Pre-game traditions benefit swimmers


Palmer diving in after all her pre-game traditions are complete. Photo courtesy of Cassie Palmer

By J1 Reporter Allison Martin

Whether it is only eating certain food the day before a game or screaming the same chant with your team, every athlete has a pre-game tradition. It is almost as important as the event itself, for it is something that has to be done. Some athletes take their traditions lightly and some follow them by heart. Junior Cassie Palmer, a Varsity swimmer, follows her pre-game tradition like it is the Bible.

Cassie Palmer has been swimming since she was a little girl; she practically lives in the water. With years of swim meets, Palmer has her pre-game tradition down to the tee.

Palmer’s pre-game tradition starts a week before a meet. She always has grilled shrimp for dinner. This dinner is usually the Saturday before the meet. It is a unique tradition, but has worked for Palmer. Palmer says, “I like to have grilled shrimp because it is good nutrition before a big meet”.

The next pre-game tradition of Palmer is her stretching routine. This tradition may be more superstitious rather than tradition, but it works. Palmer tends to do the same stretch routine before her meet. Doing the same stretch routine gives Palmer a sense of calmness right before a race.

The last of her traditions is Palmer’s favorite. It is a good representation of how a coach plays a big role in an athlete’s life. Palmer says, “My favorite tradition is always having Coach Zach Jacobson put on my second cap”. Coaches are  important to every athlete. Palmer looks up to Coach Jacobson and loves having him be part of her pre-game tradition.

As a team, pregame traditions are used all the time. The last practice before a meet, the Varsity swimming team usually goes in the swimming facility’s hot tub.  This is supposed to relax the muscles and provide a good way for the team to bond. The night before the meet, the team meets to have a pasta dinner because pasta dinners are proven to help athletes before an event. Pasta has tons of carbohydrates to fill the swimmers up.

Minutes before the meet, the Varsity Swim Team says a little prayer. Varsity swimmer Catherine Franco says, “We pray for good luck and that God may be with us no matter what happens during the meet.”

So, whether it is eating a big plate of grilled shrimp or going in a hot tub with your team, pre-game traditions are beneficial. They give a sense of unity and calmness to every athlete.

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