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Photo of the Day – August 26

From last Saturday, Hamilton Tiger Cats Cheerleader Sara

Quick – Someone Get Roger Godell on the Phone

That’s a photo from last Sunday’s Grey Cup, the championship game for the Canadian Football League. Every Grey Cup features cheerleaders from all the CFL teams. They perform at events leading up to the game and the game itself. How awesome would it be if the NFL brought in all their cheerleading squads for the Super Bowl?

  • BC FeLions
  • Calgary Stampeders Outriders
  • Edmonton Eskimos Cheer Team
  • Hamilton Ti-Cats Cheerleaders
  • Montreal Alouttes Cheerleaders
  • Saskatchewan Rider Cheer Team
  • Toronto Argos Cheerleaders
  • Winnipeg Blue Bomber Cheer Team
  • 2012-13 Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleaders

    The Canadian Football League’s season kicked off in July, and some of the teams are finally getting around to updating their cheerleader pages. Click here to check out the 2012 Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleaders.

    2012 Ticats Cheerleaders Calendar Release Party

    [Ticats Cheerleaders]

    Ticats Cheerleader’s Calendar Photo Shoot

    The Ticats Cheerleader’s strike a pose at Ivor Wynne Stadium for their calendar photo shoot.

    [Ticats Cheerleaders]

    Audition for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleaders

    The Hamilton Tiger-Cats Football Club will be holding auditions for the 2012 Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleaders on Sunday, March 25 from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. at the Goodlife Fitness location inside of the Burlington Mall. The team is looking for 30 talented women who are interested in dancing and cheerleading, performing for an energetic crowd of 30,000 fans, taking part in community events, making new friends, and performing at the 100th Grey Cup in Toronto in November.

    All women over the age of 19 who have dance, cheer, and gymnastics backgrounds are encouraged to register for the auditions. For a full list of details and to download the registration form, visit www.ticats.ca

    Audition Date: Sunday, March 25
    Registration: 10:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m.
    Location: Goodlife Fitness in Burlington Mall – 777 Guelph Line, Burlington, Ontario
    Fee: $20

    [Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleaders]

    Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleaders Auditions are March 27th

    [Compete Audition Information]

    Dance Studio Restores Church

    By John Tapley
    Ingersoll Times

    elizabethWhile hymns no longer echo through Zion United Church near Thamesford, the building will soon be filled with music of a different sort.

    Expressions Dance Arts Inc. recently purchased the 139- year-old building, and is converting it into dance and cheerleading studio that will offer a variety of classes for ages three and up starting in September.

    “It’ll be our new hub of activity for east London and all of Oxford County,” said Elizabeth Morgan, owner and director of Expressions Dance Arts.

    In its 17th year of operation, the company already runs classes in St. Thomas, London and Goderich, offering instruction in various dance styles, from ballet to hip hop and Irish dance.

    Cheerleading is another specialty.

    “A student can study ballet and cheerleading at the same time and they’ll have good instruction in both,” Morgan said, adding that offering both dance and cheerleading instruction makes Expressions unique.

    Adult programs, including ballroom dancing and wedding choreography, are available as well.

    Fielding competitive dance and cheerleading teams, Expressions has produced provincial, national and international award winners. Its senior level-one cheer team won provincial and national championships this year, and the school’s students have earned seven national dance titles in 2010, including ballet, hip hop, musical theatre and contemporary/ lyrical. The 2010 Dance World Cup silver medalist in Irish dance also studies with Expressions.

    “Our motto is, ‘Imagine it ; achieve it,'” Morgan said. “It’s the philosophy we go by when we’re teaching.”

    While she runs a successful school, Morgan has achieved quite a bit on her own. Having studied jazz, tap and ballet since she was three years old, she branched out into hip hop and Celtic dance before getting into cheerleading when she started university. Morgan has been a cheerleading captain with the CFL’s Toronto Argonauts and Hamilton Tiger-Cats and the NFL’s Buffalo Bills.

