Montgomery Blair High School's Online Student Newspaper
Wednesday, August 15, 2018 8:58 pm

Clubs: Lady Blazers Incorporated

Time: Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thurs
Place: Room 272 or the SAC
Sponsor: Maime Barclay, Connie Monté
President: Sierra Shepherd, Moyatu Ebba
"A new year is here! We have no fear," the members of the Blair step team, now called Lady Blazers Incorporated (LBI), chant as they keep the beat with their feet, hands and legs. LBI members have a passion for dance, music, sisterhood and rhythm.

While LBI might seem like cheerleading, its members stress the differences of the two activities. While cheerleading is about the team, LBI is about self-expression and competition – the club enters competitions throughout the year. "The main reason step team is different from cheerleading is that we show expression," junior captain Moyatu Ebba says.

This year is Maime Barclay's first year of coaching LBI, yet even this early in the year, she has already noticed the girls' power and creativity. "These girls have fun while they create, invent and communicate with each other in a mutual respect," she says.

Members enjoy LBI not only for the fun they have but for the relationships they form. "It’s not only a team; it's like family," Ebba says, or "sisterhood," as junior Leslie McCally puts it.

Barclay has also observed their relationships. "The step team gives girls the opportunity to form a mini-family away from their usual family," she says. "It allows them to be committed to something worthy. There's a great camaraderie that exists between them."

The girls even formed an academic support system that meets once or twice a month to help each member of LBI keep her grades high enough to be eligible for extracurricular activities, according to Barclay.

During a typical practice, LBI members warm up with stretches and running for the first ten minutes. Then, they discuss their personal goals for the practice. The rest of the time is spent rehearsing steps for upcoming competitions, like the Dec. 14 contest at Roosevelt High School in Prince George's county. "We review steps that we know, and we get input from steppers," Shepherd says. "It’s fun – it's like a rush."

To join Lady Blazers incorporated, contact Maime Barclay.

Club beat by Kiera Zitelman