Dedication beyond the sidelines: Training with Nevada Cheer ahead of the new school year

Published: Aug. 18, 2023 at 8:24 AM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) -The University of Nevada, Reno welcomes a new year with enthusiasm, marking the return of the Nevada Wolf Pack’s star athletes to the field and court. Along with this excitement, there’s a group with the longest season ahead – the Nevada Cheer team.

Consisting of four distinct squads, the cheer team’s role is pivotal in fan engagement during game time.

This week marks the first time back as a team. The squad met on the grounds of Mackay Stadium alongside Swet Fitness Gym and despite the heat and humidity, they took part of an intense workout.

Rigorous training sessions are nothing new for Nevada Cheer. In the coming weeks, the teams will even embrace double training sessions, a testament to their dedication to refining their skills.

Kim Anastassatos, Associate Athletics Director for Events and Spirit, emphasizes the nature of cheerleading,

“Cheerleading is all about your body, so they have to know how to dance, they have to know how to stunt, some of them tumble. There are so many things they do with their bodies and not with any equipment. It’s amazing how strong, flexible, and enduring they have to be to cheer throughout an entire game.”

Guiding these teams through their conditioning training is Lacey Smith of Swet Fitness Gym, who appreciates the dedication of the cheerleaders and the often-underappreciated sport of cheerleading,

“The sport of cheer, I think, is so underappreciated, and just from being out here today, I have witnessed firsthand how much work it takes. These ladies are so driven. I know they will accomplish whatever they set their minds to because they are conquering this workout in the heat and humidity. We are here to have fun and facilitate that.”

Throughout the year, Nevada Cheer rallies for around 50 to 60 games, showcasing unwavering support and enthusiasm for fellow athletes.

From marketing endeavors to embodying well-rounded student-athlete qualities, the Nevada Cheerleading experience is much more than pompom waving. Instead, it reflects countless hours devoted to community engagement, radiating team spirit.

As they prepare to illuminate the stands with their energy, the Nevada Cheer team continues to underline their impact on the university’s athletic community.