Our Town Guymon: Head Over Heels
Wed, 29 Apr 2015 22:26:32 GMT —
Taryin Aranda, 8, has been cheering for half of her life, and said it takes much more than just a set of pom poms.
"You have to be a teammate. You can't just be like, well you suck," Aranda said.
Her mom, Crystal Aranda, is the owner and head coach of Head Over Heels Gym and Cheer.
Aranda has taught classes since 2008, but she opened her doors to Head Over Heels about five years ago in 2012, starting off with 15 girls.
"We started out in a rink-a-dink shack. It was freezing in the winter. It was a tiny room. We're going try this out and see where it goes," Crystal said.
Head Over Heels started with their first and now senior team, the Starz. They then started their mini team, the Sparks, followed by their youth team, the Shimmerz.
"We started three short competitive seasons ago. Our first year, we went to four competitions," Crystal said.
But the girls who started at the bottom are quickly rising to the top. Last season, Head Over Heals mini team had four national titles and later found out they won the Champions Challenge, ranking them No. 1 in the nation and the teams have been winning even more titles along the way.
"Jam-fest, American Cheer Power, Athletic Gold, US Finals, NCA," Crystal said.
More recently, all three teams competed at the US finals in Kansas City. The Shimmerz scored over 95, while the Sparks got second in their division and the Starz got first.
The sport takes strength, skill, and time -- some spending several hours a week practicing and all while making some sacrifices along the way.
"I've missed my brother's soccer games. Sometimes you have to leave for competition, and I miss birthday parties at school," Taryin said.
But to the athletes, it's worth it, and said the sport has given them much more than a title.
"It makes me feel confident and proud in the whole team and myself," Taryin said.
Crystal Aranda said they are now just waiting to hear where they rank after US Finals.