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From Tryouts to Performances: The Journey to Becoming an NBA Cheerleader

Becoming an NBA cheerleader is a dream come true for many individuals who aspire to dance and represent their favorite teams. Cheerleaders are a vital component of the NBA’s game-day experience, as they engage the audience with their dance routines and serve as role models for aspiring young girls.

In this article, we will discuss the job description of NBA cheerleaders, their pay, and factors that influence their salaries.

Job Description of NBA Cheerleaders

Dance Routines and Stunts: One of the primary responsibilities of an NBA cheerleader is to perform dance routines and stunts during game breaks. These routines are choreographed to perfection, requiring precision, coordination, and fitness.

Cheerleaders are trained to execute stunts like lifts, flips, and pyramids, which add an element of excitement and thrill to every game. With each performance, cheerleaders aim to boost the energy of the crowd and inspire their teams to perform better.

Audience Engagement: In addition to dance routines, NBA cheerleaders are responsible for engaging the audience and creating an interactive experience. They lead the crowd in cheers, chants, and dance moves to encourage team spirit and establish a connection with the audience.

Cheerleaders also interact with fans, take photos, and sign autographs to create a memorable experience for attendees, and represent their respective teams positively. Representation of Teams: NBA cheerleaders represent their teams both on and off the court.

They are ambassadors for their organizations and serve as role models for young girls who dream of becoming cheerleaders. Cheerleaders are expected to maintain a professional and positive image at all times, ensuring that they inspire and impress fans both on and off the court.

NBA Cheerleaders Pay

Average NBA Cheerleader Pay: The average salary of an NBA cheerleader ranges between $75 to $150 per game, depending on the team. Many cheerleaders work part-time or seasonally and are paid by the game, while some teams offer annual contracts or monthly salaries.

High-Paying NBA Teams: Some NBA teams offer their cheerleaders higher pay than others. For example, the New York Knicks and the Atlanta Hawks are among the teams that pay their cheerleaders the highest salary in the league.

Factors Affecting NBA Cheerleaders’ Pay

Market Size: The market size of a team’s fan base has a significant impact on cheerleader salaries. Teams with larger fan bases can generate more revenue, and this often translates into higher cheerleader salaries.

Team Success: The success of a team can also play a role in the cheerleader’s pay. A winning team attracts more fans, which, in turn, brings in more revenue for the team.

In addition, high-profile teams with championship pedigree often pay more to attract top talent. Competition: The level of competition in a particular area can also affect cheerleader pay.

In areas with numerous NBA teams, the competition for cheerleaders is often high, leading to a higher talent pool and lower pay. Availability: Aspiring NBA cheerleaders are often willing to work for lower pay to gain experience and make connections with teams.

This lowers the bargaining power of experienced cheerleaders, leading to lower pay overall. Number of Cheerleaders: The number of cheerleaders on a team can also affect pay.

Teams with a smaller cheerleading squad can pay higher salaries, while teams with larger squads may have to spread their budget across more cheerleaders, resulting in lower pay for each individual.


Becoming an NBA cheerleader is not just about dancing and performing during games; it is a way to represent a team positively and inspire fans both on and off the court. Although the salary may not be as much as other NBA jobs like players and coaches, cheerleading provides a unique experience that many individuals would love to have.

Despite the challenges faced by cheerleaders, including low pay and stiff competition, they remain committed to their roles and are an integral part of the NBA’s game-day experience. Becoming an NBA cheerleader is a dream come true for many young girls and boys who aspire to dance and represent their favorite basketball teams.

Although competition is stiff, with hundreds of aspiring cheerleaders from across the world, it is possible to make it onto an NBA squad with determination and hard work. In this article, we will discuss various steps to becoming an NBA cheerleader, including tryout processes, training, and requirements.

Tryout Process

The first step to becoming an NBA cheerleader is to pass the tryouts. Almost every team has their own audition process, but they usually follow the same basic format.

