Though individual athlete’s are known to have some very personal superstitions about what to do or not to do, before, during and after a game, here are some common superstitions in the world of sports.


  • Spitting into your hand before picking up the bat is said to bring good luck.
  • A wad of gum stuck on a player’s hat brings good luck.
  • It is bad luck if a dog walks across the diamond before the first pitch.
  • Some players believe it is good luck to step on one of the bases before running off the field at the end of an inning.
  • It is bad luck to touch the baselines while running off and onto the field between innings.
  • Lending a bat to a fellow player is a serious jinx.
  • Some players actually sleep with their bat to break out of a hitting slump or stay in a groove.
  • If a pitcher is throwing a perfect game or a no-hitter, never speak of it while it’s going on.


  • The last person to shoot a basket during the warm-up will have a good game.
  • Wipe the soles of your sneakers for good luck.
  • Bounce the ball before taking a foul shot for good luck.


  • To continue a winning streak, wear the same clothes.
  • The number 300, a perfect score, on your license plate will increase your score.
  • Carry charms on your bowling bag, in your pockets, or around your neck for good luck.


  • Fish may not bite if a barefoot woman passes you on the way to the dock.
  • Spit on your bait before casting your rod to make fish bite.
  • Throw back your first catch for good luck.
  • It is bad luck to change rods while fishing.
  • Don’t tell anyone how many fish you’ve caught until you’re done or you won’t catch another.


  • Double numbers on a player’s uniform brings good luck.
  • It’s bad luck for a professional football player to take a new number when he is traded to another team.
  • A mascot is an important good luck symbol.


  • Start only with odd-numbered clubs.
  • Balls with a number higher than 4 are bad luck.
  • Carry coins in your pockets for good luck.

Ice Hockey

  • It is bad luck for hockey sticks to lie crossed.
  • It is bad luck to say “shutout” in the locker room before a game.
  • Players believe they’ll win the game if they tap the goalie on his shin pads before a game.
  • Many players must put their pads and skates on in exactly the same order every day.


  • Always put the right foot in the stirrup first.
  • Avoid wearing the color yellow.
  • Always shave before a competition (for men only!)


  • It’s bad luck to hold more than two balls at a time when serving.
  • Avoid wearing the color yellow.
  • Walk around the outside of the court when switching sides for good luck.
  • Avoid stepping on the court lines.


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