Athletes 1st

The Foundation of Athletes 1st

Athletes 1st champions the care, development, safety, inclusivity and diversity of All Star athletes. The foundation of Athletes 1st is an all-encompassing focus on the athlete that includes sport safety, safety while training, minor athlete abuse and misconduct prevention, and the personal development and well being of the athlete. By developing programs and resources that rely on each of these pillars, the USASF strives to keep athletes protected and able to discover life skills within themselves that last beyond cheer and dance.

Sport Safety

The USASF develops and maintains through committee rules based on progression and age-appropriate development in order to protect athletes and provide uniform safety considerations.

Explore the following resources to support efforts toward sport safety:


Safety While Training

Athlete safety during practice is a pillar of the Athlete’s 1st initiative, and the USASF underscores the importance of member clubs employing qualified coaches. To offer the best standard of care, it is imperative that coaches continually seek out educational opportunities to enhance their teaching skills and expand their expertise in the physical development, conditioning and injury prevention of the athlete. The USASF offers a credentialing program for cheer coaches that examines, tests and certifies their proficiency to safely teach building and/or tumbling skills for each level. 

Coach Development

US All Star Federation member clubs should encourage their coaches to continually seek out learning and development opportunities. Athletes 1st and Coaches Corner both provide resources to help coaches grow.


Abuse and Misconduct Prevention

By working together with experts on child abuse prevention and developing proactive policies which aim to protect minor athletes, the USASF places the safety of their athletes above all else. Please explore the following resources to help support athlete safety in All Star.


Athlete Health and Well Being

Athletes 1st provides resources to help All Star Clubs and coaches better ensure the health and well being of their athletes, which the U.S. All Star Federation believes is its first and foremost responsibility to members.


Athlete Growth and Personal Development

In All Star, athletes develop tenacity, a positive work ethic, an understanding of the importance of teamwork and so much more. But off the practice or performance floors the USASF strives to bring athletes leadership training and enrichment opportunities that will reach all facets of their lives — even after they finish their All Star journey.


Club Development & Responsibilities

Becoming a USASF member club demonstrates a program’s commitment to Athletes 1st and empowers each athlete to reach their full potential in All Star. With a focus on the long-term development of the athlete, Athletes 1st provides the foundation for clubs to create the safest and best-possible experience for athletes on and off the floor.

USASF Membership requires that all programs and coaches uphold the:

Clubs can also utilize the following resources for club development :


Parent Development & Engagement

The support of parents is paramount to the positive athlete experience in All Star. By providing resources to parents, such as the parent newsletter and follow up materials to our leadership offerings, Athletes 1st provides a framework for parents to begin to understand how to value their child’s All Star experience, replacing the reliance on winning with the understanding of the life skills All Star provides. The following resources provide parents tips and tools they need to help support All Star athletes.


Healthy Athletes

Athletes 1st provides a framework for parents to begin to understand how to value their child’s All Star experience, replacing the reliance on competition outcomes with focus on proper athletic model development, including proper nutrition.

Resources provided by : Coaching Healthy Habits


As part of the Athletes 1st initiative, the USASF leadership team put together a simple, one-page “tip sheet” for coaches and parents summarizing some of the most important advice that organizations like Darkness 2 Light recommend for safely and thoughtfully posting pictures and video of young athletes.

Tip Sheet for Parents


Our Role

Our Role in Athlete Protection

Know the Facts

Know the Facts about Athlete Protection

Every child deserves to be safe

Safety Matters

Share this video with your kids about athlete protection


Steps for Athlete Protection

The MBF 5 Safety Rules


Discussing Sensitive Topics

Safety Brief

Prevention is Possible

Prevention IS Possible

Trainings and Resources

Reporting Concerns

What next if I suspect?

Reporting Concers of Abuse


Empowerment and Prevention in All Star

Equip yourselves, each other, and your athletes



Safe Environment


Mandated Reporting

Darkness to Light

Mandated Reporting FAQ’s

Reporting Tips

Darkness to Light

Reporting Child Sexual Abuse

State Reporting Laws

Child Welfare Information Gateway

State Statutes Search



Stewards of Children

Child Sexual Abuse Facts

Step Up & Speak Out
Digital Safety
Protecting Youth Athletes
Safety First

In March, the Connection Leaders, alongside our partners in athlete protection, Monique Burr Foundation and Darkness to Light, collaborated to gather safety tips for All Star Coaches and Owners and tweeted them daily for the duration of the month.

The following documents are a collection of those tips and were intended to be released prior to the COVID-19 outbreak. The USASF elected to hold their release as we shifted focus to crisis-response resources and tips geared toward the ‘new normal’ we were experiencing. Now that states are beginning to reopen and many of you have returned to the gym or studio, or are putting together plans to return, we encourage you to review these safety tips and include them in your forward-thinking plans.

We’d like to say thank you again to your Connection leaders, Monique Burr Foundation and Darkness to Light for their continued efforts toward protecting our athletes.

Safety Tip Sheet