Unravelling stereotypes: The hidden habits of elite athletes | Globalnews.ca

Unravelling stereotypes: The hidden habits of elite athletes  | Globalnews.ca

2021-08-14 18:30:51

NHL enforcer Georges Laraque had a secret.

“I wasn’t clearly raving about it within the dressing room.”

The 13-year league veteran saved his pre-game routine to himself for years.

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“I didn’t inform the blokes that once I (went) to the grocery retailer and people little magazines that may offer you a sneak preview of the following week, I might get these. After which if any individual ever noticed me, I might say it’s for my mother or the neighbour or no matter.”

These magazines? They coated the world of daytime drama.

The pregame routine? Forward of sport evening, Laraque would watch the long-running cleaning soap opera Days of Our Lives.

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“As a result of the job that I had there was a lot stress, that was a manner — a routine that I had — that my physique form of knew was the time to chill out and take a nap after that.”

Georges Laraque


Linesman Jonny Murray, proper, will get caught between Nashville Predators’ Stu Grimson, left, and Edmonton Oilers’ Georges Laraque (27) throughout a combat within the first interval Saturday, Dec. 8, 2001, in Nashville, Tenn. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Mark Humphrey.


THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Mark Humphrey

The pregame routines and rituals of athletes go far past the stereotypical jock-jam soundtrack.

With needles in hand within the Olympic stands, Britain’s Tom Daley made headlines all over the world not only for his gold- and bronze-medal performances but in addition for his poolside pastime — knitting.

After successful the lads’s synchronized diving occasion, Daley shared on his Instagram account that the craft helps him keep calm.

“The one factor that has saved me sane all through this entire course of is my love for knitting and crochet and all issues stitching,” stated Daley.

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He paperwork initiatives created for himself, his husband, their younger son and mates on his Instagram web page, MadeWithLovebyTomDaley.

That features a knitted pouch for his gold medal, with a Union Jack on one aspect and the Japanese flag on the opposite.

It’s a sample a former CFL participant reads completely.

“While you prepped all week for a sport, you form of need to get your thoughts off it,” says Trent Brown.

So Brown, a defensive again for Edmonton’s soccer membership by means of the Nineteen Nineties, kicked off a brand new customized. It wasn’t well-liked with the coaches.

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“We began a ritual to hacky sack with the soccer,” he shares, searching over Commonwealth Stadium.

“They might look on the market and say, ‘What are these guys doing? That’s acquired nothing to do with soccer.’”

However then got here the 1996 Gray Cup underneath coach Ron Lancaster.

“Eddie Brown working down the sidelines within the snow, drops the cross. And kicks it again up into his hand. Ronnie was so excited,” recounts Brown. “I’ll always remember, he comes working down the sideline. He excessive fives me, he provides me a giant hug and he goes, ‘Browny, you possibly can play hacky sack everytime you need!’”

For an Olympic excessive jumper and four-time Canadian champion, traditional comedy was the ticket.

“Once I was competing I’d need to watch one thing humorous,” says Dr. Nicole Forrester, now a psychological efficiency guide.

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She names the legendary John Sweet-Steve Martin Planes, Trains and Vehicles as her pre-competition automobile of selection.


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“You’re balancing for arousal ranges, so whether or not you’re too fired up or making an attempt to remain calm or whether or not you might want to pump your self up a little bit bit extra. So there’s a little bit bit that form of inside dialogue that’s occurring,” explains Forrester of working with athletes to organize mentally.

Favorite hobbies may present distraction from Olympic-sized stress.

“Usually once I’m working with athletes it’s about getting them to manage the controllable and never specializing in the issues that they will’t management,” says Forrester.

Laraque and Brown agree that psychological state is a big a part of managing efficiency.

“There’s a number of nice, nice athletes on the market, and the factor that separates them is the psychological aspect of the sport,” says Brown. “The psychological aspect of the sport is 50 per cent of the sport, definitely.

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“Those that may carry out sport after sport are those which have that psychological edge. And if you discover one thing that works, helps you keep free, will get you in the appropriate mind set you simply need to carry on doing it.”

As for his one-time cleaning soap secret? Laraque says “we do no matter works and work for me and I’m glad. And I say so now.”

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