Epic Athlete | Ryan Respinto

Well my journey began about 10 years ago when I went to my sisters practice because I used to want to play on the trampoline, and I saw this really big team and they did all these cool tricks and I told my mom that I want to do that, so I started classes at ace of Birmingham and 3 years later I tried out for my first team, I made it and that where I fell in love with the sport of cheerleading. As I got older I got better and I’ve hit some walls at points in my life but the main thing I think about is that as long as I stay positive and stay motivated I can do anything. So in the middle of my cheer career, I saw a team called Ace Warriors and realized that I wanted to do that. I wanted to be on that team no matter what. So I worked, I worked harder than I ever have, I was in the gym every day for almost 8 hours a day and a few years later in 2014 I finally accomplished that goal. I’m now in my 4th season as a Warrior. I knew that being a warrior wasn’t going to be easy so I told myself that no matter what happens never give up, later that season I became an alternate, I was so upset but I remembered what I had told myself and the next season I was back on the floor.

Injuries are tough to deal with. I have broken almost 40 bones, the worst one was my neck back in 2012, but that never stopped me. Most recently, in the summer of 2016, I broke my back in 4 places. That was the most difficult injury to deal with. I was upset for a while because the pain was so bad. I was out for a month, and as soon as I could come back to practice I worked twice as hard. The most impactful lesson I’ve learned throughout my career is that nothing is given; you have to work for everything in life. Living full out for me isn’t just in the sport I love; it’s in everything I do in life. I’m going to be completely honest and say I struggle in school but I never give up. I strive to be better at school, in cheer, and at my job. I make sure that I put 110% into everything. You have to push the limits of what you are capable of and work with maximum effort to achieve great things, earn every bit it one of my favorite quotes is, “get thrown to the wolves and return leading the pack”.

Being an epic athlete was a major achievement this past year and it means so much to be apart of such an amazing group of athletes and hope to further rep epic brands. I don’t know what the future holds for me but I do know that cheer will be in my life forever.

Everyone is amazing, follow your dreams and your passions and do what makes you happy not what makes everyone else happy.