Because many teams don’t practice in the gym right now (and cheerleaders are known for not being able to stop cheering) virtual practices have become popular.
Tip: Many teams use “Zoom” where you can have 40 minutes long video calls for free! Plus, you can use it both from your phone and computer (click here for tutorials).
It looks like teams are having a lot of fun doing these virtual practices, however, coming up with things to do can be hard.
This list puts together some of the best ideas we’ve found so far!
1. Plays “Simon says”
You’ve probably played this game before, but in case you haven’t, here’s an explanation:
Whoever is the game leader (like the coach) tells all the participants what they need to do. The coach begins by saying “Simon says” and then what the athletes should do. For example, the coach says “Simon says do a high v” and all athletes do it. If the coach doesn’t say “Simon says” and just “do a high v”, all athletes who did it are out!
Here’s a list with many ideas, but you could also make it more cheer related with things like motions and marking your routine.
2. Play freeze dance/dance stop
Play a song and have all of the athletes dance around. Whoever doesn’t stand still and freeze when you stop the music is out. Play your team’s music and have them mark the routine to make it even harder!
3. Play bingo
Everyone makes their own bingo board and fills it with numbers or words from a category. These categories can be parts of your routine, stunt skills, motions, tumbling skills – whatever you can think of.
The coaches then say any word from the category and whoever wrote it down on their board can cross it off. The athlete who first gets your decided number of crosses in a row wins!
4. Do a scavenger hunt
Give the team items they need to find at home, like a red sock, a stuffed animal, cheer shoes, or a pink bow. You can play so that the athletes who find it first and brings it to the screen wins, or everyone just needs to send a picture of it and nobody wins.
5. Make a dance where every athlete adds a motion
Start with a motion that everyone does, then the athletes take turns and each one adds a motion. When everyone has added one, you have a whole dance to practice!
6. Lip sync battle
Play a song that the athletes know and have them lip-sync for their lives (any RuPaul drag race fans?). If you want to spice it up more you can have the team dress up depending on the song.
Just because you’re not actually practicing doesn’t mean you can’t work out!
8. Strength training
The same goes for strength training as conditioning. It will probably be tough to come back to practice with no muscles left.
Looking for exercises you can do at home? Check out these 5 Best Overhead Exercises to Improve Stunting & Tumbling Strength from The Cheer Kin!
9. Jump drills and training
Work on your jumps by doing drills and/or jumping! It’s easy to do at home, but make sure athletes use good technique and a good surface so no one hurts themselves.
10. Tumbling shaping drills
There are lots of great shaping drills online that you can have your team do. Most of them work as strength training, but it might be easier to get athletes to do them when having skills in mind. Motivate them that it helps perfect and build future skills!
Follow a stretching video together or do your normal team stretching. Challenges can be who holds a body position the longest, who’s got the best scorpion (not just flyers), or can hold the splits longest. See if the coaches can beat the athletes!
12. Trivia or quiz
Make quizzes and have the team write down their answers. Test their general cheerleading knowledge, how much they know about the coaches, or use random subjects.
13. Show your pets (great for younger teams)
Have nothing to do? Let your athletes show their pets and talk about them! Talk about the pet species, names, breeds, ages, or favorite foods and have a cozy time together.
14. Celebrate birthdays
Sing for the athletes and coaches who celebrate their birthdays during this time at home!
15. Share the screen and watch videos together
There is a function on zoom where you can share the screen with everyone (tutorial/instructions here). Watch a cheerleading documentary or movie, your routine, other team’s routines or TheCheerBuzz youtube videos!
Videos on our youtube channel include level 1-4 stunt sequences and pyramids, funny cheerleading TikToks, and most watched routines at Worlds, ICU & The Summit 2019. Click here to view TheCheerBuzz on youtube.
16. Just talk
Simply sitting down and talking is great team bonding!
17. Crazy hair day
A fun twist where the athletes have the craziest hair they can achieve.
18. Talent show
See what crazy, hidden talents the athletes (and coaches) have. Take turns and show off skills that don’t have to do with cheerleading!
Tip: organize your entire season with our coach planner!
Click the photo for more information.
19. Dress up in 1 minute
Give the team a short amount of time to dress up as crazy as they can. Do it with different themes or items that they must include to make it more challenging.
20. Design time
Let the team design and draw their own bows, practice wear, and uniforms. Make ones for your team or gym and see what ideas they come up with.
21. Coach impressions
How well can the athletes imitate the coaches?
Start journaling together! There are tons of ideas online of what you can write down and keep track of.
23. Talk about memories from the season
Sit down and chat about the season you had together. Funny moments, memories, best moments, and all of that.
24. Snack or eat together and talk
Have a team breakfast for example!
25. Play charades
Everyone knows how to play charades and it’s always fun!
26. Play “draw something”
Take turns, draw something, and let the others guess what it is.
27. Share photos and videos
Find old embarrassing photos, fail videos, ugly action shots, and other memories you can find in your camera roll.