Ideas for Middle School Step Teams

By Shannon Lee

Nothing gets a crowd pumped up like a step team. The appealing mix of complex movements make a step performance incredible to watch and is particularly helpful in rousing team spirit at middle and high school athletic matches. Because step teams compete on their own, and do not just serve as a cheering section for other sports, it is essential that middle school step teams consistently incorporate fresh ideas into their routines.

Choose a Theme

The best step routines are usually pulled together by a theme, whether it be through music, costuming or movements. If you have never given any thought to choosing a theme for your middle school step routine, you may want to consider it for an added "wow" factor. For example, you could choose a "seasons" theme and use music that talks about the weather and the changing seasons. For costumes, you may choose to have members of the team dress in colors that represent the seasons, such as blue, green, white and orange. The possibilities are endless when choosing a theme.

Creative Costumes

Many middle school step teams wear costumes that simply reflect their school colors. While this may be traditional and is perfectly acceptable, try taking a fresh approach to costuming, and you will notice that simple changes make a huge difference in terms of audience appeal. For example, try choosing an identical piece of clothing for the lower body (such as jeans or black jogging pants) and then having everyone dress in the same color top, but have the styles of the top vary widely. This creates a uniform yet unique and interesting take on the step team outfit.

Practice Cross-training

Most professional athletes actively cross-train, and members of middle school step teams should be no different. While a middle school step team should already be practicing regularly during the week, these practices are usually dedicated to rehearsing choreography and perfecting routines. Designate time during the week, outside of routine practice, to go for a team jog, hit the gym for some weight training together or take a team yoga or pilates class. Middle school step teams will reap the physical benefits.

Outside Inspiration

When looking for fresh ideas for a middle school step routine, look outside the box at other forms dance that may offer some inspiration. Hip-hop dance includes elements that can easily be incorporated into a middle school step routine to add dynamism and musical flare. Cheerleading offers plenty in the way of ideas for new chants. Even studying rhythmic gymnasts can inspire concepts of movement that may not have considered, previously. Take risks and do not be afraid to try new things.

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