Here is the inside scoop on what the director and judges are looking for…
New York Jets Flight Crew Cheerleaders
By Sasha Agent
“Who are the Flight Crew Cheerleaders? They are humble, appreciative, polite and enthusiastic ladies committed to excellence and serving as role models for Jets fans across the globe.”
“This year is the most promising yet for the Flight Crew Cheerleaders,” says Denise Garvey, entering her fifth year as the Crew’s director. “We have established ourselves in a very competitive and prominent market. The young women who are on the squad this year are very attractive, talented and entertaining women. They are the elite. There are only a few hundred women in the country who get to do what they do on this platform and this professional stage. They have embraced that responsibility and want to better the team to prepare for what is to come this year with the Jets.”
– New York Jets Flight Crew Cheerleaders
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Crowd Appeal: Within a professional organization such as the New York Jets, it is very important to select cheerleaders that are appealing to the crowd. Keep in mind that the goal of this organization is to have “attractive, talented and entertaining women” entertain the Jets fans. This means that they want dancers that will make the fans want to watch them perform. During the many pauses that exist within an exciting football game—somebody needs to maintain the energy of the stadium. So who better than cheerleaders?
- Do they look well put together?
- Do their expressions entertain the crowd and make them want to keep watching?
- Do they look like they can serve as an ambassador to the organization?
Precision: Precision, or accuracy—when it comes to dancing is extremely important. One thing to keep in mind about professional cheerleading is that pro cheerleaders are really dance teams. Most pro cheerleaders grew up in the dance studio and are very familiar with dance technique. With the Flight Crew Cheerleaders, they are looking for dancers that can perform not only as individuals, but also as a team. When watching their performances you will notice that their style is very similar to the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. Their director, Denise Garvey, was a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader and a Knicks City Dancer. So it is clear that this director knows what she is looking for in performers and knows exactly how to run a professional cheerleading team.
- Is their timing accurate with the music and counts?
- Are they capable of dancing as a team? Or do they stand out in a way that is distracting to the eye?
- Do their motions and dance moves match those of the choreographer? Or does the dancer lack the fundamentals skills when it comes to arm placement or technicality?
Power: Power when dancing is a skill that is usually universal when it comes to professional cheerleading—and the Flight Crew Cheerleaders are no different. They are looking for cheerleaders that can produce movements that are sharp, powerful and big! This is a must for the enormous stadium they are performing within.
Physical Appearance and Athletic Ability: I would hate to be a judge when it comes to scoring based on physical appearance, because how can you score looks? However, the reality is that physical appearance is another big part of being selected as a professional cheerleader. The New York Jets have beautiful women that seem to take care of their bodies. Like most professional cheerleading teams, their uniform appears to be very unforgiving, therefore it is extremely important to keep your body in tip-top shape.
- Do they look physically fit? Or will their body compliment the team uniform?
- Do they have enough stamina to perform with full energy for a 4 hour NFL game?
Professionalism: Like stated in the introduction, the Flight Crew Cheerleaders are “ humble, appreciative, polite and enthusiastic ladies committed to excellence and serving as role models for Jets fans across the globe.” This tells me that a big part of their selection relies heavily on professionalism. Within any professional organization—especially when you are expected to represent that brand, it is very important to carry yourself professionally. This means that you should appear as an individual that the team can be proud of. In most cases, cheerleaders are expected to attend appearances, thus representing the organization. This means showing up on time with a smile on your face, being able to answer questions, or handling situations in a manner that represent the team well. For more on professionalism in pro cheerleading click here.
- Can they speak to an audience in a professional manner?
- Do they show signs of being prepared? Did they show up on time with everything that was asked of them?
Technical Dance Ability: Many people think it doesn’t require any skill to be a cheerleader, however, when they show up to the open call audition, they are often times surprised. Professional cheerleading requires an extensive background in dance. In most cases, you must have some knowledge in Jazz, Pom, and Hip Hop—NFL cheerleading is usually a combination of the three. The Flight Crew Cheerleaders look like they incorporate all three dance styles.
- Does the individual demonstrate proper technique with turns, kicks, leaps, etc…?
- Are they able to catch on quickly to the choreography? Can they perform the choreography after it was taught?
- Check out the cheerleader website and become very familiar with their content. They may have tips embedded within their content.
- Study the history and current football team facts.
- Make sure you know the name of the cheerleaders’ director.
- Watch videos of the cheerleaders to study their dance style.
- Work on building stamina by doing cardio at least 4 times a week.
- Study current events.
- Experiment with hair and make up and use their current cheerleaders as a guide.
- Work on getting abs by using my fitness resources.
- Purchase/make audition attire.
- Start working on eating well-balanced meals to keep your body energized–No crash dieting or fasting!
- Take dance technique classes and choreography classes as much as you can. Check out my choreography page.
- Check out my #OperationMakeTheTeam resources for more audition help.
For more information on the New York Jets Flight Crew Cheerleaders and their audition process, click here!