The student news site of Greater Latrobe High School

The High Post

The student news site of Greater Latrobe High School

The High Post

The student news site of Greater Latrobe High School

The High Post

GLSD Athletes use Superstitions to Give them a Competitive Edge


For Miley Williams team bonding and developing routines is a crucial part of achieving success in softball. She starts her day before her game by eating a healthy breakfast to get fueled. Miley then does the same warm-up and stretches to prepare for her game. During this time, the softball team will advise each other and provide helpful tips and tricks while warming up. Athletes like Miley use superstitions and routines from cultural traditions or individual experiences to provide them with a sense of control. 

Various athletes have different superstitions to achieve success. Softball catcher Maddie Munchinski said, “I wear the same bow in my hair and I do my hair pretty much the same.” Routines work for Maddies. “I think it (superstitions) work because people usually stick to what works for them,” said Munchinski. In addition to some softball players doing their hair in the same way, they also have their systems and mantras before or during the game. Munchinksi said, “They take their time before they get to the plate to hit the ball. They have their own different routines.”

Hockey players have different superstitions to give them an edge in their game. “A superstition I do before a hockey game is to retape my stick before every game because I think it gives me good luck,” said Brogan Murphy. A lot of hockey players are very particular about how their stick is taped. “It’s the same every time. I do the same pattern, use the same tape color, the same wax, the same everything,” said Brogan. 

In addition to preparing their equipment in a specific way, the Icecats usually have the same pre-game routines. “Some people dress the same and wear the same suits to every game,” said Brogan. 

The hockey team has a tradition of dressing in suits for away games. During Christmas time, most of the players can be seen wearing holiday-themed suits with cool designs. Ethan Allias, class of ‘23, used to wear a blue suit to regular away games, but during Christmas, he would alternate between three Christmas suits with his favorite being a red suit with gingerbread on it. 

Cheerleaders can be spotted on game day because they are wearing their uniforms, or during the winter time, they wear their spirit wear since it is warmer. During the games, cheerleaders perform difficult stunts, so they use their superstitions to help them stay engaged in what they are doing. Flyer Emma Lippert said, “Before I stunt, I always tap my fingers in a certain style so I’m more focused on my breathing and what I am going to do instead of other things that happened throughout the day.” Techniques get cheerleaders into the right headspace. 

“I think a lot of people do something to get them in the right mindset because you need a lot of focus and concentration when you are stunting, and flying, and dancing. You have to be very focused about what you are trying to do,” said Emma.

Cheerleaders have to be very in tune with their bodies. Emma is aware of what every part of her body from her head to her toes is doing. She focuses on engaging her core muscles and squaring her hips during her stunts. Emma said, “I also make sure to breathe in slowly and then out. I also breathe in a pattern so that I can focus on that and be more concentrated and calm.”

Another athlete that uses superstitions to aid them in their performance are dancers. Dancers follow many superstitions before their recitals or competitions. Sometimes their superstitions can be as simple as using the same makeup or hair products. “I use the same two hair ties to do my bun for every photoshoot and recital for the past ten years. I don’t know what I would do if they broke because I would then be out of luck,” said Liv Carlquist. 

Even backstage dancers have different routines to prepare for an excellent performance. Liv said, “Dancers also tend to run their dances multiple times backstage before doing it on stage just to make sure you don’t forget it.”

Other times dancers continue to carry out the same system they have used for years. “Before a dance recital, I make sure to drink lots of water and pack my bag with a lot of granola bars and I make sure to spray my hair with the same hairspray and I always stop at Starbucks before arriving at the auditorium,” said Malorie Shaffer. 

Regardless of the sport, athletes tend to be a superstitious group. These routines boost confidence and provide them with a positive mindset. In the end, that’s what truly matters.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Abigail Allias
Abigail Allias, Staff Writer
Abigail Allias is a sophomore at Greater Latrobe Senior High School. This is her first year on the staff of The High Post. Abigail enjoys spending her free time dancing, reading, and traveling.  She has been a dancer for seven years and takes classes in a variety of different genres including Lyrical, Ballet, Jazz, Pointe, Hip Hop, Modern, and Tap. When she isn’t at the dance studio, she is usually found reading a book. As an avid reader, she will read any and every kind of book. She also enjoys traveling and feels lucky to have taken many vacations with her family. Her very favorite place to visit is San Diego, California. She loves the weather and the positive, laid-back vibe of the city. Abigail also enjoys taking her dogs, Joy (a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel) and Ginger (a Labrador Retriever), for walks around the neighborhood each day. Abigail’s family is very important to her. She has learned from her parents what a diligent work ethic looks like and is going to carry that on to her work at The High Post. Abigail is excited to be working on The High Post as a writer since she enjoys writing, learning about current topics, and sharing her opinions. She looks forward to learning about journalism and further developing her writing skills. Her plans after high school are to further her academic career by attending college. Although she is unsure what she is going to major in, she is looking forward to figuring out what she is passionate about and what she is meant to do in the future.

Comments (0)

All The High Post Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *