, they’ll take the skill out versus continue to push you to work on it. We’re hardest on the ones we love and believe in. My favorite coaches and teachers are the ones who were the hardest on me. They had the biggest effect on influencing me as a teenager. I credit them for my work ethic, and it’s not a secret that I enjoy my work! Be sure to remember this when practice gets hard. Your coach believes in you, so make sure you believe in yourself and your teammates too.
I’ve heard people say ‘it’s too much pressure, they can’t handle it’. Pressure, like stress, and trigonometry is something we get better at with practice. If there’s something I’ve learned from coaching, its that children will always rise to the occasion if we give them the opportunity. Never ever underestimate them.
I love cheerleading. I love the flash, the choreography, the music, the fun, that stress in front of the mat knowing I need to put all my trust in the athletes as there’s no restart button. I wholeheartedly believe in the lessons this sport has to offer for my athletes, my staff and for me as a gym owner. I am, without a doubt, a better coach, mother, friend and person because of everything I’ve learned from cheerleading.
As we officially kick off competition season in the Maritimes, I hope you have the greatest season yet,but more importantly I hope your coaches push and challenge you every-single week, and I hope you have the privilege of feeling pressure this season!