    Maintaining her ties to those organizations, Expressions is the host studio for the 2010 Junior NFL Bills Cheerleaders in Canada.

    Some of Morgan’s students will perform at the Rogers Centre in Toronto when the Bills take on the Indianapolis Colts on Aug. 19.

    The popularity of cheerleading is growing in Canada, she said, but it still has a long way to go to reach the level it enjoys in the U.S.

    Cheerleading teaches a variety of skills, Morgan said, including teamwork, problem solving and trust.

    A team from Expressions’ studio in Goderich will travel to Walt Disney World in Florida in October for a workshop and to represent Southwestern Ontario in competition.

    Zion isn’t the first church Morgan has converted into a dance studio. Nine years ago, she undertook a similar project with a heritage church in St. Thomas.

    “We are excited to tackle this renovation and rejuvenation project (in Thamesford),” said Morgan, explaining she is happy to be able to preserve the building and that it will provide a nice “ambiance” for her students. “There’s a lot of history there.”

    Aside from running dance and cheer classes in the facility, Morgan plans to host dance birthday parties and rent the building out for special events and other arts classes.

    Already a sponsor of several charitable causes, Morgan said another goal is to become an active and valued new member of the community.

    “We hope to be a valuable part of the community and give people a place to come express themselves creatively and learn a new skill,” she said.

    Besides, she said, “Dance is just plain fun.”

    [Expression Dance Arts.com]

    Cheering for Their Team and Their Community

    More than just pretty faces

    Posted By Sean Meyer

    elizabethThe London Silverbacks are hoping to take field for the North American Football League (NAFL) ­championship game later this year.

    And should the Silverbacks find themselves in ­position to play for a championship, Elizabeth Morgan is hoping her cheerleading team will be right there beside them. In fact, the cheerleaders might even have a better chance at reaching the championship game than the Silverbacks do.

    “The NAFL has their championship weekend, which every year is in a different city. We have been invited twice now to go and perform during the halftime show at the championship game,” says Morgan, who is director of the Silverbacks cheerleaders and the owner of Expressions Dance Arts. “We have been pretty ­recognized as a skilled team, a dedicated team within the league. So we are having aspirations of doing that this year if our team makes it; we want to be cheering them on.”

    The opportunity to cheer on the Silverbacks is just one of the many reasons the cheerleading team is once again a regular fixture at ­London’s home games at TD Waterhouse Stadium. This year’s squad may only be six members strong, but with styles varying from street jazz to hip-hop to contemporary – as well as mixing in traditional CFL and NFL style cheerleading – Morgan says they will once again be putting on the best show possible for the team’s fans.

    elizabethsilver“Gameday is about a six to seven hour day for the cheerleaders. We arrive a few hours early for an ­on-field practice. We work with the football club to help with anything they need in terms of halftime activities or mini-games, anything they need help with during the game,” Morgan says. “We try to bring ­awareness to our football club, but also to the style of cheerleading these girls perform.”

    That job is one the members of the cheerleading team take seriously, despite the fact they are all ­volunteers committing a considerable amount of time. Of course, there are potential benefits for the team members as well.

    “We do it because it is a commitment to our ­community. It is a chance for the girls to perform; a lot of them have trained in dance and/or cheerleading for many years. They are either in college or have ­graduated and it is a chance for them to continue to perform,” Morgan says. “The football club is a feeder team for the Toronto Argos and I have been a CFL and NFL Cheerleader (Hamilton Ti-Cats Cheerleaders, Tornoto Arogs Cheerleaders and Buffalo Jills – james) and done choreography for the Argos cheerleaders. So this is an opportunity to train and perhaps audition to the next phase. We kind of mirror that same process the guys have for the cheerleading team.”

    Just as members of the Silverbacks hope some CFL or NFL scout might take notice of their football ability, Morgan says the members of the cheerleading team are also hoping their efforts won’t go unnoticed. ­Morgan is also quick to point out the members of the team aren’t just sitting back and waiting for good ­fortune to find them.

