Title: Starting Block Routine
General Information about Item:
- Customary Folklore: Rituals, Traditions
- Iain Storm Edmundson was born in Greenwich, Connecticut on December 30th, 1996. Iain is a sophomore at Dartmouth College and a member of Dartmouth’s Varsity Swim Team. Iain began swimming when he was 6 years old, after almost drowning which prompted him to learn. He began swimming competitively at the age of 8 and joined the Greenwich High School Varsity Swim Team in 9th grade. Iain met with members of the Dartmouth Swim Team as a junior (is this right) and quickly knew that he wanted to be a part of the close-knit community of teammates and friends. His experiences swimming freshman year were huge parts of his time at Dartmouth, and now, as a sophomore, he has had the chance to experience the Swim Team from the other side, as a leader and mentor to the incoming freshman swimmers.
- Contextual Data:
- Social/Cultural Context: Iain has his unique pre-race ritual, but the idea of repeating the same set of actions before any competition is one shared by swimmers and athletes of all ages and across the globe. For example, some divers step onto the board exclusively with their right foot to maintain uniformity and rhythm, as well as for the perceived added good fortune associated with the right side.
- Iain, a Dartmouth Varsity swimmer, steps onto the block with his right foot only after listening to hard rock music to pump him up and prepare him for competition.
Associated file (a video, audio, or image file):
Transcript of Associated File:
- Jayson: Did your captains teach you and pass down traditions and routines that you guys go through?Iain: Yeah definitely. So probably one of the biggest things our team does, which I guess isn’t really a trick to get ready for the race, but like the day of the race we always have a cheer. And it’s been on the team for a very long time, and so the captain’s lead us in that, get everyone pumped up for the day. Normally we get a speech from the captains as well, just yeah get everyone pumped up.Jayson: Right before the race do you listen to any music or step forward with the same foot or anything like that?Iain: Right before the race I listen to—I don’t want to say metal but like really heavy rock. So like I really like anything by Jack White, I listen to a lot of his stuff before races, and then before the race I normally step up on the block with my right foot, and my right foot is always in front when I take off.
- Iain makes a habit out of doing the same thing every time he races to clear his head of any distractions. Both mentally and physically, if he is not weighed down by thinking about what to do or how he will prepare, he has less to worry about and more focus and energy to swim with. Additionally, he always uses the same music and foot placement, following the “If Good A Then Good B” structure.
Collector’s Name: Jayson Chojar
- Swimming, Ritual, Superstition, Pre-Race