California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

A day in the life of a Raiderette

Photo courtesy of Court_Rawlinson via Twitter

Philip Chin,
Contributor

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Have you ever wondered what it’s like being a dancer for the Oakland Raiders? I always wanted to know. I was able to interview Courtney Rawlinson about her experience being a Raider dancer, what got her into dancing, the challenges of being dancer and working a full-time job.

What got you into dancing?

Rawlinson: I love dancing and performing and started dancing when I was 3yrs old because my mom and grandma were dancers. I cheered throughout high school and college (St. Mary’s). I am now 26 years old and still love dancing!

What is it like being a Raider dancer?

I love being a cheerleader for the Raiders because they have an awesome fan base that is worldwide, the raider nation and I am also able to be a part of my community by attending corporate and charity events as a Raiderette!

What is your favorite thing about being a raider dancer?

R: When we get onto the field we perform a pregame routine and then cheer for player intros. It is very loud in the coliseum and they normally have fireworks go off for player intros and the national anthem which is awesome! We always try to cheer our raiders on for a win!

What is it like during game day?

R: Gameday is a very special experience. We get to the field very early for practice and run through all of our routines like we would in a game but a few times each. We then go back to our locker rooms to get ready for the game. Each game some of the girls go to Raiderville to sign autographs and perform a dance and some girls go to the suites to take pictures with fans. We all have a ritual when we are walking from the locker room to the field to hit the top of every door with our poms for good luck!

What are some challenges when it is comes to dancing?

R: It is challenging to keep up with the physical fitness needed to be a cheerleader. We have 3 practices a week for 3 hours each and we also all work out on our own. We have a personal trainer that is working with us this year who showed us some great workouts you can do at home.

What is it like working a full-time job and dancing for the Raiders?

R: It’s tough because during the season I have to practice three times a week and I’m working during the day. The only free time I have are when the Raiders are either playing away or during offseason. The Raiderettes only make minimum wage so I work full-time to make money so I can pay for my expenses.

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A day in the life of a Raiderette