I'm also not a huge fan. I realize that cheerleading has expanded beyond girls clapping and cheering on the sidelines, while the boys actually played a sport, but it still strikes a nerve with me. That and the whole looks-based aspect of it. IMO, it sends the wrong message to girls.
Like Linda, I prefer a physical activity that focuses on... being physical. Cheering has gotten better in that regard, I'll admit. There IS a lot of athleticism involved. But without the skimpy uniforms, the make-up, the hair? A team is not going to do well. Other teams don't focus on that, but rather actual physical performance.
The difference was brought home to me earlier this year when my daughter and I attended a field hockey festival down in FL - at the same time/location as a large cheerleading competition. It couldn't have been more marked.
Having said that, though... if your daughter wants to try it? Let her. There is still athleticism involved, and I would personally prefer to see a girl in some kind of physical activity than leading a sedentary lifestyle.