Anthropology: Swimming and Pool Essay

Submitted By aeanter
Words: 1442
Pages: 6

Allie Anter
Sociology 112
Final Paper
December 7th, 2012
Sports Teams My group chose to observe sports teams and the difference between home and away games. We decided to break it into sections that depended on what sports we each played in high school, or continue to play in college. The things that we focused on while doing our research were the difference in crowds, rituals that the teams had for home/away games, and why the away games might be more difficult for the athletes. I was on the swim team in high school, so I focused the majority of my research on that. In discussion with my group, we compared and contrasted our experiences. Some of what I found was similar with other sports, but some was obviously different. For my swim team, home games were easier to compete at. Our team had cheers that we would do in the pool after warm up and before the national anthem was sang. We would all stand at the shallow end of the pool in a circle, and the team captains would lead the cheers. We would all yell and get pumped up about winning the meet. This would get us excited and ready to swim our hardest. At home meets, our team captains made a warm up cd, that had music on it that was upbeat and would put us in a good mood before the meet. It was played really loud over the sound system so that we could hear it even when we were under the water. This was usually the same cd for every home game, so it became a ritual for us. Home games typically have more fans come to cheer on the team, because it is easier for them to make it because they do not have to drive to another city. Most fans are parents and siblings of the swimmers, and the occasional friends. At my high school, swimming did not have a big fan base with students. The parents did a good job of being excited for their daughter and cheering them on. You would often see a parent with a pin of their daughters swimming picture in it, to show their support. Most parents also wore red and blue, which were my schools colors, or even a shirt that had something written on it about swimming. Away games were a little bit different than home games. My team was always a little less comfortable because we could not do the usual stuff that we would do before a meet. We did not do our cheers in the pool, or play our own cd. Sometimes the other team played music, but since it was different and we were not use to it, it did not pump us up as much. Swimming in different pool than what we were used to practicing in, is also a factor in how comfortable we were. If the temperature of the water is different, then that can effect how we do overall in the competition. Another factor is the starting blocks that are used to dive off of in the beginning of each race. All blocks are different and feel different under a swimmers feet, for example if they are more slippery or more rough than the ones that we were used to, then it could make a difference in the dive that we begin our race with. If we mess up on our dive, then that could add seconds to our time that would determine whether we win the race or not. Another thing that was different in the opposing schools pool, that might not seem like a big deal is actually the tiles in pool. When one is swimming, you look at the bottom and the sides of the pool, and it takes a while to get used to the different look of a pool. If the tiles are really distracting, or they are a different color then what swimmers are used to then, it might effect the final times of the swimmers. Overall, the team was less comfortable in a different pool at away games. The amount of fans that come to away games was not very many. Some parents would come, but most would not because they would have to drive to a different city to watch their daughter compete. Since there are less people there to cheer them on, the swimmers are less enthused about the meet. The swimmers also have to travel there, sometimes long distances, on a bus which makes them tired when they…