2016-17 AACCA High School Cheerleading Safety Rules

We are in the process of converting the new rules to html format.

The PDF of the new rules can be downloaded here:  [2016-2017 School Rules].

Summary of the rules changes for the 2016-17 school year:


Partner Stunts:

C.1: Spotters are now only required to be in position for extended static stunts, in other words, when the top stops extended and the bases are bearing the top person’s weight. In “Show and Go” style stunts, the top is not balancing in the extended position. This rule change will allow the spotters in Show and Go stunts that 1/2 around to an extended stunt to be in the proper position for the ending extended stunt without requiring an additional spotter behind the initial Show and Go. *Note that this is an AACCA-only rule. At this time, the NFHS has not adopted this rule.

C.12: The previous “low to high tick tock” release rule has been revised to allow other vertical releases from prep level. The rule still requires that the top person remain vertical and that the release is initiated from prep level, not from a load or from an extended stunt. The stunt may land in a load, prep level or extended. The difference is that the top may now start on one or both feet and may land on one or both feet. This rule change allows for better progression into the tick tock release. The top may twist during the release as before. This rule change clarifies that any twist during the release is limited to 1 1/4 twists.

C.13.b: In transitions from a stunt to a split position, the previous rule requiring four bases has been changed to three bases.

C.18: In dismounts to the performing surface that involve a skill, there must still be at least two people (bases or spotters) in position to assist the top person, but only one is required to assist the top. This rule allows the secondary catcher to assist by catching the top person’s waist, elbow, upper arm, the base’s hand, or not assist if not needed without getting a penalty.


.D4 and D.5 Braced Rolls: Braced rolls no longer require two bracers in double based preps. They are now viewed as any other pyramid, like braced inversions, and are subject to the general pyramid rules. Since they are a pyramid transition that is not released, they can be braced on one side, that brace doesn’t have to be hand/arm, the bracer is not required to be in any specific skill, and the bracer is not required to have a spotter. This rule change will allow teams with fewer members to perform pyramids such as braced flatback roll-ups and braced pancakes using as few as six members.

D.5 Braced Flips: Two bracers are still required and must be double based preps with spotters. However, these bracers are no longer required to be on opposite sides of the top person being flipped. Both arms of the top person must still be connected to a bracer. This will allow other bracer positions, such as one bracer behind the top person and one bracer beside the top person.

D.6.c: A static inversion, such as a handstand or shoulder inversion at prep level, may release to a stunt at prep level or below. This release requires a spotter. With this rule change, an inversion may now be released to a prep, load, cradle, or the ground. An inversion may not release to an extended position without being braced.

D.6.f: During inversions that are transitioning to a non-inverted position, the upper body can be released by the bases prior to the top person becoming non-inverted. This rule change allows safe performance of these skills without being called on a technicality.

D.6.g: Dismounts from inversions may make up to 1/4 twist. This 1/4 twist is also allowed in releases from inversions to stunts (D.6.c) and will improve transition options during these skills.


E.3: All extended stunts may now brace each other, including Liberties. There is a requirement that the bracing is a hand/arm to hand/arm brace, which means that Paper Dolls may be performed, but only if each Liberty is connected to the other Liberty’s arm/wrist. The bracer cannot be holding the connected Liberty’s leg.

Tumbling and Jumps:

G.5.b: A participant may hold poms during back tucks and aerials. *Note that this is an AACCA-only rule. At this time, the NFHS has not adopted this rule.