Auditions are typically held in the offseason or before the start of the season. Candidates are often given a specific routine to learn in advance and will be expected to perform it at the tryout.

The venue will be full of other aspiring cheerleaders, and candidates will typically be grouped together according to their heights. In addition to dancing ability, candidates will be tested on their cheering abilities, i.e., chanting, leading crowd cheers, and overall enthusiasm.

Judges will be looking for individuals who can display excellent dance technique, stamina, and flexibility.

Training for the Season

Once selected, cheerleaders will begin preparing for the season ahead. This includes training and attending rehearsals to improve their dancing abilities.

Cheerleaders, like any other athletes, must maintain their fitness levels throughout the season. They will often train with personal trainers to increase strength and endurance.

Dance rehearsals will also be a big part of the training regimen. Cheerleaders will have multiple rehearsals per week, going over routines, making changes, and perfecting their performances for upcoming games.

They will have to coordinate their moves seamlessly, and it is essential that they develop a rapport with their teammates. Physical Fitness will be a top priority during training for the season.

Cheerleaders must maintain a strict workout regime and eat a balanced, healthy diet. Fitness workouts will vary but usually include cardio routines, strength training, and stretching exercises.

Performance workshops may be another aspect of cheerleading training. Performance workshops will help cheerleaders hone their performance skills, such as facial expressions, body language, and showmanship.

The ultimate goal is to put together an engaging and professional performance that will keep the crowd entertained and involved in the game.

Varying Requirements

Cheerleading teams for the NBA vary in their requirements, depending on the team’s preferences and their fan base. Some NBA teams only allow women on their squads, while other teams have co-ed cheerleading squads.

There is also no particular age limit for NBA cheerleaders, although most are between the ages of 18 and 35. Another consideration is the physical requirements that each team expects from their cheerleaders.

For example, some NBA cheerleading teams may require their cheerleaders to have a specific minimum height, weight, body measurements or fitness level. The requirements are often team-specific, so it is essential that candidates should read the requirements carefully before applying.

Each NBA team will have recruitment information on its official website or social media pages, where candidates can find all the necessary details and take the first steps towards their dream career. In


In conclusion, becoming an NBA cheerleader is no easy feat, and competition is fierce.

However, with the right combination of passion, talent, and hard work, it is entirely possible to make it onto the squad. The first step is to research the specific requirements for the team you are interested in, and thereafter prepare diligently for the tryout process.

Once on the squad, cheerleaders must remain focused on their training, honing their skills, and maintaining optimal levels of physical fitness. Although the journey to become an NBA cheerleader can be challenging, it is an incredibly rewarding way to showcase talent, represent a team, and inspire the fans.

Becoming an NBA cheerleader is a dream come true for many aspiring young individuals. To make it onto a squad, you must pass the tryout process, which involves showcasing your dance and cheering abilities.

Once selected, you must train and attend rehearsals to improve your dancing abilities and maintain optimal physical fitness. The requirements for each team vary, so it’s essential to research and prepare accordingly.

The journey to become an NBA cheerleader can be challenging, but it is ultimately rewarding. Cheerleaders have the opportunity to showcase their talents, represent their teams, and inspire the fans.


1. What is the tryout process for NBA cheerleaders?

The tryout process for NBA cheerleaders typically involves showcasing dance and cheering abilities, performing a specific routine, and maintaining a positive and enthusiastic attitude. 2.

What type of training is required for NBA cheerleaders? NBA cheerleaders must attend dance rehearsals, maintain optimal physical fitness, and attend performance workshops to hone their skills.

3. Do NBA teams have specific height and weight requirements for cheerleaders?

Yes, each NBA team has its own physical requirements for cheerleaders, which may involve height, weight or fitness levels. 4.

What are the benefits of being an NBA cheerleader? Being an NBA cheerleader allows you to showcase your talent, represent your favorite team, and inspire fans, while also providing an opportunity for personal growth and achievement.

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