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Recreational & Junior  Cheer 

What is Recreation Cheerleading?

The purpose of recreational cheer is to provide the entire youth community with a positive cheer experience at an appropriate level. It is expected that recreational cheer programs will offer participants the opportunity to have fun while increasing their physical fitness, learning new cheerleading skills, teamwork, fair play, leadership, sportsmanship, time-management skills, cooperation, trust, and regard for others.

Recreational Programs are..

  • Associated with and governed by an organization. (Examples include but are not limited: to the YMCA, boys and girls club, pop warner, or city parks & rec program.)

  • Not be affiliated with an all-star team.

  • Associated with an organization like the examples listed above, programs must be Independently operated but cannot be associated with an all-star program.

  • Competitive recreational programs are not required to cheer for sports programs if the above rules are met.

  • At the time of competition, entrants must be registered students, and official full-time members of their team. No members shall be older than 12th grade. The penalty for an eligibility violation will be disqualification.


  • Follow the NFHS Spirit Rules book for safety regulations issued by the National Federation of High School Associations. NFHS Spirit Rule Books are available in the NFHS Rules App and printed versions at:

  • Each team must have a  “Hands on” stunt Certificated coach. The Washington State Cheer Coaches Association must approve the Safety certification program. Coaches must be recertified every two (2) years with “hands on” training. Stunt certification classes can be found here:

  • Because WIAA requires assistant coaches to be at least 19 years of age, certificates for completing a stunt certification clinic and passing the test will be issued only to individuals who are at least 19 years of age.

  • Every team must have a stunt certified coach on site during practice and/or competitions for an athlete(s) to be eligible to stunt.

  • All Coaches and Volunteers must pass a background check to have contact with athletes.


STUNT CERTIFICATIONS are regulated and managed by the WIAA, which is a separate organization from WSCCA. Stunt certification classes can be found here:

*If you're experiencing technical difficulties registering for a clinic, please contact Nick

Steps to receive your certification after you've attended a clinic:

1. Return to your account

2. Select the "Conference Center" tab at the left of the page on

3. Click on the WIAA 2023 Cheer Coach Stunt Certification conference

4. Select the "Sessions & Schedule" tab on the left-hand side of the screen

5. Select "Confirm Attendance" (Note: If this step has already been completed, it is because you selected "Add to Your Schedule" prior to the clinic. Don't panic -- this is normal. Proceed to step 4 below).

6. Select "Certifications & Forms" on the left-hand side of the screen

7. Select "Start Application"

8. This should take you to a page with the header, "Are you ready to apply?"

9. Click all the sliders on this page to the right, indicating completion

10. Proceed to fill out the survey and download/sync your certificate

Would like to introduce your Recreational Director. She is a great resource for all things cheer.  

Danni Chapman .jpeg
Danni Chapman 
Recreational Director

Hello, I am Danni Chapman your Recreational Director.

     I first started coaching in 2000 at the junior high level and soon after found myself coaching my first high school team. I lead them into their inaugural season in the world of competitive cheerleading.

In 2013 I started my own recreational program, now known as Puyallup Cheer Academy. I was seeking to offer our younger thriving athletes a year around cheerleading program, like what we have offered at the high school level.

      I value and seek opportunities to help grow cheerleading within Washington state. In past years, I've hosted Rec Connection open houses at Puyallup Cheer Academy, where I have had the pleasure of networking with several other local recreational coaches in our area.

       Over the years, I've also volunteered and worked with several recreational programs from lending uniforms for fittings, teaching a variety of cheers, helping with routine choreography, and offering any additional knowledge or skills within my wheelhouse.

       My background in both High School and Recreational cheerleading has allowed me a broad spectrum of working with principals, athletic directors, football boards, coaches, and athletes of all abilities.

       Being Recreational Director for Washington State will allow me to share ideas and bridge the gap between high school and recreational coaches. I look forward to sharing my passion for growing cheer coaches and athletes in our beautiful state!


Programs wanting to compete in Washington will follow the NFHS spirit rules for cheerleading and will use the WSCCA/WSCJA high school score sheets for all qualifying events. As well as a few additional WSCCA requirements. Please review the scoresheets, rubrics and ratios needed for a putting together a successful routine. 



The competition season in Washington starts in November with WIAA qualifying events hosted by high schools around the state. These qualifying competitions will be held up to two weeks before WIAA State Championships for High School.

As for Recreational, Junior High /Middle School and JV teams, they are invited to compete at these competitions as well. The WSCCA hosts the Junior State Championships as a culminating event for Recreational, Junior High/Middle school and JV teams. There are no pre- qualification requirements for this competition.​

​Recreational &  Junior Divisions are determined by WSCCA.​

Each student may participate in tumbling or non-tumbling, but not in both, as well as stomp or game day.

Cross overs are not allowed between the tumbling and non-tumbling divisions

( If a Junior Varsity and Varsity combine/share athletes they must compete in the Varsity Divisions)


All recreational teams must provide a letter, on letterhead, from the overseeing director of their program.

1. This letter must include confirmation that all Coaches and Volunteers who will be collaborating with their team have current Hands on Stunt certification, and passed a background check.

There are multiple ways to accomplish this if your program has not done so already. 


USA Cheer Membership (professional Membership or Higher)


Washington State Patrol online background checks

2. Please include the full names of those coaches and volunteers. (Any coaches or volunteers that are not listed will not be allowed in the warm up or TEAM only areas) There is limited space in the warm up areas and only 2 Coaches of the participating team will be allowed in the warm up areas.


