Give me a "B", give me an “E”, give me a "T”, give me an “H”. What does that spell? You guessed it! That spells the name of Weplay’s newest addition to Coach of the Week, youth cheerleading coach Beth Keeler of Midlothian,VA.
Beth coaches the 8-9 year-old Swift Creek Minor Cheerleaders in Chesterfield County Virginia. The squad recently wrapped up a successful season, placing 3rd in their first competition and runner up at the final competition of the season. Beth says she is very proud of this team’s accomplishments. She has been a coach with Swift Creek for the past two years, but her overall coaching career began back when she was only a teenager in high school.
When Beth’s oldest daughter, 8-year-old Ella, started to take interest in cheer and wanted to become a cheerleader, Beth was “happy to jump in and help!” Like many youth sports, cheerleading has seen a lot of recent growth over the past decade. It truly takes skilled and trained athletes to perform the competitive cheer routines seen at tournaments all across the country. Beth and her young team put a lot of hard work, time and effort into practicing and polishing routines, but Beth also knows the importance of making sure her team is enjoying what they are doing. “I love each and every one of the girls that I coach,” Beth says. “It is very important for me to build a special bond with each of them and watch them grow throughout the season. It is so cool to see the girls in August and watch them progress to competition. They learn so much! I want them to work hard and have fun. A hard balance, but we try!”
The job of a cheerleader is to pump up crowds through bursts of energy, catchy rhymes and unmatched team spirit. It would be foolish to underestimate the spirit and contagious energy of a cheer coach like Beth. She admits surprisingly, that the basic skills and fundamentals of cheerleading have not changed since she was young.
“I have also been known to pull out a cartwheel here or there just to impress the kids and let them know I still got it!” Beth admits.
Beth knows efficiency and communication are vital to coaching. Weplay makes it easy for her to stay organized and send messages and other important material to her team.
“I can easily send out a message, schedule practices and prop the team in a few minutes,” Beth says. “The gallery is AWESOME to share photos and videos!”
During the cheerleading season Beth says she feels as though she has three full-time jobs. She works a full-time day job, coaches her cheer squad and her most important job, she says, is taking care of her two daughters Ella, 2-year-old Abigail and her husband Budd Keeler.
In the near future Beth may have to take on another coaching gig because her youngest daughter, Abigail, wants to be a cheerleader like her older sister, but for now being the mascot of the Swift Creek Minor Cheerleaders is a perfect role.
Even when the Keeler’s are not cheering in competition they are cheering. Cheering on the Hokies, that is. It’s only fitting that the Keeler family are big Virginia Tech Hokie fans!
Beth Keeler’s Tips for Coaching Success:
1. Patience, Patience, Patience.
2. Have fun and don’t take it too seriously.
3. Make sure you have good help! I have a great assistant coach this season. Hollie and I have some rockin' parents that are willing to drop in and do what ever is needed to help.
4. Never forget the kids are always watching, always. You are a coach even when you are not at a practice or game. Take the time to say hello, give a hug and listen! You have to be a good role model at all times.
5. Be transparent and open with parents. Let them know what is going on, how they can help and I try to make sure they always know what to expect (schedule, fees, etc.) as soon as possible. Over communicate information!