Have you ever noticed how the closer it gets to playoff season, the more we athletes depend on superstitions to see us through to the championship? Forget the skills or the practice you’ve put in all year, that’s for chumps. Now is the time to concentrate on game-day rituals, growing a playoff beard, and how many times you touched the posts.
As our own gym leagues make the final push before playoffs, we thought some of you might be looking to implement your own superstitions. Here’s a few classics from the pros for you to try at your next game:
- Jason Kidd: Kidd always blew a kiss at the basket before shooting a free throw. He said it was to symbolise his love for his wife…or should I say, ex-wife…
- Michael Jordan: Jordan always wore his UNC shorts under his Bulls shorts as a way to stay connected to his Carolina roots. Many claim this superstition is the real reason basketball fashion made the switch from short shorts! Well played, MJ.
- Tiger Woods: Have you ever noticed that Tiger always wears red in the final round at tournaments? His mom once told him it was his power colour and hey, mothers know best.
- Serena Williams: Serena is as superstitious as they come. She always bounces the ball fives times before the first service and twice before the second. She’ll also wear the same socks throughout a tournament if she’s on a winning streak. And she always brings her shower sandals to the court.
- Eastern/Western Conference Hockey Players: Many NHL players refuse to touch the trophy if they win the conference. They’ll get a picture taken beside it, fine, but very rarely will they make contact. That’s reserved for the big one…
It isn’t just the pros who have their superstitions. We took a quick poll of the office to find out what some of our quirks were:
Katherine: Dribbles three times, spins the ball in her left hand, pulls shorts up on the right and then pauses for 1.2 seconds before shooting a foul shot.
Calum: Every time his team scores, he skates to the corner, taps all three goal posts, then takes a drink of water.
Tina: Has to do the exact same warm up, including stretches, before each game.
Fiona: Takes a minimum of 5 shots right in front of the basketball net first thing in the morning on every game day.
What’s your superstition? We want to hear about it!
~ Written by Katherine Force and Fiona Geddes