I was a middle school cheerleader and experienced tumbler. In December of 2007 I started having some back pain. While everyone told me it was just my hamstring and not to worry about it, as time passed my back pain worsened. By the end of my seventh grade school year my pain had became really bad. Although we tried everything from physical therapy to steroids shots, nothing helped. By the end of the summer of 2008, we went to the doctor and decided that the only way I was ever going to get back in the sport I love was by having a partial discectomy. I had the surgery in August of 2008. All through recovery of the surgery and basic physical therapy, I held on to my goal of making the High School cheerleading squad. Tryouts were scheduled for March of 2009. At the beginning of the second semester of eighth grade, my doctor released me and I began sports therapy.

After telling my sports therapist my goal of trying out for the High School cheer squad in the spring, she connected me with Brandi. In January of 2009, with great anticipation and excitement, I began working with Brandi on my cheer and tumbling skills. My hope was that I could regain the skills that I had lost. She started with the basics of developing my core strength. As my muscles got stronger and I gained confidence, she would move me on to more advanced things. She encouraged me when I was scared and cautioned me when I was too eager and my body wasn’t ready. As a result of listening to her, acting on her advice, and being diligent in doing my “homework”, I went from doing cartwheels to round-off back handspring back tucks in just a few months. So what’s the bottom line of my experience? With Brandi’s help, I went from re-learning my cartwheel to making the High School cheerleading team in just three short months. Go Chaps!


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