All-Star Stacking teams

Cheermom22

Original Poster
Jan 19, 2022
3
0
146
Role:
Parent
Is it against the rules to stack a team? We were at Aloha this weekend and watched a level 4 junior athlete with level 4/5 tumbling skills cross over to youth 1,2, and 3 teams and was the main flyer for all 4 teams. Destroying the true level one team's with level 1 tumbler and flyers. Is this allowed normally? This is our first year but this was a huge suprise to our team that they allowed this to happen?
 

catlady

Cheer Parent
Jun 6, 2012
2,668
6,116
2,206
Role:
Parent
There are pros and cons to both sides of this argument. If your team has a last minute injury and needs a fill in at a comp and the only age eligible athletes because of scheduling are level 4 or 5, you're going to be grateful for a more lenient crossover rule. If you're the level 1 team watching multiple athletes throwing standing tucks in warm ups, you're going to be upset.

With that said, I watched a level 1 team at Jamfest have 2/3 of the team do a forward roll into a straddle handstand, twist down and do a valdez (Stingray's Wave if you have Varsity TV). Honestly, I'm not sure many level 6 athletes could do that skill. Level 1 is definitely not the level 1 of yesteryear.
 

cheermomforever

Cheer Parent
May 16, 2012
3,370
3,153
1,266
Role:
Parent
Is it against the rules to stack a team? We were at Aloha this weekend and watched a level 4 junior athlete with level 4/5 tumbling skills cross over to youth 1,2, and 3 teams and was the main flyer for all 4 teams. Destroying the true level one team's with level 1 tumbler and flyers. Is this allowed normally? This is our first year but this was a huge suprise to our team that they allowed this to happen?
No rules except a few bigger comps……u will c “tryouts” done for summit athletes at bigger gyms in spring because of a lot of crossovers! Personally the rule should be all comps year round.
 
Jun 23, 2011
485
364
1,571
31
Glasgow, Scotland
kayemm.tumblr.com
Role:
Coach
With that said, I watched a level 1 team at Jamfest have 2/3 of the team do a forward roll into a straddle handstand, twist down and do a valdez (Stingray's Wave if you have Varsity TV). Honestly, I'm not sure many level 6 athletes could do that skill. Level 1 is definitely not the level 1 of yesteryear.

I love the creativity you can have at level 1. That skill sounds awesome - will need to look it up when I do my usual thing of subscribing just for two months of the year :D

I coach u-17 level 1 and we have a few crossovers to senior 3 (which is our highest level team - I'm in the UK and quite a small programme). The only kids on that senior 3 that can do a valdez are the ones who crossover to lower levels.

My opinion on this is always that it doesn't matter if a kid on a team can throw level 6 skills - they can still only do the skills allowed at the level they are competing in. Nothing says the back walkover of a level 6 athlete is better than that of a level 1 athlete. Sometimes a lower level team benefits from having kids on it who are a bit more experienced as it helps build confidence within the routine - for example having kids who you know you can rely on to remember the counts and know their place and also just help out others that may be struggling in class. I do think there should be a limit on how many teams someone can cross over to, and how many levels they can move across though. Just to have some kind of regulation in place for it and also to prevent burnout. Three or more routines is a lot.
 
Feb 4, 2010
420
540
2,816
My opinion on this is always that it doesn't matter if a kid on a team can throw level 6 skills - they can still only do the skills allowed at the level they are competing in. Nothing says the back walkover of a level 6 athlete is better than that of a level 1 athlete.

It's true that even a Level 6 crossover could possibly blend into a Level 1 routine without noticing them, especially if it's a last minute emergency replacement. You don't necessarily need to have a great back walkover to make it in the upper levels. If you asked many Level 6 kids to do a back walkover right now, they might not be able to do a good one.

However, there's no doubt you can sometimes manipulate a routine with crossovers, which is why some bigger gyms use crossovers regularly and already have them in their routines at Tryout time, not just when they need a fill-in. Take a typical Level 2 athlete and a Level 6 athlete and have them do a series of back handsprings, and you'll often see a stark difference in the quality, speed, and power of the pass. A level 6 athlete doing a Level 3 tumbling pass might be able to fly higher on her tuck and have more power in general.

It especially looks out of place when Level 6 male tumblers are in Level 4 routines; true Level 4 boys don't stand a chance. There used to be a gym in my area that had a Jr 4 flyer cross down onto Youth 2, and she looked so blatantly out of level that it looked like cheating. Yth 2 teams are usually filled with beginners who just learned the skills and are less physically strong, and you can often see a real difference between them and a seasoned Jr 3/4 kid.

