Get those spirit fingers ready. The Internal Olympic Committee has made official what cheerleaders have known all along—cheerleading really is a sport.
Good news? Yes. But before you start doing crazy back flips, there is a but. The new recognition doesn’t exactly mean we’ll be seeing squads on a medal podium in Tokyo.
Instead, it just means the governing body, International Cheer Union, that lords over all things cheer-related, will get some cash thrown their way to improve the sport. And, that the cheer governing board can now apply to become an official Olympic sport in the future.
But still hug your fellow cheer pals, because a win’s a win.
So, what made the rather controversial International Olympic Committee finally give cheerleading it’s due cred? They did it because cheerleading is cool.
No, really. The IOC’s sports director, Kit McConnell, said “it is a sport with growing popularity, a strong youth focus in schools and universities, and we noted that.”
Seems like, across the board, the IOC is trying to up their cool factor with a goal of attracting a younger audience to the Olympics. Earlier this year, the committee voted to add several new sports to the Olympic games including, skateboarding, surfing and sport climbing. Expect to see each of these youth-dominated sports in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
Until then, we’ll be cheering for this cheerleading victory.