Written by Newspaper Staff Reporter Lexie Hunter
Allatoona’s Hotshotz dance team works very hard each practice to perfect not only their halftime and pre-game routines but their competition routines as well. These girls practice every Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 3:30-5:30 and perform Friday nights at home football games. Dance practice begins with stretching for the first ten minutes, and then they do “across the floor.” Across the floor is where the dancers practice their leaps, side leaps, pirouettes, and double attitudes across the floor. After the warm-up, they begin to work on the dance. Unlike most sports, Hotshotz works on perfecting smaller sections before putting the routine together. They learn a section, then work on cleaning it, then learn another section, then work on cleaning it, then when they have all the sections, they work on perfecting it all together. As far as competitions go, the girls are expected to show up at the competition location completely ready to perform, meaning hair and make-up are completely done, and you are dressed in your correct uniform. Once they get called out of their waiting room, they get brought to a practice room where the group gets to run the routine one final time before they compete so they can fix any mistakes. At the end of the warm-up, the ladies take the floor and perform their routine to the best of their ability.
Dance is a much more difficult sport than some people might realize and is constantly evolving, and you will always have something new to try and work on. Active Hotshotz dancer Gabriella Loccisano says, “I’ve done Hotshotz for the past three years, and I still think it is hard. Personally, it’s difficult because we do a lot of tricks, and it is hard for me if I do not know how to do the trick.” Every sport is challenging, but Hotshotz has some added troubles. Hotshotz Dancer Lia says, “What makes Hotshotz difficult compared to other sports is that we’re still trying to make our name in this school. We work incredibly hard, and sometimes we’re criticized for the routines we do, but we also get a lot of praise from other dancers! Overall, the pressure from knowing some don’t take us seriously can be hard, but we know who we are, and we know how hard we work, so it makes it worthwhile.” Hotshotz work incredibly hard, and it pays off as they are current state champions!