I wish there were more crossover rules. Crossing UP a level might be okay, but crossing down often isn't. There's a gym in my area that uses some crossovers when they absolutely don't need to. They let kids choose if they want to cross down to another team (most kids don't because they don't want to get burned out, but some do), which it turns beefs up their rosters, but their rosters are already large to begin with so it feels more manipulative rather than necessary. The worst is when the same kid is in the center of two routines of different levels. It's one thing to need a fill-in or replacement, it's another thing to be blatantly trying to gain an unfair advantage. I'm sure there are true Level 4 kids galore on 4.2 teams.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Emilu2u

catlady

Cheer Parent
Jun 6, 2012
2,668
6,116
2,206
Role:
Parent
It's one thing to need a fill-in or replacement, it's another thing to be blatantly trying to gain an unfair advantage. I'm sure there are true Level 4 kids galore on 4.2 teams.
Both of my kids retired from a 4.2 team that has won the Summit several times. The majority of the athletes were multi-year, strong level two athletes, the rest were the weaker level 3 tumblers at tryouts.

About 7-8 years ago, there was actually a level 5 team (now level 6) where a gym recruited the best in AS across the country. It didn't go well and made it very apparent there's a lot more that goes into a winning team than just having the best athletes. My thoughts on the current arena....The bhs technique on these winning lower level teams is arguably better than many level 6 teams, and it is solely because competitive gyms aren't allowing them to move on until the technique is near perfect. The pointed toes, straight legs, feet together, and unique skill combinations have made level 1 and 2 fun divisions to watch. Slowed progression has helped with jumps, and the stamina has allowed for harder and more creative stunting, as well.
The con, true beginners no longer have a place in this highly competitive arena. :(
 

oncecoolcoachnowmom

Bestest Newbie '14
Mar 2, 2014
7,093
19,252
4,266
Role:
Retired From Cheer
I feel like there is no room for true beginners in the sport anymore. Even prep or half year level one or two can be highly competitive and full of athletes with experience (Ex: Prep J2 half year but everyone on it is an experienced HS cheerleader to the point that a “true never cheered before” beginner is not able to keep up.)
 
  • Like
Reactions: FierceIsTheName

oncecoolcoachnowmom

Bestest Newbie '14
Mar 2, 2014
7,093
19,252
4,266
Role:
Retired From Cheer
Summit has made lower levels so competitive that you basically have to be a level ABOVE the team you want to make at tryouts in order to make the team.

For example, you are not going to make a Summit-winning Junior 1team if you show up with no tumbling. Or even level 1 tumbling. Generally that gym is going to want you to have everything level one and some level two skills.
 

Cheermom1979

Cheer Parent
Aug 25, 2019
203
196
591
NJ
Role:
Parent
I feel like youth 1 you can get away with no experience. Besides that you have to go to prep. At my small gym we have 4 prep teams- a spot for every age / levels 1&2. Jr1 is our lowest level elite team. Most who want to progress spend 2 years in prep and then J1. Sown never move up to full team- but they don’t want the full competitive nature.
 

emo_wifey

Cheer Parent
Jul 13, 2015
685
709
821
Oklahoma City
Role:
Parent
I feel like youth 1 you can get away with no experience. Besides that you have to go to prep. At my small gym we have 4 prep teams- a spot for every age / levels 1&2. Jr1 is our lowest level elite team. Most who want to progress spend 2 years in prep and then J1. Sown never move up to full team- but they don’t want the full competitive nature.
I have to disagree. CP is on youth 1 this year and it is the most competitive year she has had. Every competition except one so far has had 6+ teams and the best they did was third place. The other was a small comp and they were the only D1 team. Her J1 team last year was undefeated and has much less competition.
 

Cheermom1979

Cheer Parent
Aug 25, 2019
203
196
591
NJ
Role:
Parent
I have to disagree. CP is on youth 1 this year and it is the most competitive year she has had. Every competition except one so far has had 6+ teams and the best they did was third place. The other was a small comp and they were the only D1 team. Her J1 team last year was undefeated and has much less competition.

Wow - love how different it is across the country. Here the Junior division is huge- everyone wants to go to summit- but it has also made the Youth and especially the Sr. Division Smaller.

My daughter cheer J1 and S2.
S2 usually has 1 or 2 other teams.
J1 is usually split into A and B there are so many teams.
 
  • Like
Reactions: emo_wifey
Apr 18, 2018
9
5
46
Role:
Parent
I just wanted to add that I think for some small gyms, using crossovers is the only way to field teams at different levels. For example, if you have some senior age athletes but not enough to field a team, crossing a couple junior athletes to that team might make sense, so that the senior age athletes can compete.