    “Just as an example of the commitment these girls have, one of the girls on the team, she has been a ­ballet and jazz dancer with my studio since she was three years old. She was at the National Ballet School for four years. She auditioned for Juilliard (in New York City) two years ago and made the final 12 for dance and she just completed a college diploma with a professional dance program in Vancouver,” Morgan says. “So she has come home and is looking to expand her ability to perform, to get contract work with ­different ballet companies. This is a way for her to showcase her talents and stay active in the field. You never know who might see you performing.”

    Morgan says the approximately 90 percent of the team is in their third or fourth year cheering, and that dedication is important to keep in mind considering how much work the members put in during the week.

    “Your average professional cheerleader would train between six and nine hours a week in rehearsals, between one-and-a-half to four hours a week in ­personal training and gym time and then anywhere from 3-10 hours a week in community appearances,” Morgan says. “So when you look at the amount of time they are putting in, and much of it volunteer, that is very significant, very similar to professional athletes.”

    The effort the team members put in goes beyond just what they do to prepare for a typical gameday.

    “Practices will last anywhere from three to six hours at a time. We usually do a warm up at practices. We do work on kicks, extensions, turns, things like that. We work on choreographed pieces, sidelines, team cheers. We also ­discus ambassadorships, we talk about upcoming appearances and things the girls can volunteer for. It is important to remember they put this time all in on a voluntary basis.” Morgan says. “We also balance it with community appearances, we have done things like Rib-Fest, we work with our Junior Silverbacks – that is for ages 5-16 – we help them, training them, giving them an opportunity to perform at a real sports game. Sharing some of ours skills as mentors, this is an important way to give back too.”

    When it comes to giving back to the community, the commitment of the cheerleaders puts them on par with not just the football team, but perhaps the ­average postal carrier as well.

    “The physical nature of what we do, dancing, ­kicking, jumping, tumbling, stunting, in the heat or in the snow or in the rain, is quite a feet. The girls on the team have trained for many years and we practice about once a week together,” Morgan says. “I like giving back to the community. I like grassroots programs. I think it is important for people to support community sports organizations as well. I am a London native. Even with all the travels I have done, different teams I have worked for, I really feel strong that for young people especially, we need to offer them opportunities and be good role models. This is a way to be able to do that.”

    Even at a time when dance shows are among the most popular forms of TV reality show program, ­Morgan acknowledges there are those who still don’t understand the level of commitment and athleticism it takes to be a cheerleader.

    [London Silverbacks Cheerleaders]

    Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleadrs Calendar Unveiling

    First Calendar for the Squad in Eight Years

    The 2010 Tiger-Cats Cheerleader Calendar presented by Robar Centre will be unveiled this Friday, July 2nd at 7:00 p.m. at the Jack Astor’s location at Eastgate Square in Hamilton. Join Lesley Stewart and all 21 of the 2010 Ticats Cheerleaders presented by AMJ Campbell Van Lines and be the first to get your hands on the new swimsuit calendar. Purchase your calendar for $15 and a portion of the proceeds from every calendar sold will be donated to the World Conference on Breast Cancer Foundation.


    Then, at 8:00 p.m., watch the Ticats kickoff the 2010 regular season as we take on the Winnipeg Blue Bombers at the official away game party at Jack Astor’s. The Jack Astor’s location at Eastgate Square will host the official Ticats away game party all season long. For every Ticats away game, make Jack Astor’s your destination to watch the game with other Ticats fans and for your chance to win great prizes.

    Please note that for all of these events space is limited and is subject to restaurant capacity.

    [Calendar Video Shoot]

    [Hamilton Ti-Cats Cheerleaders]

    2010 Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleader Auditions


    The Hamilton Tiger-Cats Football Club will be holding auditions for the 2010 Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleaders on Sunday, March 28 from 11:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. at the Goodlife Fitness location inside of the Burlington Mall. The team is looking for 20 talented women who are interested in dancing and cheerleading, performing for an energetic crowd of almost 30,000 fans, taking part in community events, making new friends, and traveling to the 2010 Grey Cup in Edmonton.

