I was determined to do it, and I did it with sheer luck, some inspiration and a lot of perspiration.
As the assistant cheerleading coach for my daughter’s knee-hi squad, I volunteered myself to assemble a dance routine for this year’s halftime show, a tradition among the cheerleaders in the youth football association and league.
I had a song in mind from my days as head coach of a Catholic Youth Organization squad in the mid-’90s, of which my youngest sister was a member. I figured modify the routine for our 11-member squad who are in grades kindergarten through fourth — as the original routine was performed by nine girls in grades fourth through eighth.
Easy, right? Wrong. The head football cheerleading coach suggested using a song with which our squad would be more familiar.
Point well taken. I guess using the Quad City DJ’s “Space Jam” from the movie of the same title, released in theaters in 1996, wouldn’t be something they would know. None of them were born at that point!
So I chose the theme song from the Nickelodeon series “Big Time Rush” from the band’s CD of the same name. I actually watch the show with my daughter, like the band and its music, and matching the moves with the words and beat came pretty easily. The key was keeping the movements simple, not too dancey or intricate, no waves or ripples. They also had to be moves that could be easily performed with pom-poms, which add flair to the performance.
So I did it, taking up time with the first two verses and the refrain, which plays twice. Then I got a little more ambitious and added another verse, with repeat movements and what I think would be a cute ending for the squad.
I sit here in these early morning hours anticipating practice later today, where I will present the finished routine and start teaching the girls the movements. I hope they like it. I hope they pick it up easily. And I hope our fans enjoy this year’s performance throughout our eight-game season, which could lead to playoffs if this year’s season was like last year’s. The knee-hi “A” team went undefeated and reached the championship game, only to fall in overtime. But it was a great ride and I was proud and glad to be a part of the association and its cheerleading coaching staff.
Here we go, routine, here we go! …