Friday, February 21, 2014

Various Styles Of Cheerleading In The Caribbean

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post showcases nine video examples of various styles of cheerleading in the Caribbean. My general comments about these and other YouTube Caribbean cheerleading videos that I've watched are also included in this post. In alphabetical order, the Caribbean nations from which the cheerleading squads showcased in this post come from are Anguilla, Barbados, Jamaica, St. Kitts, and Trinidad and Tobago.

Click "More Caribbean Cheerleading Videos" for a companion piece to this post.

The content of this post is presented for historical, cultural, recreational, and aesthetic purposes.

DISCLAIMER: These videos are selected to demonstrate cheerleading styles and not necessarily to showcase the best cheer performances in a particular competition or exhibition.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who are featured in this post. Thanks also to the publishers of these videos, and thanks to all those who are quoted in this post.

I believe that since at least the 1980s a complete categorization of cheerleading styles should include traditional (gymnastic) cheerleading, dance style cheerleading (which mostly includes dance steps from R&B/Hip-Hop music and is performed to that music as well as to American Pop music), and African American originated stomp & shake cheerleading.

According to, cheerleading was introduced in the Caribbean in 1994.

I'd categorize most Caribbean cheerleading that I've watched as dance style cheerleading combined with gymnastic cheerleading. Only a few videos of Caribbean cheerleaders that are published on YouTube to date performed gymnastic cheerleading without any dance movements. A few cheerleading videos from Jamaica of high school squads whose routines appear to me to be heavily influenced by African American body patting form of stepping*. However, to date, I've not found any videos of Caribbean cheerleaders doing any "up-stomp" (high stepping) or "jigga pop" (fast double shakes of the hips) that most stomp & shake cheerleaders do. That said, I've noticed a number of Caribbean cheerleading squads chanting taunting cheers although I usually can't understand most of what was being said. While saying those chants those cheerleaders lean forward in an intimidating stance which in the United States is stereotypically associated with African American female's arguments and that is found during or at the end of many stomp & shake cheerleading chants & cheers.

In addition to American Pop music and R&B/Hip-Hop music & dance steps, Caribbean dance style cheerleading includes dancehall Reggae music and the sensuous hip wining movement. Although female stomp & shake cheerleaders perform hip shaking moves, I don't believe that they do wine. While wining would be considered to be highly risqué in most American dance style cheerleading routines, that hip gyrating movement & other dancehall Reggae dance moves seem to be standard performance practices in Caribbean dance style cheerleading.

*By stepping I mean the foot stomping movements that originated with and are most closely associated with historically Black (African American) Greek lettered fraternities and sororities.

These videos are presented in chronological order based on their posting dates with the oldest videos given first.

Example #1: ardenne high sports cheerleading 1st plce- cohen (jamaica) [Jamaica]

krabbyism, Uploaded on Jun 20, 2010

the best house cheerleading in jamaica- cohen house (Ardenne High school sports day cheerleading 1st place

Example #2: The Garrison Secondary School Cheerleaders 2011 [Barbados]

Stephanie Chase, Uploaded on Mar 22, 2011

2011 Barbados Federation of Cheerleaders Championships...
Results: The Garrison Secondary School: 1st Place The Lodge School: 2nd Place The Alexandra Secondary School: 3rd Place

Example #3: Wolmer's Girl School : Cowper Cheerleading [Jamaica]

Miley Brown Uploaded on Feb 23, 2012

Example #4: Campion College Cheerleading 2013: Regis [Jamaica]

Abi gail Published on Feb 20, 2013
According to a commenter, this squad came in first in the competition.

I gather from some commenters that in Jamaica, college sometimes (always?) means “high school” and not post high school as it does in the USA.

Example #5: Sports day cheerleading in #Anguilla [Anguilla]

Josveek Huligar, Published on Mar 26, 2013
These cheerleading squads are from the Albena Lake Hodge Comprehensive School in Anguilla.

Example #6: Washington Archibald Takes Home the Gold! [St. Kitts]

Ryddim Magazine Published on Mar 28, 2013

Example #7: UWI cheer leaders win 2013 InterCol title [Jamaica]

trackalertstv, Published on Apr 7, 2013

UWI cheer leaders win 2013 InterCol title
University of West Indies (Jamaica)

Example #8: Utech Cheerleading [Jamaica]

SportsXplorer Multimedia Published on Apr 8, 2013
According to a commenter, the Utech (University of Technology, Jamaica cheerleading squad and the UWI cheerleading squad tied at this event.

Example #9: TNT cheer and dance winners 2013 cheer leading competition [Trinidad & Tobago]

trinigirl201, Published on Apr 8, 2013

TTCF cheerleading competition 2013 Eldo all stars

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1 comment:

  1. To clarify, from watching YouTube videos, it doesn't appear to me that most Caribbean cheerleading squads include stepping/body patting in their cheer routines. it also doesn't appear to me that any form of stepping (with or without body patting) is a common component of African American (or any other American) form of cheerleading. However, it does appear that some Caribbean cheerleading groups and some African American cheerleading groups do body patting or other forms of stepping. From my limited experience (mostly from viewing YouTube videos) it seems that its pre-university Caribbean cheerleading squads and pre-university American cheerleading squads that do stepping (with or without body patting).

    As I indicated in this post, I believe that the stepping/body patting that is done in the videos that are showcases in this post appear to be influenced by stepping that originated by and is still most closely associated with historically Black (African American) Greek university based lettered fraternities and sororities. Although those movement forms are very similar if not the same, when performed by school cheerleaders, I refer to that movement form as "foot stomping" instead of "stepping".

    Click for a pancocojams post about foot stomping that includes video examples of that movement form performed by high school cheerleaders.