    All women over the age of 19 who have dance, cheer, and gymnastics backgrounds are encouraged to register for the auditions. For a full list of details and to download the registration form, visit Ticats.ca.

    All women wishing to audition for the 2010 Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleading Team must meet the following requirements:

    * You must have a dance, cheer and/or gymnastics background
    * You must be 19 years of age by November 1st, 2010
    * You must be available for two rehearsals per week from April to December at Goodlife Fitness in Burlington. Rehearsals will take place every Monday and Thursday night from 7:30 p.m. until 10:00 p.m.
    * You must be available for all Hamilton Tiger-Cats home games in the 2010 season. Click here to view the schedule.
    * You must be available for Grey Cup Weekend in Edmonton, Alberta – Thursday, November 25 – Monday, November 29, 2010
    * You must have graduated secondary school
    * You must be physically fit and healthy
    * You must be available for a post-audition interview on either Tuesday, March 30 or Wednesday, March 31. Interviews will last for approximately 10 minutes and all women auditioning will have the opportunity to pick a time slot from 4:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. on those dates

    What to Wear

    All women auditioning for the 2010 Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleading Team should come dressed in proper attire:

    * All black dance wear – half top and leggings (no baggy tops or pants)
    * Dance or sports shoes
    * Camera ready hair and make-up

    What to Bring

    Please bring the following items with you to the audition:

    * Photo Identification
    * Current photo (if you haven’t submitted one online)
    * Bottled water
    * Lunch or snacks
    * Resume

    What We Are Looking For

    There are a number of qualities in a Hamilton Tiger-Cats Cheerleader that we will be looking for at the audition:

    * Strong performer
    * Positive attitude
    * Dedication
    * Team player
    * Outgoing personality
    * Eagerness to work hard and have fun

    [Ti-Cats Cheerleaders Auditions Info]

    Five Questions with Former CFL Cheerleader Robyn Baldwin

    We’re starting a new weekly (hopefully) feature called “Five Questions with…”

    We’re happy to kickoff the new feature with blogger, fitness competitor and former CFL Cheerleader Robyn Baldwin.

    Growing up Robyn was a dancer. She was formally trained in Ballet and grew up performing in full length ballets with her school (Les Petits Ballet) in Ottawa.

    In 2004 Robyn cheered for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. When she cheered for Hamilton it was an outdoor stadium. The uniform had long sleeve tops and full pants and the cheerleaders called them “the snow suits”, in the summer they were sweltering but the uniforms did their job and kept the ladies from being cold in the Fall. Robyn says while it was fun cheering outside, however, she learned to give up the lip gloss or her hair would be blown by the wind and stick to her lips.

    The next year she graduated from McMaster University with an Honours Bachelor of Commerce (major in Marketing) and a minor in Political Science. She moved to Toronto after graduation and cheered for the Toronto Argonauts in 2006

    Robyn in her Argos Cheerleader uniform

    Today Robyn works in advertising. She’s a media supervisor for a large size advertising agency in Toronto. It’s the financial, strategic side of the business. She tries to figure out based on consumer behavior and media habits how the media budgets are best spent.

    She’s also a fitness competitor and model. She was featured in the February/March 2010 of Inside Fitness Canada as one of Canada’s Hot and Fit 100.

