The new 2012-13 AACCA Cheerleading Safety Rules are published. These rules are very similar to the new NFHS rules that have been approved and will be published in their Spirit Rules Book.
The summary of changes are as follows:
- Released twists are now limited to 1 ¼ . That means no more double downs or kick doubles. You can still do a 1 ½ up type of skill where the top stays in contact with a base.
- Allowed: All inversions that keep the weight-bearing contact below shoulder level. In addition to the handstands from cradle or prone position allowed in last year’s rules, this will allow yo-yos, handstand on a double base thigh stand, cartwheel over the thighs, etc. There are some requirements on these such as having contact at all times, protecting the head area and if the skill is below shoulders AND moving downward there must be two people in contact. An example would be a cradle to back walkover. This does NOT allow the fold-over “pancake” stunt from shoulder level.
- Allowed: Suspended front and back flips/rolls when braced on both sides by preps with spotters. The top person must have at least three bases/spotters and is not allowed to twist.
- Allowed: Backward suspended roll from the ground to the ground (have to allow leadup for suspended braced flip)
- Single base shoulder stands where the feet of the top person are in the hands of the base now require a spotter.
- Removed “downward” wording on Released Pyramid Transitions. This aligns our rule with NFHS rule, so spotters on bracers, etc. are required any time there is a braced release, not just on the ones that are released from the top to the bottom.
- Renamed the basketball court restrictions section to “Surface Restrictions”.
- In keeping with the NFHS changes as well as using information provided to us by the NFHS Medical Advisory Committee, we are allowing baskets, tumbling fulls, and one-arm stunts only on mats, grass or rubberized tracks. This still restricts them from the basketball court but allows them on the rubberized track. The data over two years shows that the majority of head injuries are body-to-body contact and not the performing surface.
- Inversions section moved after Partner Stunts and Pyramids
- Added that a base cannot assume a backbend, handstand or headstand position (Aligns AACCA rules with NFHS)
- Added a rule for spotters that consolidates other spotter rules and clarifies where they can and cannot be.
- Added a restriction on spotters that they can’t have their hands behind their back. Note that if a spotter of a prep had their hands behind their back, there’s no illegality. The prep doesn’t require a spotter in the first place.
- Added a “release stunt” rule that says if you fully release a stunt it must be cradled or braced. (Aligns AACCA rules with NFHS). Exception is 180 degree helicopter. This means for any half-up or full-up skill from a stunt, a base or spotter must remain in contact.
- Along with the above rule, we changed the “multibase toss to a stunt” rule to basically only allow quick tosses to land in stunts. An exception in the wording still allows switch libs specifically.
- Combined the previous splits rules (splits from thighs have hand to hand contact and splits from prep, load-in, etc. have to have four people under it) into one rule.
- Changed wording on swinging stunt to allow it to begin from below shoulder level. This just allows a little more freedom for where to start it, like from a thigh stand, cradle, one foot on the ground, laying down, etc.
The actual rules are also detailed on this site by section from the dropdown menus at the top of this page. If there are more details about a specific rule, including Q&A, Interpretations, Photos or Video to help explain the rule, there will be a red “more…” link associated with that rule, like this: (more…)
If you have a question about these rules, please find the section from the “AACCA HS” dropdown menu and post in the comments there. If there is already a Q&A page for that rule, post in the comments section there.
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