Chris G. Koutures, MD, FAAP Pediatric and sports medicine specialist

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Comprehensive blend of general pediatric and sport medicine care with an individualized approach that enhances the health and knowledge of patients and their families



Proud physician:
USA Volleyball Mens/Womens National Teams
CS Fullerton Intercollegiate Athletics
Chapman University Dance Department
Orange Lutheran High School

Co-Author of Acclaimed Textbook

Pediatric Sports Medicine: Essentials for Office Evaluation

Orange County Physician Of Excellence, 2015 and 2016


Are cheerleaders athletes?  

Better believe it!

Bases, flyers, backspots and tumblers need agility, strength, and frequent practice to fine-tune routines and prevent injury.

Unfortunately, the frequency of cheerleading injuries is rising with the increasing complexity of stunts.

How can cheerleaders, advisors, parents and coaches reduce these risks?

  • Practice should take place in proper environments: use mats to practice landings and dismounts, and have high ceilings for jumping and throwing routines.
  • Experienced and knowledgeable instructors should be consulted to teach the basics of cheerleading.
  • A base must know how to support a flyer without hurting him/herself, while the flyer must know how to land safely.
  • Teach flyers rolling and landing techniques over and over again.
  • Bases need to work on proper lifting and holding techniques to reduce cumulative trauma to shoulders and the back.
  • Tumblers should develop appropriate shoulder and hip strength to take pressure off elbows, wrists, and knees.
  • Pre-season conditioning is essential with focus on shoulder and back strengthening exercises.
    • An athletic trainer, physical therapist, or sports medicine physician can demonstrate and recommend appropriate conditioning programs.
  • Avoid multi-level pyramids or throwing of cheerleaders unless all participants are comfortable and well-trained in these skills.
    • One weak link can ruin the routine for all others.
  • If an athlete has pain or discomfort with any portion of a routine, do not compromise personal safety or the safety of teammates.
    • Work with a coach or obtain medical evaluation before returning to practice or competition.