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Eva Toussaint is a first-year Global BBA student on the Reims Campus. At the age of 18, she is preparing to take part in the World Cheerleading Championships to be held from April 20-24th in Orlando, USA. Interview.

How did you come to take up cheerleading, a spectacular sport that is still relatively new in France?

I started artistic gymnastics in my village near Paris when I was 4. Aged 8, I was scouted by a coach from a regional centre. That was the moment the world of elite sport opened up for me as I went from 4 to 25 hours’ practice every week.

During secondary school, I had a specially arranged timetable and did 5 hours’ sport each day. This meant I got to take part in a lot of competitions and managed to perform well at the French championships: 3rd in the team event in 2016, individual vice-champion in my category and as a team in 2019, and 2nd with the Elite team in 2020.

At high school, it was more difficult because there was no real structure for sport. I had to train very early in the morning and very late in the evening. Then, in my final year, I was invited to join a cheerleading team, a sport that has three different positions: fly, base and gym. The team had just been created and its goal was to qualify for the world championships, so really motivating! And it all started really well because we were French champions in the Elite Senior category right away.

Elite sport represents sporting excellence. What has sport given you and continues to give you?

When I was a teenager, at times it was complicated because doing sport at a high level is not always compatible with going out and having friends. But today I know that it has given me a lot of opportunities and so many incredible experiences.

For example, the development of numerous skills such as self-control and stress management. At such a high level of competition, you always have to give 100% to excel. And to do this, I learned the importance of consistency and precision. And because there is also a notion of danger in cheerleading, we have to listen to and trust our coaches.

I have access to training courses as well, which are financed by our club. This is how I became a judge and a coach. I am also a Sustainable Development Advisor for the federation. Raising awareness on such issues among the youngest members of the community by proposing real initiatives that can be introduced in the gymnasium or during training sessions is really important to me.

I’m also really proud to have taken part in some fantastic competitions where I competed against some great athletes, including one who competed at the Olympics.

And how do you organise things with your studies?

At the moment, I’m training 10 to 12 hours a week, but everything is grouped together at the weekend because my teammates, who are all adults, come from all over France, and our coach from Switzerland. So I spend my week going to class and studying and at weekends I go back to my parents’ house in the Paris area to train.

I juggle between the two, which doesn’t leave much time for rest, but it is a rhythm I am used to. And my years of training and competition have taught me to work quickly and be very efficient and well-organised.

My next big event is the World Championships in the US in Orlando from 20-24 April. Everything is working out perfectly because I fly out on April 18th, just after the exams!

How are you feeling as the world championships approach?

It’s the first time I’ve taken part in such a big event, so it’s going to be incredible. I feel so proud, happy and impatient at the same time!

But I’m treating it just like any other competition and I’ll be giving 100% as always.

Associated programme

Global BBA – Bachelor in Business Administration

Expand your horizons with the Global BBA
  • Full time
  • 4 years
  • Paris (1st year), Reims, Rouen