14th Mar 2017
TWO Dyke House cheerleaders will be heading to the land of the rising sun to have fun on a global stage later this year.
Year 11 students Ellie Lewis and Meghan Simpson, who both compete for Hartlepool Hawks, will be going to Japan in November for the World Cheerleading Championships.
The good friends will be joined by three other Hawks members, Ellie Jones, 13, Leah Wintersgill, 13, and Lauren May, 16, when they travel to the Far East for the week long stay and they can't wait.
Ellie and Meghan, both aged 15, will be performing together to a remix of songs. And Ellie said: We had to show our skills at trials in Manchester and that we were good enough to get on the Team UK team, both individually and in groups.
We worked with new people and they kept an eye on us to see if we mingled. We mingled well!
The girls have been with the Hawks for three years and have loved every minute so a trip to Japan for such a big event is exciting.
Meghan said: We will be doing stunts, jumps and tumbles plus a dance section. There will be a cheering chant too and the routine lasts 2 minutes and 30 seconds. We are going to train exceptionally hard for it.
Cheerleading stunts can be dangerous, but the girls think the bumps and bruises they pick up are worth it.
I got elbowed in the face the other day and needed stitches, but I'd rather get hurt than my flyer, said Ellie, who tends to catch other cheerleaders during the stunts along with Meghan.
I love it, though. It's all about trust. When I started it was a hobby but the longer I have done it the more risks I have wanted to take when I put myself out on stage.
Meghan has also had her injuries. She said: When a flyer came down they head-butted my nose! Things like that can happen when you are training as much as we do.
We train every single day, sometimes until 10pm at night. I did it because it was something new to try and I love it.
The girls are two-time national champions with the Hawks and they finished fourth at the European Championships in Slovenia last year.
Ellie added: We have competitions in Manchester this weekend for UK Cheerleading Association and if we win we will go to Croatia because we will have qualified for the Europeans again. What a year that would be.