Advice for Another Year of Dance and Cheer from NFL Cheerleader Jessie McLaughlin

Jessie McLauglin's HeadshotAs dancers and performers, it can at times be difficult to find a healthy balance between focusing on school work, reaching our dance goals for the season, and maintaining a social life for our own sanity. Here are a few tips and tricks I am using to help me prepare for my first season as a NFL Cheerleader. These five tips can also help you get ready for back to school, dance and cheer this year.

1. Setting Goals – At the beginning of each year I like to make a list of things I want to achieve over the next few months. Make sure to have a balance of short term goals, as well as long term goals, and at the end of the year you can reflect back and feel great about all of your amazing accomplishments!

2. Staying Motivated  One of my favorite tips for getting pumped up is listening to different motivational speeches! I love listening to these casually when I’m driving to school, NFL cheer practice or when I’m getting myself ready in the morning. I also highly recommend working this into your workout or stretching playlist! At those moments when we can sometimes lack motivation it definitely helps fuel your fire to never quit. This applies to dance, cheer, school or any challenges life throws at you this year!

3. Meal Prep – As students and as dancers, when we eat clean we feel better, think better, and perform better. The night before a long day of school and dance, take the time to set aside all of your favorite healthy snacks and meals. This eliminates the urge to buy an unhealthy vending machine snack because you are unprepared with good food to fuel your day of tests or training! And never forget to hydrate!

4. Organization – Keeping a personal planner is one of the best tricks to staying organized and stress free. Tracking your important dates for auditions, dance classes, school work due dates, and travel dates will ensure that you are always on time and never double book an event for the same day. It will also allow you to see areas where you are spending too much time or areas where you need to spend more time.

5. Rest – When we are putting our bodies through hours of grueling dance practices, and our brains are turned on all day long at school, take the time to treat your body. Don’t underestimate the power of an Epsom salt bath, foam rolling for 30 minutes, and getting 8 hours of sleep. Allow yourself time to recover, I promise your body will thank you!

~ Jessie McLaughlin

Follow Jessie’s journey as a NFL Cheerleader by following her on Instagram at @jessie_sbk.

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