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It’s sparkly, athletic and enthusiastic. But it’s grittier than you might think. Competitive cheer is a fast-growing sport in Canada that requires the skills of a gymnast and the agility of a dancer. Recently, almost 8,000 athletes from around the country gathered in Niagara Falls for the national cheer championship.

The Globe’s feature writer, Jana Pruden was at the three-day competition where she spent time with athletes, parents and coaches. She’s on the show to explain what she learned and why she thinks we’ll be hearing a lot more about this sport in the coming years.

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