Local coaches, cheerleaders on viral video: 'You can get hurt badly'

A video from Denver showing a cheerleading coach physically forcing a girl into the splits has now gone viral.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) -- A video from Denver showing a cheerleading coach physically forcing a girl into the splits has now gone viral.

In the video, the cheerleader is screaming and crying, while other kids hold her down. The coach is seen pushing her.

Locally, at Epic Cheer, coaches and cheerleaders said the video was disturbing. Coach Terrari Smith said to push an athlete to the point of screaming in tears is going too far.

"We have a trust. We know who they are. We know how they react to certain things," Smith said about his athletes.

He thinks the relationships and success between athletes and coaches are built on trust.

Two of his cheerleaders, Makayla Sibald and Heaven Johnson, said their coaches don't push them to the verge of tears like what they saw in the video.

"The fact that they were holding her down doesn't seem like the right way to stretch somebody, especially when she was in tears and yelling...it's just too much," they said.

Sibald is 12-years-old and Johnson is 11-years-old, but both know safety is everything.

"You can get hurt badly if you don't do this right," said Johnson.

Both said they trust their coaches to not only help them excel, but to guide them.

"This is basically my second home. I'm here every single day," said Johnson.

© 2017 WVEC-TV


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