    1. How do you make time for your day job, modeling, working out and competitions?

    I am a great multitasker. Since I was in High School I’ve always been overly involved in as many activities as possible. In High School it was student’s council, running leadership camps, singing in the choir, musical theatre, and band. In University it was no different, musical theatre, dance club, cheering for the Ticats (in my 4th year) and business clubs such as organizing the McMaster World Congress and launching McMaster’s Apprentice program took up alot of my spare time outside of class. When I moved into the working world I still wanted a life outside of the office. Cheerleading for the Argos was a great escape and passion for me. Now that I’m older I still wanted a new hobby and passion to have outside of my career. I discovered fitness. Since University I’ve always been a gym rat but never a dedicated one. In January 2009 I made a commitment to a healthier lifestyle. I’ve been eating clean, lifting weights and pursuing a second career as a fitness model and competitor. I’ve learned true time management and I get up a lot earlier! Right now I’m in the gym at 6:30am lifting weight with my trainer, then it’s off to work. I may do yoga or cardio at lunch time or research a new blog for my website. Then after work I do 20-30mins of cardio and home I go to relax, do food prep and pack my gym bag to do it all over again for the next day. I also dedicate Sunday afternoons to grocery shopping and the majority of my meal prep time. I’ve been modeling since University as a hobby so I’ve know for a while how to schedule shoots. I just make sure to work it out w/ photographers to shoot on weekends or in the evenings after work.

    2. What do you hope folks take away from your fitness posts and vlogs?

    I was inspired to find fitness by a cover model for Oxygen Magazine. Ashley Harrison was on the cover in January 2009. She cheered for the Ticats in 2005. All it took for me was looking at the photo and saying “why can’t I look like that too?” Through my blog posts about fitness and my vlogs about my training I hope to inspire at least one person to try a new exercise, get motivated to go to the gym or simply take little steps to feeling healthier. If I can inspire someone else to try a fitness competition as an end goal to a healthier lifestyle then it would be my pleasure. Getting comments on my pictures on facebook or about my gym tweets on twitter or about my vlogs means the world to me. Having someone tell me for the first time that I inspired them gave me more goosebumps then stepping on stage for the first time.

    3. What made you decide to become a fitness competitor?

    I decided to become a fitness competitor because I love having goals. Having a time line to get fit really pushes you to take control of your eating habits and fitness level. I like having that date to track my workouts so I know how hard to push myself so that I can build more muscle. I also love the feeling of being on stage. I’m a performer so I crave those spotlights! I also like the community that it has. The women and men are very supportive towards each other and meeting people at workshops or at the shows have created great new friendships in my life. Just like cheerleading… There are some girls from my 2004 and 2006 teams that I still talk to on the daily and will always be a part of my life. Fitness competitions have provided that too which is awesome.

    Robyn in her first fitness competition.

    4. How have you done so far?

    My greatest accomplishment so far in the fitness contest circuit was placing top 10 in the UFE Halloween Mayhem 2009 show in October. I competed 5 times last year. 2 times I have no idea how I placed. 2 times I placed top 10 and 1 time I placed dead last. Each time I learned something new, went through emotional roller coasters but definitely learned that I can always improve and that I definitely am hooked on competing. I also learned that your placements doesn’t define who you are or your career in the fitness industry. Obviously I want to win. I’m a competitive person but I’m still loving the journey, process and how far I’ve come so far.

    5. What plans do you have for 2010?

    I would love to get my WBFF pro card and continue competing. I am what you call a hardgainer. So although when my metabolism changed and I developed “skinny fat”. It’s really hard for me to put on muscle. I have already gained 5 lbs since December 2009. My goal is another 10 lbs of muscle by July 2010.

    I am creating my vision board for 2010. In addition to 2010 competitions, I would love to get published in more magazines. A cover with Oxygen would be a dream came true as that’s where it all started. I would like to create more fun vlogs and possibly do some writing for the fitness magazine and online world.

    I plan to thrive at my media career and prove to myself that I can really do it all. My blog has three aspects to it that are centered around being an Alpha Female. I talk about fitness and how I stay healthy and active to be able to accomplish my career and fitness competing. I talk about career tips and then I talk about social media which helps me balance all my obligations, find new opportunities and manage my personal brand.

    I also want to throw in some travel just to be able to experience new places as well. I’ll fit it all in for sure.

    From Inside Fitness: One of Canada’s Hot and Fit 100

    [Follow Robyn on Twitter]


    If you’ve got a suggestion for who we should talk to next, email us (james@procheerleaderblog.com or sasha@procheerleaderblog.com)