How Much Does Competitive Cheerleading Cost?

Written by: Staff

With high school cheerleading, you will usually do one or two competitions a year, and the rest of the time will just be cheering on the sidelines or during halftime of a game.  Also, high school cheer is mostly motions and maybe some stunts and tumbling.

If you do not want to be on the high school cheer team, however, then the next viable option is to join a competitive cheer league.

This will type of league will offer you more opportunities to compete with other squads, do more challenging stunts, build your self-esteem and meet new people.

Sussex Tornados Cheerleaders by wallygrom, on Flickr
Sussex Tornados Cheerleaders” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by  wallygrom

How much does competitive cheerleading cost?

To start competitive cheerleading, plan on paying registration fees, a uniform, shoes and practice clothes.  On top of these startup fees, a monthly fee, depending on your level, will have to be budgeted.  Aside from the start up fees, plan on spending at least $75 to $200 per month to cheer in a competitive setting.   The yearly costs for competitive cheerleading, on average, can range from $2,000 to as much as $4,300; this would include everything necessary to participate with the club.

As for the startup costs, most registration fees will cost $50 to $100, while the uniform, shoes and practice clothes can cost anywhere from $300 to $500.  The costs of these clothes will depend on the requirement, brand, and the type of clothing needed.  As a safe budget, most cheerleaders who start to competitive cheer spend at least $500 in their first month alone.  Overall, the costs are going to greatly depend on how much the team is going to travel for the year and the level of competition in which they participate.

According to one mom on Yahoo! Answers, she paid a $100 monthly fee, an $850 competition fee per year and $500 for the uniform.   Other fees included makeup, bows, yearly banquets, parties, and traveling costs.  She stated that the average competitive cheer member should be prepared to spend at least $3,000 or more a year.

Dynasty Athletic All-Stars, according to this PDF, is compromised of 12 months payments of $159, totaling $1,908.  This would include all of the fees relating to choreography, coaching, music, camp and a one-week tumbling class.  Aside from this annual fee, a uniform fee of $575 is also payable in two payment.

According to this article, parents usually pay between $2,000 and $3,000 in annual tuition and competition fees for an all-star program.  This doesn’t include the costs of the uniforms, which could add hundreds more.

Competitive cheerleading overview

Competitive cheerleading is a regulated sport that is compromised of many age groups.

With the exception of travel, competitive cheer is going to be a lot like high school cheerleading.  Competitive cheer coaches will look for cheerleaders who can master dancing, cheering, certain motions, jumps, pyramids, stunts and tumbling.  Depending on the team, a practice can be held multiple times a week.

Any competition that is held is generally overlooked by the NACCC and/or USASF.

What are the extra costs?

Competitive cheerleading outfits can cost anywhere from $300 to $500.

Anytime the cheer team enters a competition, a competition fee will have to be paid, which can vary anywhere from $100 to as much as $1,000 or more.

Hotels, airline tickets and other accommodations, if the competition is far away, should be budgeted.  The price will depend on how far you will need to travel.

A practice outfit can cost up to $100 when you factor in the shirt, bra, and shorts.

Shoes can cost an average of $50 to $110.

Music and choreography can cost upwards of $250.

Bows and make-up can cost upwards of $125.

Some may have a one-time tryout fee that can cost upwards of $75.

Tips to know

If your child is eve semi-interested in competitive cheer, have them watch videos online to see what competitions look like.  A simple search for “USASF” can yield some good videos.

Before joining a team, try to find out how many members they have as well as how many competitions they attend in a year.  You are going to want to find a team that does not keep you too busy or does not go to enough tournaments.  If you are just starting out, you may want to find a team that does less than most teams.

Even if you find a team, it does not mean you will be able to join.  Many leagues have tryouts that are only held during certain times during the year.

Some leagues may force you to sign a contract to commit for a year.

Always try to find out how far they often travel for competitions.  Some places try to keep the competitions within a few hours, while others will not have any boundaries.

It is very helpful to have a background of gymnastics and dance or both.  This will greatly aid in your ability for competitive cheerleading.

How can I save money?

With anything in life, try your hardest to talk with at least three leagues.  While you do not want to focus on the price, try to learn about what they do, what their philosophies are and again, how many competitions in which they participate.

If the league allows it, try to purchase your uniforms for half the cost.

Competitive cheer is always going to be a lot more than cheering at a high school.  If you are on a tight budget, you may want to consider having your child simply through the high school program.

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