Examining different athletes’ pregame routines


Patrick Agustin

Junior Joy Dau warms up before a varsity girls basketball game.

Amanda Gershoni, Sports Writer

A pre-game routine is defined as a sequence of task-relevant thoughts and actions which an athlete engages in systematically prior to his or her performance of a specific sport skill. People often state that a “pre-game” routine can make or break your performance in an upcoming game. The routine can consist of a certain genre of music, specific meals, putting one shoe on before the other, wearing something special, etc. Yet, some Richard Montgomery student-athletes take pre-game routines to the next level.

“After school, I go to shoot around and then take a nap in the gym listening to my pre-game music like No Sucker by Lil Baby to lock in for 20 minutes,” junior girls basketball center Joy Dau said. Unlike Dau, some student-athletes focus on the way they may present themselves. “The only real routine I have is wearing space buns in my hair,” senior girls lacrosse captain Davanee McNairy said. “I have played with my hair like that for years now and I don’t think I’ll ever change.” As freshman girl’s lacrosse player Emerson Koenig prepares for her lacrosse games, she is still optimistic about a specific pre-game routine. “Most of the time I get ready early then listen to pump-up music with my sister, and sometimes we get a hype speech from a friend,” Koenig said.

As many athletes around the world partake in a pre-game routine, it is the effect it gives on the way athletes play the game that really matters. “A big part of my routine is simply just getting into the mental headspace to make a save and especially as a goalie, you need a good mentality in order to play well,” sophomore varsity girl’s lacrosse goalie Meredith Kearns said. This routine can help you to be as ready as you can be to deliver the performance you want. It allows you to eliminate distractions, build self-confidence, reduce anxiety, and narrow your focus.

“On game days in the morning, I have a greek yogurt and a banana and on game days in the afternoon and I have more time to digest I’ll have a bagel and a banana,” sophomore girls soccer midfielder Mckinley Heaven said. “I always eat a banana,” Heaven said, proving that food is a large aspect of her pre-game routine. Aspects of an athlete’s religion are known to be a large focus within a pre-game routine for a lot of people. “Before any game I always pray,” freshman boy’s soccer player Kamari People said. On the other hand, freshman boys hockey player Connor Rosier maintains his coolness and isn’t set on a specific routine. “I always eat something healthy and drink a ton of water and that’s really all,” Rosier said.

Overall, a pre-game routine for each athlete around the globe is going to be different. Whether it’s a hairstyle, a specific song or even the way somebody eats, routines are only beneficial to those who choose to use them in a positive way.