CHEER EXPRESS LOOKS TO TURN SILVER, INTO GOLD
OLDSMAR, FL – In the Tampa suburb of Oldsmar, owner & coach Kimberly Dickenson has been training athletes at her Cheer Express All Stars for fourteen seasons. The program year after year finds themselves to be amongst the most competitive across all levels in the region and nationally. The gym trains between 120 and 155 athletes fielding nine teams. Every year since 2006, the program has fielded a Senior Level 5 Worlds eligible team. The program is historically known for impeccable technique, and flawless flexibility from flyers.
This year the Cheer Express Miss Silver team has emerged as a dominant force in the new Senior Extra Small All Girl 5 division. The team has won at every major National event over the 2017/2018 season, including: JAMFEST Super Nationals, CHEERSPORT Nationals, NCA All Star Nationals, UCA All Star Nationals – winning the Varsity All Star Triple Crown title.
Visiting with gym owner and head coach Kimberly Dickenson we learned about the team’s goals and gained a unique perspective into what they think of this year including everything that they have achieved up to present day.
Gym Owner and Coach Kimberely Dickenson, admits that at the completion of the 2017 Cheerleading World Championships she had it in her mind that it was likely her last attempt fielding a Worlds Team. She says of her program, “we don’t have the depth, we don’t have Youth 5, or Junior 5 teams to continue to replenish our worlds team”. Dickenson, who says that she’s very realistic about what the team’s goals were; she added that it was every year to simply make Top 10 in their division. Dickenson, described the announcement of the addition of an Extra Small Division at The World Championships as “fate, it could not have come at a more sweeter time.”
Dickenson describes their season this year as being “a dream”. She advises her team to always go into every performance humbly. Reminding them that “nothing is given to you, everyone has worked hard.” She says the team has spent time focusing on the journey, not the destination in speaking of how a season progresses. Dickenson tells us that the team was originally fielded with 14 athletes, the maximum permitted in the new Extra Small Division. But like every team competing at the highest level, the inevitable strikes and athletes leave or are unable to continue for various reasons. Dickenson is confident in her 11 athletes, adding that they will represent Cheer Express well at the World Championship saying, “we do this until we can’t get it wrong.” She says up until the final weeks of the season, the team has lacked a general sense of confidence. “I counter their confidence issues by questioning their statements.. I ask if they can provide evidence that the World Championship could or should end any differently than any of their previous events this year.” she says. “I’ve finally got them to a point where they are appreciating the validation that they are good” says Dickenson.
In speaking of The 2018 World Championships, Dickenson tells her team “Do not do this for me. Go write your own story, and regardless of how this ends I’m going to love you unconditionally.” Dickenson says like every all star cheerleader, and gym owner she would love to win the World Championship title, but it will not define the time they have spent together this year. “At this point, I’d be grateful for a globe of ANY color” adds Dickenson. The fan support this season is “100% felt” she says of the uplifting and motivating push the team has felt since the onset of the season. Dickenson in closing reminds us of the importance of stepping out of your comfort zone, albeit scary, at the same time it can be so rewarding. She says, “I’ve never coached a team of 14, let alone 11, but I’ve grown so much as a coach in learning new tactics and approach to being successful.”
Miss Silver, Cheer Express, Dickenson and her staff look to make history at the 2018 Cheerleading World Championships held at Disney’s Walt Disney World Resort April 28-30, 2018. The team will face their toughest competition yet, as they mentally try to overcome their own fears and apprehensions in a division with several contenders ready to jump at any given opportunity.
Follow their journey, and keep an eye on your favorite Teams & Programs on our Live! Worlds Central.
Learn more about Cheer Express All Stars http://www.cheerexpress.org/
Follow them on Twitter: @CheerExpressFLA
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