Ahhhh, The Cheerleading World Championships. Nearly every cheerleader dreams of performing at this prestigious competition in Orlando, Florida. Teams from around the world gather together for a long weekend of spectating, training, and competing. However, this event held in April each year is essentially “invite-only”, meaning you must first win yourself a bid. Before getting into bids, let’s cover some history.
Worlds began in 2004 with only two divisions, Senior All Girl Level 5 & Senior Coed Level 5. Back then, World Champions received light-weight jackets as prizes, rather than the rings given today. Over the years, divisions have been added and removed along the way. In 2011, I competed in the “Large Limited Coed Level 5” division, which was removed the following year. Since then, the total divisions have grown to a total of twenty-one, spanning three different levels: five, six, and seven.
Although these divisions & levels vary tremendously, the competitors in each share a common goal: “To Globe”. This phrase is the cheerleading equivalent to receiving a placement in one of the top three spots at The World Championships. The verb ‘globing’ stems from the trophy awarded to those who are so fortunate to medal. Each trophy varies in size & has a unique emblem on the front corresponding to their equivalent metallic colour. However, on the top, a replica globe sits on each.
But in order to win one of these ‘globes’, a team must first be invited to compete. Bids are awarded all around the globe throughout the year leading up to Worlds. In New Zealand, there are currently two event producers who offer multiple bids to The Cheerleading Worlds. These specific ‘Qualifying Events’ are usually held towards the end of the year to give teams a chance to train for a full season before competing for a bid. When it comes to awarding bids, event producers have the ability to choose how they award their bids. The two most common ways are by “Judges Choice” and “Highest Score”, which I assume to be self-explanatory.
It is important to remember that winning bids does come with rules for eligibility. The first may be obvious, however athletes must fit within a certain age grid in order to compete in certain divisions. Next, The Cheerleading Worlds does not allow for ANY crossovers, meaning all athletes must only compete in a single team. Lastly, it is required for teams to compete in the same division that they competed in at the ‘Qualifying Event’, meaning division switching is not allowed.
We at Crave are thrilled to begin our journey to The World Championships, and look forward to attending this event in the years to come.
Disclaimer: This post has no affiliation directly to IASF or USASF. Please visit the appropriate website to access official information (IASF/USASF). This post has no relation to the ICU Cheerleading World Championships.