At the beginning, she only helped the majorettes, now her students are European and world champions.

Marie Potočárová, 51, from Vítkov in the Opava region, is one of the coaches of these successful majorettes. His wards of the Allis Vítkov club have repeatedly won the titles of European and world champions since 2016.

“At first I didn’t even think we would make it this far. We certainly already have around seven World Cup titles. But I've never been a cheerleader myself. I got into this sport a bit by chance, when my eldest daughter became a majorette,” recalls the coach.

Photo: Archives of Marie Potočárová

Trainer Marie Potočárová with one of her successful clients

They knew the leader of the Vítkov majorettes well. “So when she needed help, I tried and persevered. But it's already been 24 years,” describes a woman who trains older and younger cheerleaders at the Vítkov leisure center. But she only has it as a hobby, because she works as an administrative employee at the Czech Post.

A physically demanding sport

“It must be said that this sport is really physically demanding, which not everyone thinks about. It combines gymnastics, acrobatics, ballet, but also stage dance. The girls work hard on each other. They must master the right technique of movement, posture, perceiving rhythm and music, coordinating everything with others,” explained Potočárová, adding that before each training and performance session, girls must warm up and warm up their muscles.

Photo: Archives of Marie Potočárová

Vítkov's majorettes already have around seven world championship titles.

“It is also important to learn how to work with tools, whether with a wand or a pompom. Someone learns a new trick in a month, someone takes three months.”

They take girls from four years old

Currently, Marie Potočárová trains thirty majorettes. “We already have kindergarten preparation, we take girls from four years old. Our oldest cheerleaders will be nineteen years old,” explained Vítkov's coach and added that, of course, all girls do not participate in competitions.

“Those who can handle everything drive. Others train just for fun, because they enjoy it, even if they don't always keep up with the pace. We have no problem with that,” he said. she declared.

He is now preparing his protégés for the new season. “In two weeks we will go to the competition in Opava, then the promotion competition for the Championship of the Czech Republic will begin, which will take place in May in Hradec Králové, under the banner of the CMA association. If we succeed, we will participate at the European Championship, which will also take place this year in Hradec Králové”, smiles the woman.

Photo: Archives of Marie Potočárová

The races are physically, but also mentally, demanding.

The ambition is for the girls to go to the World Cup this year, but it doesn't have one. “Cape Town, where this is taking place, is really beyond our financial means. We thank all our sponsors for being able to do this here and in Europe. The city of Vítkov supports us financially, and this would not be possible without the support parents”, summed up the coach of the successful majorettes from Vítkov.

Prom etiquette or how to avoid unpleasant mistakes

John Robinson

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