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How to Make a Cheerleading Recruiting Video

cheerleading athlete

Cheerleading recruiting videos are essential to get on a coach’s radar. They help coaches evaluate an athlete’s skill set and better understand their strengths on the mat. Most coaches actually conduct online evaluations first to narrow down their list of top recruits. Then they scout athletes in-person at clinics, open gyms or tryouts.

In fact, some schools require a video submission to begin their tryout process. Underclassmen can submit highlight videos to coaches for feedback, while upperclassmen can use them to secure a spot for tryouts. Basically, student-athletes who want to be evaluated by college coaches need to proactively make a recruiting video.

How to make a recruiting video for cheerleading

Before setting out to create a video to send to your top schools, be sure to visit the colleges’ websites and check their video criteria. Each program may have different requirements for what they want included. Many top colleges in the country provide specific guidelines on their website, down to the apparel the recruit should be wearing.  

If there is no guideline provided, recruits should create a video that includes competition and practice footage to showcase their top skills in tumbling, stunts and jumps. Plus, for each school, perform the fight song and cheer, as well as common game-day stunts. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when creating a cheerleading recruiting video:

What do college coaches look for in a cheerleading highlight video?

While each college may have different levels of skill requirements they look for when recruiting athletes, here are some common aspects coaches evaluate when watching a student-athlete’s cheerleading recruiting video:

Footage to include in a cheerleading recruitment video

What to include in your cheerleading recruiting video depends on when you’re graduating and which programs you’re interested in. Underclassmen can use recruiting videos to get on a coach’s radar, be evaluated and receive feedback. Juniors and seniors should submit recruiting videos to schools as a part of the program’s tryout process. Many colleges have specific guidelines on their website that outline exactly what skills the coaches want to see and even how to dress for the video. For example, Ohio State University, the University of Kentucky, and Oklahoma State University provide detailed video guidelines on their website. Always go to the school’s website first to check for video requirements.

Here are the most common skills to include in a cheer recruiting video:

Cheerleading competition clips

While practice footage is a great way for recruits to show off their top skills, cheerleading competition clips give coaches insight into how the student-athlete performs under pressure. They look closely at the complexity of their stunts and pyramids, as well as their tumbling skills. Additionally, coaches look for overall performance and appeal—is the cheerleader smiling, while seamlessly performing skills with ease and control?

Even though cheerleading coaches would love to evaluate every recruit in person, they simply don’t have the time to do so. Many college coaches discover recruits through elite club teams, such as All-Star cheer, so including competition clips in your video from club programs is a great way to get evaluated—and essentially establish a relationship with that coach.

How long should a cheerleading recruiting video be?

College cheerleading coaches are busy, so they typically look for quick, informative videos that immediately highlight the cheerleader’s best skills in tumbling, stunts, jumps and cheers. When colleges provide guidelines for their video submissions, recruits should follow it exactly and never add more or less footage. Typically, a video that is short enough to capture a coach’s attention but long enough to showcase all of the cheerleader’s skills usually lands between four and five minutes long.