A Brief History of Cheerleading

A Brief History of Cheerleading
Marvin Newman / Sports Illustrated

The Pom-Poms
Derived from the French word pompe ("tuft of ribbons"), pom-poms have been the cheerleaders' accessory of choice since the 1930s. The early crepe-paper models, which bled in wet weather and came apart easily, were replaced by a vinyl version in the mid-1960s.

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