I've had this conversation enough times to know that some ladies are about to get really worked up about this.
That having been said, no offense should be taken. I love cheerleaders, I really do. They're great.
But cheerleading still isn't a sport. I didn't make the decision (although I agree with it), the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals did.
Why does it matter so much that a major appellate court felt the need to weigh in on the topic?
Well, Title IX states that college sports programs have to provide equal opportunities to male and female athletes. When Quinnipiac University tried to drop their women's volleyball program, they attempted to replace those lost opportunities with other options, including 30 positions on their new cheerleading team.
Some folks rightfully questioned cheerleading's status as an actual sport. If it were an actual sport, there would be no problems. If not, then Quinnipiac basically just took away a ton of opportunities from female athletes and violated Title IX rules.
The case made it all the way to a federal district judge back in 2010, where he ruled that cheerleading was indeed NOT a sport.
It was appealed, and now the appellate court has confirmed the previous ruling.
Now I'm not saying that cheerleading isn't awesome, or that cheerleaders aren't awesome, or that you're not allowed to enjoy it, whether as an active participant or merely a spectator.
I'm just saying that it's not a sport. And the law is on my side.
p.s. The Quinnipiac volleyball team is still alive and well.