Competitive Cheerleading: When Does Strict Coaching Cross a Line?

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"There are days I go home and I say, 'I wish I handled that different,' or, 'I shouldn't have said that to her,' and I'll pull that kid in the next day ... and 90 percent of the time, they will say, 'I know and we're good,' and I'm like, 'OK, let's get to work.'"

Her cheer squad members said they would not have it any other way.

"I don't think there is 'too tough' when you are talking all-star cheerleading," said 18-year-old Lexi Borino. "I think that if you are going to have a successful organization and lead your team to the top, you have to be able to get in their face and then be able to control them and bring them back and show them that you love them."

Romero said she strives to build strong girls.

"They're kids, I get that," she said. "They are babies in the scheme of life and these parents trust their kids with me. My job is to bring out the athlete they don't even know exist and, [at] the same time, make them into this spectacular strong woman that they will go out there and society will not swallow them whole."

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