Cheerleader in the Justas: Alexis D. Granado

Name: Alexis David Granado Lanza

Age: 22

Classification: Fourth Year

Major: Public Relations and a Minor in Spanish education for high school.

Relationship Status: Taken (Sorry ladies)

Hobbies: Read, play basketball, and obviously cheerleading.

Favorite quote: “Everything you do, is in your hands”. Meaning that if you propose something to yourself don’t wait for anything or anybody, you have to work for it.

 

HCUPR: Besides cheerleading, what else are you passionate about?

Alexis: Teaching, because I’m doing a certification in education and I’m really passionate about it. My professional goal is to be a Spanish teacher for a secondary school because I want to teach kids that are in the transition of high school to a university with the right preparation, not simply the one that already exist in the curriculum in the education system, so they have an idea of how the university is and how it can open the perspective and the horizon. I just love teaching.

 

HCUPR: How did you get into cheerleading?

Alexis: At first I didn’t have an idea that cheerleading existed in the university, but a friend from high school called me one day and told me “Hey you’re big and strong you should try-out for this.” So I did in my freshmen year in the university.

 

HCUPR: What position are you now in the team?

Alexis: I’m base. My job is to toss the girl, and I’m basically in all the routine except the gymnastics part of it.

 

HCUPR: Biggest achievement in the team?

Alexis: In the 2 year I’ve been in the team, I would say the union in the group. It's so strong that we have created one of the best work as team.

HCUPR: How many Justas have you competed?

Alexis: I’ve competed two times and this is my third time, because I took a break in one of the past years.

 

HCUPR: Best memories of the Justas?

Alexis: My first year, the first time I stepped out in front of so many people, to know that you have been working so hard for the past two semesters for a routine that only last 2 minutes and 30 seconds, it was shocking. But it's surprising how big the coliseum is once you’re there and how that fact of how big it was disappears since you’re so focused on the routine.

 

HCUPR: What advice would you give to those how are going on their first Justas?

Alexis: If you go as an athlete there’s not much you can do but rest and focus on your jobs. If you go as a spectator, have a lot of fun with the activities and events with the spirit of your alma mater. You go to support your people, take out the spirit of a proud fan.

 

HCUPR: How difficult is it to prepare for the Justas and how does it pays off?

Alexis: The work here in the campus is difficult, because every year we have to start from zero, some people leave and new ones come in that might not have experience or knowledge. Our first semester is about training the basics and is more focused on the strength and stamina. The second one is all about the routine, practice, and more practice. The fact that it's only 2 minutes and 30 seconds in the Justas doesn’t take away the value of the training but motivates us instead. It gives you a reason to perfect the routine, no space for errors. It's tedious but if you love it like I do it's just a part of the process.

HCUPR: What have you learned being part of the team of cheerleader?

Alexis: I’ve learned to put aside the ego, because this is a sport based on teamwork, not on the individual. At least this is the philosophy that I bring in the mattress and I try to work on with my teammates. It doesn’t matter how developed and ahead you are if your teammates aren’t at the same level. Some people might be great but others might be a bit slower or behind. When that is brought on the table it's a matter of balance and how the team is. Being on the team, I’ve learned that your work is reflected on how developed the team is as a whole. I’ve left the individualism aside.

 

HCUPR: Advice for team work?

Alexis: Leave aside the individual perspective and focus on team work. More than parts we’re a whole group that is a like a system. When you work the parties one by one the result is exceptional.

HCUPR: How has being part of the team helped you in your studies?

Alexis:It has helped me in the famous group projects and on being organized with ideas and responsibilities.

 

HCUPR: Once in the team, how have your relationships with friends and partner have changed?

Alexis: Friendships while I’m studying and I’m on the team are a bit tedious because it takes a lot of my time, but it's something I like. In my case my girlfriend is also my teammate. She’s my “flyer” in the team. We basically spend a lot of time together in and out of the team, but we always draw a line in our personal and professional lives once we’re on the mattress.

HCUPR: So trust is a big part of your relationship?

Alexis: That’s one of the advantages. She trusts me because she knows she’s in good hands. Even if we weren’t in a relationship that’s the idea we try to bring because it's a dangerous sport and someone literally has your life in their hands. In my case with my girlfriend we have great chemistry and we trust each other a lot. 

HCUPR: Overall what would you like to say about the team and you experience on it?

Alexis:  In my experience it has been a great team. It was where I learned my foundations and this year not only do I feel good vibes but I see the work we have done. This year, I feel more secure than other times and the preparation the team has will be key and will bring lots of surprises. The IUPI will give a lot to talk about in the Justas.