Spirit Rules Changes - 2016-17
By NFHS on April 27, 2016
Cheer and Dance/Drill/Pom will now follow completely separate performance safety rules.
Rule 1 – DEFINITIONS (All spirit groups)
Rule 2 – GENERAL RISK MANAGEMENT (All spirit groups)
Rule 3 – CHEERLEADING RISK MANAGEMENT (Cheerleading only)
Rule 4 – DANCE/DRILL/POM RISK MANAGEMENT (Dance/Drill/Pom only)
Note: Rule changes and additions are underlined; Old language is lined through. *Asterisk indicates that the rule number will change with book reorganization.
1-Definition: Bracer – “A top person
and/or assists is connected to another top person.”
1-Definition: Cradle Position (NEW) – “A face-up open-pike position.”
1-Definition: Quick Toss – “A release that begins with the top person
in having both feet in weight-bearing contact
with the performing surface and ends in a partner stunt or pyramid.”
*2-4-7: A spotter is required for extended stunts except for the following:
b. Russian lift
d. Double-base split catch
e. Double-base vertical T-lift
f. Triple-base stunts in which the top person is horizontal
g. Triple-base suspended splits
h. Triple-base straddle sit in which the top person has both hands in contact with a post.
(Note: f. All bases of triple-base Swedish fall are no longer required to face the top person.)
*2-5-2: ART. 2 (NEW) . . .An inverted top person may pass through an extended position, but must not begin, end, pause, or stop in a static extended inverted position.
*2-5-3 a, b: ART. 3 . . .Braced inversions in a pyramid that do not flip
or roll are permitted provided the following
conditions are met:
a. Braced inversions that do not release must follow non-release stunt Rule *2-6.
b. Braced inversions that release must follow release transition Rule *2-7- 5.
(Note: Old a. was deleted, meaning that braced flips can start from a single base.)
*2-5-4: ART. 4 . . .Braced flips
or rolls in
a pyramid are allowed provided all the following conditions are met:
a. The top person maintains continuous hand-to-hand/arm contact with
a bracer on each side two
bracers who are in multi-base preps with a spotter. The top person is
not behind the bracers.
*2-5-5: ART. 5 . . . In all other inversions:
Old a. replaced by new Art 2
a. A top person in an inverted position on the performing surface may be released to a loading position below prep level. (old exception to b.)
b. Static inversions at prep level require two bases or a base and spotter. The spotter is not required to be in contact with the top person.
c. A release transition from a static inverted position to a non-inverted position is allowed provided:
1. The top person lands at or below prep level.
2. The top person does not twist more than ¼ rotation.
3. There is a spotter.
d. In inversions in which the base of support begins and remains below prep level:
1. At least one base or spotter must be in a position to protect the head/neck of the top person. (old b.-no change)
2. The base or spotter must maintain contact with the top person’s upper body (waist and above, which may include arms/hands) until the top person is no longer inverted or his/her hands are on the performing surface. The contact must be sufficient to stabilize/control the top person’s position.
e. In inversions where the base of support begins at or passes through prep level: (old c.-no change)
1. At least two people on the performing surface must be in a position to protect the head/neck of the top person.
2. The bases/spotters must maintain contact with the top person’s upper body (waist and above, which may include arms/hands) until the top person is no longer inverted or his/her hands are on the performing surface. The contact must be sufficient to stabilize/control the top person’s position.
EXCEPTION: In a foldover stunt, the top person may initiate the inversion without upper body contact.
3. The top person must not go directly to an inverted position on the performing surface from a prep level or higher.
f. When the stunt begins in an inversion and goes to a non-inverted position, the upper body contact may be released before the top person is no longer inverted.
g. Dismounts from inverted stunts to a cradle or an upright position on the performing surface are permitted provided the top person begins in a static or “pump and go” position (i.e., handstand) and
perform any skill (e.g., toe touches, twists, etc.)does no more than a
one-quarter turn. Dismounts to the performing surface from shoulder height
or above must follow Rule *2-9-2.
*2-6-3 Also Rule 4: ART. 3 (NEW) . . . A participant must not jump unassisted onto the back of a base who is in a horizontal position.
3 4 . . In
pyramids where one static extended stunt braces another static extended stunt
the connection must be hand/arm to hand/arm.
*2-7-2 New b: ART 2 . . .In all release stunts and tosses:
b. (new) The top person must not land in an inverted position.
*2-7-4: ART 4 (NEW) . . . A switch liberty is permitted as an exception to Art *2-7-2 and *2-7-3
*2-7-5b: ART. 5 . . . Release transitions are permitted provided all of the following conditions are met throughout the transition:
b. The top person maintains hand-to-hand/arm contact with at least one bracer except for the following:
1. A non-braced top person in a vertical position at prep level may be released to a stunt at any level provided the top person remains vertical.
2. A non-braced top person in a cradle position or horizontal position at prep level or below may be released to a loading position or stunt prep level or below.
ART 8 . . . A top person in a
flatback position shoulder height or below or in a cradle may be released to a
loading position or stunt shoulder height or below.
*2-7-11: ART. 11 . . . (NEW) A quick toss is permitted.
*2-8-2: ART 2 . . .Non-braced suspended splits that originate from or pass through prep level or above are permitted provided …”:
a. …At least
four three bases slow
the momentum of the top person.
b. The top person has both hands in contact with a base(s) once she reaches the full split position.
c. At least
three two of the bases
support under the top person’s legs, and the fourththird base
may support under the legs or be in contact with the top person’s hands.
*2-9-3: Dismounts to the performing surface from shoulder height or above that involve a skill (e.g. toe touch, twist, etc.) require
from two bases or a base and a spotter. Assistance is required
from at least one base or spotter. This assistance must be sufficient
to slow the momentum of the top person.
*2-12 (NEW): SECTION 12 (NEW) CHEERING ON PROPS AS BASES
ART. 1 . . .The height of the prop must not exceed 3 feet.
ART. 2 . . .Jumps and/or stunts are not permitted on props.
(NEW) Rule 4: The following stunts and releases will not be permitted in Dance/Drill/Pom.
ART. Stunts/lifts in which base(s) support(s) an extended top person under the foot/feet.
ART. Braced release stunts and braced release transitions
ART. Braced flips
ART. Switch Liberties
ART. Single base stunts in which the base is the only primary support for two extended top persons
ART. Single base stunts in which the base uses only one arm to support an extended top person.
Note: These restrictions are intended to minimize risk for high school dancers who are generally not properly trained to execute higher level stunts, releases and inversions that require lead-up skills and progressions.
*3-1-5b: Art. 5…Dance, drill and pom teams must wear footwear that is appropriate for the activity.
a. At minimum footwear must cover the ball of the foot.
EXCEPTION: Dancers who perform on a floor cover may be barefoot.
b. Footwear that covers the entire foot /feet with non-slip soles must be worn for the following.
1. Stunts/lifts at prep level or above in which the top person’s foot/feet are in the hand(s) of a base(s).
2. Airborne tumbling with the exception of front and side aerials
3-7 Delete Section:
SECTION 7 – ASSISTED INVERTED
(Note: This section is no longer needed; inversion rules apply)