No Youth Divisions At The Summit + New “Regional Summit”

by TheCheerBuzz
varsity regional summit 2020 2021

Disclaimer: We are not affiliated, associated, authorized, sponsored by, or in any way officially connected with Varsity Spirit, or any of its other brands or affiliates. This post is for informational purposes only.

Breaking news!

Just a few hours ago, Varsity announced some new changes they’ve made for the 2020-2021 season and the reactions from the cheerleading community are, as always, very different.

Here’s what’s changing:

Regional Summit Championships

“Conquer the climb close to home” seems to be the slogan of the new form of Summit competitions all over America. The competitions will take place in different regions (see where the events are here) of the country and teams will compete for the “Regional Summit Champion” title.

Just like with The Summit & D2 Summit, teams will have to earn a bid in order to compete at the Regional Summit. All ages and levels will be able to compete for bids.

No more youth divisions at The Summit

Since 2013, which was the first year of The Summit, youth teams have been able to compete against the best of the best and be crowned Summit Champions.

This is now a thing of the past, as Varsity also announced that they will remove all youth divisions from The Summit, starting next season. All youth teams will still be able to earn bids for the Regional Summit Championships.

As mentioned, the cheer community’s reactions and responses to these changes vary. These are some of the main pros and cons we’ve seen so far:


+ Competitions closer to home are cheaper = families are saving money

+ Some say it’s better for youth athletes to not travel that far

+ Youth athletes will have more to look forward to & might cheer for more years

+ Bigger and better regional competitions


– Youth teams who earned a bid to The Summit 2020 will not be able to compete there next year

– Takes away the “best of the best title” for youth teams & the fun of going to Disney

– Could be complicated for families with athletes on different teams/levels

We would love to hear your opinions on these changes!

Either vote in the poll below or share your thoughts in the comments!

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Abby November 9, 2021 - 22:10

It really is a shame in my opinion. I feel like the youth division is so underrated, I always find it amazing to watch youth teams, especially Y3,4 & 5 as they are so little yet they have such great skills and you can tell how much they enjoy it when they are performing.
I really miss when Y5 was more popular, the only Y5 team I can think of currently is CEA Youth Elite, most other former Y5 teams have changed division to J5 or Y4.
I just loved watching the Y5 teams because they are like the little sisters of the worlds teams.
Personally the junior division isn’t as interesting to watch because there is such a big overlap between juniors and seniors that you often get J6 teams that have loads of S6 worlds athletes on them.
I think they’ve made the wrong decision to stop youth teams attending the summit, hopefully it changes back and hopefully Y5 becomes a more popular division again, I miss WC Twinkles and CA WonderKatz being Y5 🙁

audrey April 28, 2021 - 18:23

umm? Junior 1-2 teams are PACKED with 8-year-olds though?? and youth 3-4 teams need to go though. horrible

TheCheerBuzz April 28, 2021 - 18:51

Right, removing youth divisions from the competition hasn’t removed all youth athletes from it – if that was the goal. Many think the age grids need to change and you’ve got a good argument for that!

Shelli April 21, 2021 - 17:49

What makes no sense to me is a junior level 1 team can go to summit but a youth level 3 team can’t go to Summit. There is a lot of skill level that goes into being on any level 3 team. I Think they should do it like worlds level three teams and above can go to summit, just like level five teams and above can go to worlds.

TheCheerBuzz April 28, 2021 - 18:48

That’s interesting! Maybe they should divide it by level instead – at least it would agree with the “keeping athletes in the sport longer” argument.

Megan November 9, 2020 - 09:41

Think this is so sad that it’s taken away from youth teams they work so far and look forward to this what if the never get that chance to go as an older trans because kids don’t come back??? Please bring youth back to summit my daughter and family had the best memories there

TheCheerBuzz November 9, 2020 - 16:10

Yes, the memories! The whole Disney thing is almost better than the competition!

Stephanie August 9, 2020 - 16:35

I think this is wrong on so many levels. Why youth teams? I really don’t think this will make them cheer longer. There are no gray areas in all star. You either love it or you don’t. Taking summit away from them will have no bearing on whether they cheer longer. I think this is a very bad idea that will more likely make these kids resent cheerleading, not give them something to look forward to.

TheCheerBuzz August 9, 2020 - 23:37

Thank you for sharing, those are some very good points! There’s really no evidence that it will keep athletes in the sport longer…

Stephanie Lee June 21, 2020 - 02:33

I really don’t think this is a good idea! It will be just like a regular competition and these kids work hard! This is something that they strive for all year long and now you are just taking it away from them! What do you think motivates them? A cheap medal and a banner for the gym. They already have plenty of those!

TheCheerBuzz June 21, 2020 - 20:55

Interesting thoughts! Hopefully, their motivation to compete at The Summit will keep them in the sport longer… I guess we’ll see!


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