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By KESSHMITA PARANJOTHI
alltherage@thestar.com.my

Yoyo Ho Yuin Yow
Age: 17
Team name: Blitzerz
School: SMK Bandar Utama, Damansara (4)

Yoyo Ho fell in love with cheerleading after watching the iconic cheer film Bring It On. Unaware that cheerleading was thriving in Malaysia, she got into gymnastics instead. But once she discovered her high school’s cheer team, there was no turning back for this cheer-crazy young girl.

Seventeen-year-old Yoyo will be sitting for her SPM examinations at the end of this  year. Nevertheless, cheerleading is still a big part of her life.

Seventeen-year-old Yoyo will be sitting for her SPM examinations at the end of this year. Nevertheless, cheerleading is still a big part of her life.

Tell us what a typical school day is like.

A typical day begins with school at 7am, cheer practice in the afternoon and tuition at night. It sounds tough and some days are harder than others but I have an amazing mum, who ferries me everywhere.

What sacrifices have you made for cheerleading?

I’ve sacrificed much of my free time. Sometimes, I don’t get to spend as much time as I want with my family because my schedule is filled with either cheer practice or studies. However, I now treasure the time I have with my sister and mother when we’re in the car at the same time – even though we’re headed in different directions.

Where do you get ideas and inspiration for your stunts?

I watch a lot of videos on YouTube (mostly international ones) to learn how I can improve myself and to get the inspiration for new stunts. These videos also show how cheerleaders spend so much time perfecting a routine, so they can put on an awesome performance during their competitions. Their hard work and determination push me to do my best when I attend cheer practices and ultimately, during competitions as well.

How has your school provided support to the cheer club?

The school has been great! For example, they help us financially by looking for sponsors and they also handle all the paperwork.
CHEER has come a long way since it started in 2000. What are you expecting from CHEER 2015? I am sure the competition will be very tough. I have high expectations for the new material that will be showcased this year because Malaysian cheerleading has progressed so much. Each team has been working very hard and I wish them all the best!

Who is your biggest pillar of strength in helping you stay focused on the sport?

My 20 girls are my biggest pillar of strength. We might fail to recognise each other’s hard work at times but we have all sacrificed for our passion for the sport. We motivate and encourage each other even when we’re off the practice mat.

Do you intend to pursue cheerleading after high school?

Yes, definitely! It’s such a passion of mine. I can’t see myself having as much passion for any other sport.

For more information on CHEER 2015, click here.

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