BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (CBS 2) — A group of cheerleaders from Central High School were threatening to hang up their pom-poms over their outfits. They said the uniforms were too skimpy and hurt their self esteem, CBS 2HD’s Mary Calvi reports.
“I don’t really want to show my stomach to people and it’s not legal in competition for us to show our midriff,” said Heidi Medina.
Heidi and her teammates loved last year’s uniform that was less revealing.
“I don’t feel comfortable. My whole stomach is hanging out. Yes I can pull it up and if I pull it up my whole backside is hanging out,” said Ariana Mesaros.
A recent poll of college cheerleaders showed the uniforms can have damaging effects. One-third of those polled were at risk for eating disorders, especially young women wearing midriff-baring uniforms.
“This happens at a time when girls are particularly vulnerable. They are developing their identities, their bodies are changing, they are particularly impacted by peer pressure and social pressure,” said Renee Zweig, Director of Union Square Cognitive Therapy.
Two girls on Bridgeport’s team were so embarrassed they wore football jerseys to cover up during their first game, but Bridgeport public school officials said they don’t condone inappropriate attire.
“As we move forward new skirts have been ordered. Full body suits have been ordered, so the uniform in its full compliment as of this next game should be fine,” said John Ramos, Sr., Bridgeport Superintendent of Schools.
For some girls, however, the uniform controversy is a personal foul. “I feel like if I go out, I feel trashy,” said Mesaros.
School administrators said they will have black body suits for the girls to wear under the uniform before this week’s game.