When you're custom designing a cheer uniform for your team, it's important to find out what the cheer uniform rules and regulations are. The rules often differ from one organization or category to another. For instance, high school rules will be different from college or all star rules, and rules can vary school to school, or state to state, so be sure you know the regulations pertaining to your team. Also, rules for dance are not going to be the same as those for cheerleading. The following are general summaries of cheer uniform rules for high school, college and all star cheerleading based on national cheer organizations, but are they are not the complete rules. For more information about cheer uniform rules check with the appropriate organizations, or check with your local or state cheer organizations.
The National Federation of High School Associations (NFHS) basically states that high school cheer squad uniform tops must cover the midriff while arms are at the sides. Small amounts of mid section showing during movements will not, in most cases, violate rules. In general, uniforms should be modest-looking. Tops should be waist-length covering the entire frontal area of the body, but sleeveless shirts that allow shoulders and arms to show are okay. The back construction should cover the upper body, but if the lower back shows while sitting and bending it will not violate rulings. Cheer skirt lengths are generally 12 to 14 inches, but these lengths tend to be shrinking each year so be sure and check for changes in current rulings. Some schools encourage shorter skirts for safety reasons because too much fabric can be dangerous for performing certain stunts. Cheer briefs must be worn under skirts, and many schools are opting for team logos, paw prints or other appropriate symbols sewn on the side or on the behind which does not violate NFHS rules.
Apparel and Accessories, Rule 2, Section 2 from NFHS Spirit Guidelines 2009-10
College Cheer Uniform Rules
Appropriate uniforms are required at all practices, performances, and award ceremonies.
In General, uniforms must not be sexually provocative and garments should be secure to prevent "wardrobe malfunctions" (articles of clothing coming open or falling apart). And appropriate undergarments must be worn.
Male Cheer Uniform Rules
Female Cheer Uniform Rules
All Star Cheerleading Uniform Rules
All star cheerleading regulations with regard to uniforms and accessories state that:
The only props allowed are flags, banners, pom-pons, signs, megaphones and pieces of cloth, and must be put in a safe place after use.
Casts with rough edges must be covered with padding to protect participants from injury.
Note: Because high school cheer uniform rules do not apply to all star teams, many teams have tops that extend just below the bra line, and it's acceptable to design tops with material cut out across the top of the chest, shoulders, and the top of the back, or parts of the arms. Skirts must be 12-14 inches long, but as with high school rulings, the length is shrinking every year for mainly safety reasons, so check current rulings. Rules may vary from one organization or school to another.