3. All Recreational cheerleaders will be required to fill out a participation waiver for competitions.


Music Guidelines

Programs wishing to extend their season can attend Regional and National Competitions as well. National companies will offer other opportunities for competitions throughout the year. ( Please note that every competition company has their own rules, score sheets and fees)


$200 per routine for Recreational

$100 per routine for Junior Varsity, Middle School, Jr High​​

Recreational -Middle School-High School JV Divisions

​Recreational and Junior divisions are determined by WSCCA.

2024-2025 the age requirement for Senior division will be 10-18yrs.



The age grid provides a list of divisions that may be offered by a competition director. A competition

Director does not have to offer every category or division listed, and may combine categories.



Traditional Tumbling and Non-Tumbling categories are separated into age divisions and categories.

Divisions -Birth Year- Gender- Team Size



  • 8-12 yrs Female/Male 5-36 members

  • 14-18 yrs Female/Male 5-36 members


  • Middle School/Junior High - Female/Male 5-36 Athletes

  • High School JV-Female/Male 5-36 Athletes

  • ( If a Junior Varsity and Varsity combine/share athletes they must compete in the Varsity Divisions)


TRADITIONAL : performance competition routines, both tumbling and non-tumbling must include both a music portion and a cheer portion.

Routine Max: 2 minutes 30 seconds (150 seconds)

Music Max: 1 minute :30 seconds 

The 54’ x 42’ cheer mat area represents the performance boundary area for the Tumbling, Non-tumbling categories.

STOMP ROUTINE :Stomp and Shake Cheerleading has it's own style and culture. During these routines teams will utilize traditional cheerleading arm motions combined with creative and rhythmic beats, in their dance and cheer portions of the routine. Expect to see upbeat tempo changes as well as non traditional cheer movements.

Routine Max: three (3:00) minutes (there is no music time limit for the Stomp category.)

The basketball court boundary lines represent the performance boundary for the Stomp routine. The Stomp category will have (3) three mats that will be centered horizontally on the Court.

GAME DAY ROUTINE: Teams will demonstrate SITUATIONAL SIDELINE, CROWD LEADING Cheer and FIGHT SONG in this routine 

Routine Max: three (3:00) minutes (there is no music time limit for the Game Day category.)

The 54’ x 42’ cheer mat area represents the performance boundary area for Game Day Routine.


Teams should demonstrate spirit and enthusiasm while entering the performance floor and before the music begins.

The use of crowd leading tools such as signs, poms, flags and/or megaphones is required.

Each section should have a beginning and end. Note: Spirited crowd leading interaction between each section is encouraged to continue the game day feel. Stunts are not allowed as a transition before/between sections, this would include the team’s entry to the floor and any time prior to starting the performance.

The INCORPORATION of stunts and or tumbling is required in the : SITUATIONAL SIDELINE, CROWD LEADING Cheer and FIGHT SONG.


Game Day Skill Restrictions:

No tosses (basket, sponge or elevator) are allowed.

No inversions are allowed.

No twisting released dismounts are allowed.

No running tumbling is allowed.

Stunts are not allowed during the team’s entry to the floor or any time prior to starting the performance.

Single leg stunts are limited to liberties and liberty hitches.

Standing tumbling is limited to one tumbling skill and a back tuck is the most elite tumbling skill allowed. Examples: Rippled single back handsprings would be allowed. Jump tumble (single skill) would be allowed Standing full is not allowed..

In between elements, teams must always return to the performance surface. Teams may kick, jump or tumble but may NOT stunt.

During the Band Chant, only kicks and jumps are permitted.


BAND CHANT: should have an emphasis on crowd appeal and practicality. Squads should utilize spirit raising props and focus on creative movements such as level changes or ripples, execution of the material and encouraging the crowd to participate.– No stunting or tumbling is permitted, however jumps and kicks are allowed.

SITUATIONAL SIDELINE: Following the band chant, the announcer with give squads a game scenario indicating an offense or defense situation. Teams should show their definitive understanding of the situation with an offensive or defensive crowd-leading response.. 


Situational Cues


"And that's another... first down for the home team."

The home team takes control of the ball on their own 25 yard line.

"What a catch! That sets our team up in the red zone ready to score."

"It's 1st and 10 for the home team."

"It's a close game and our home team is driving down the field for a score.


it’s 3rd down for the D, get on your feet and make some noise.

"Our team needs a big stop here"

"Let's push 'em back defense!"

"The home team is digging in to get the stop on our own goal line."

"Our team needs to make a stop here to seal the win."

"After that turnover, our team needs to make a defensive stand."

Situational Cues process for State

Teams will not have advance notice of their cues

The list provided by WSCCA (above) will be used

The announcer will announce a team’s cue following their Band Dance.

A prepared schedule with a script will be provided for the announcer.

CROWD LEADING Cheer : Following the Sideline, Crowd Leading can include a cheer reflective of a timeout, general sideline / spell-out or other cheer material with minimal words, inciting a response and encouraging a crowd to yell along. Teams are required to incorporate spirit props and practical skills (stunts and/or tumbling, if the division allows).

FIGHT SONG: The final element should reflect your school’s traditional Fight Song. Fight Song incorporation is limited to three (3) consecutive 8-counts of stunts and/or tumbling. Counting will begin with the initiation of a skill and continue until either the incorporation is complete or the end of the 3rd 8-count. (If the Fight Song repeats, the incorporation will only be permitted both times if the skills are repeated exactly the same.).Squads should utilize spirit raising props and add creative movements such as level changes or ripples as well. For teams that do not have an official Fight Song, it is recommended to use a second selection of band chant music.

Teams may add up to 1 (one) mascot in their Game Day Routine. The mascot must meet all the eligibility requirements as the athletes. The mascot must enter the floor with the team and should be used to raise crowd energy and participation. The mascot is not allowed to be involved in any stunts / technical skills and or tumbling and should position themselves away from skills being performed. The mascot will not count towards the total number or gender of participants allowed in the division.

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