Getting to know the Wildcards
- By Lin Weili
Wildcards is a cheerleading Interest Group Under the Ulu Pandan CC YEC, which aims to gather and cultivate like-minded individuals who love the sport. The team's objective lies in bringing people from all walks of life together to foster social interactions and camaraderie so that everyone not only grow in terms of the technical aspect of the sport but also to build a home where cheerleaders can associate and identify themselves with. PAYM catchs up with Chaang, one of the founding members of Wildcards, to share with us some interesting facts of this successful cheerleading team!
Lee Chaang Ru, trainer and adviser to the Wildcards Cheerleading Team
1) How did the team's name ''Wildcards'' came about and what's the current strength now?
The name ''Wildcards'' coined by Mr. Vincent Fok (Magnum Force, 2002-2005) is used to describe existing cheerleaders who are still passionate about the sport, but are no longer part of their former squad. Together with Ms Jane's (student at Anglo Chinese Junior College) assistance. Wildcards was officially formed on 26 August 2008 with 9 members. Currently the team has 50 active members and in a typical training session, there will be about 30 members coming together for practice.
2) We know Cheerleading is a sport that needs good team coordination. How does Wildcards achieve that kind of comrade and harmony within the team?
Indeed, the success of Wildcards lies primary in the strong cohesiveness and contribution from each team member. The alumni, made up of senior members, strive to maintain this comrade through effective team management and open communication, on and off the mats.
Besides that, we form sub-groups that organize regular trainings at different locations around Singapore. These sub-groups bring members together through the convenience of training near their residence. Together with the centralised training at Ulu Pandan Community Centre, members get to interact with one another on different platforms to create the kind of harmonious friendship in the team.
3) Cheerleading seems to involve a lot of jumps and flips, do I need to be very fit and athletic to be a cheerleader?
Indeed, cheerleading does involve some jumps and flips and this is what makes the sport unique. More often than not, team members are self-motivated and maintain a certain level of fitness level to perform at their best.
Take myself for example; I used to weigh 83kg before joining Wildcards. I have since lost 14kg through the twice weekly trainings and have never been healthier!
4) When people think of cheerleaders, they usually think of girls in short mini-skirts, are there male cheerleaders in the team?
Of course there are male cheerleaders in the team. In fact, they shoulder important roles to make the performances successful! Male cheerleaders are often ''bases'' executing the stunts while female cheerleaders are usually ''flyers'' doing the flips and jumps.
In the past, there is a general perception of girls in mini-skirts doing cheerleading. Some sort of a ''sissy'' sport. With the proliferation of social media, people have come to realise cheerleading is in fact a demanding sport and there is minimal gender bias. Everyone has a role to play.
5) How has your Wildcards experience changed from the time you joined till now?
The game play has certainly changed much since I first joined Wildcards. The overall cheerleading scene in Singapore has improved much over the recent years and this is actually a good thing for the sport as a whole. What it means for the team is that we need to train harder and smarter to stay on top of our game.
6) What was your most memorable moment in Wildcards?
It definitely has to be in year 2010 when the team emerged as champions at the 1st Singapore National Cheerleading Competition. Wildcards was up against fierce competition but we did our best nonetheless. Personally, this award was an affirmation of the team's comrade and passion in the sport.
7) Complete this sentence ''If I could make fulfil one wish for Wildcards, ...''
It will be sharing the joy of cheerleading with everyone!
Contact Ulu Pandan Community Club at 64693154 to find out more about Wildcards
Mr Lin Weili | Assistant Manager | Youth Movement | Youth Division |
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