If you want to win, wear red.

Discussion in 'Fencing Discussion' started by Bayou Bum, Jun 24, 2005.

  1. Bayou Bum

    Bayou Bum Rookie

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    If you want to win, wear red.

    That's the advice of a group of British anthropologists who surveyed four sports at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens--boxing, tae kwon do, Greco-Roman wrestling, and freestyle wrestling--and determined that competitors were more likely to win if they wore red uniforms no matter which sport they played.

    "Across a range of sports, we find that wearing red is consistently associated with a higher probability of winning," Russell A. Hill and Robert A. Barton of the University of Durham in England wrote in the journal Nature. "If color has no effect on the outcome of contests, the number of winners wearing red should be statistically indistinguishable from the number of winners wearing blue."

    Red signals intimidation in the world of animals and shows their aggression, particularly among males where scarlet markings imply dominance. Hill and Barton surmise that red has a similar effect in human beings, especially when they compete athletically. "Whether red suppresses the testosterone of the opponent or boosts the testosterone of the individual wearing red, we don't know at the moment. We're going to look at that," Barton told the BBC News. "My hunch is that there is a bit of both going on."

    In this study, the researchers randomly assigned some of the 2004 Olympic athletes to wear red or blue uniforms or protective gear. The results? Those who wore red won about 55 percent of the competitions in all four of the events. This discrepancy was even more marked when there was little difference between the competitors' skill levels; in these close victories, more than 60 percent of the winners wore red.

    Hill and Barton think this also applies to team sports. They did a preliminary analysis of the Euro 2004 international soccer tournament where teams wore different colored jerseys. The teams that scored the most goals and won more frequently were also the ones who wore predominantly red-colored jerseys, compared with those who wore blue or white.

    The big question: Why is red a winning color? The researchers have no clue. It does deliver a clear, unspoken message of vigor and danger, which is why stop signs are red. Hill and Barton claim the effect could be from a deep-seated evolutionary response that works subconsciously to put opponents on their back foot, notes the BBC News.

    While not all teams that wear red win, The Associated Press lists some recent American sports winners that come to mind: the Boston Red Sox, New England Patriots, the Detroit Pistons, the USC Trojans, and even Tiger Woods in his trademark red shirt.
     
  2. Queen of Hearts

    Queen of Hearts Rookie

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    interesting...i still prefer blue. Mainly cause it's my clubs color, but also cause blue sharpie doesnt smell as bad as red sharpie, and those of you who know me (very few of you do), know I like coloring the tips of my hair blue... :p
     
  3. veeco

    veeco Podium

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    Maybe it's just because Chinese athletes snatched so many medals last year.
     
  4. Tiwaz

    Tiwaz Rookie

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    i always think people who fence in red masks look really embarrassed. :huh:
     
  5. lefty_monster

    lefty_monster Rookie

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    cool. blue is still may favorite color. And my whites are still white. And my headscarf still has skulls on it...

    Did the article say anything about skulls? (I only really read the beginning. I skimmed the rest...) :rolleyes:
     
  6. dreamer90024

    dreamer90024 Rookie

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    I've heard of this, but I must admit the extent of my applying it has been to use a red hair tie in competition once (though I did really well). I do have an Allstar jacket though...
     
  7. FriendlyMonkey

    FriendlyMonkey Rookie

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    Guess I'll wear red socks now. :p
     
  8. Hurriranger

    Hurriranger Rookie

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    does maroon count?
     
  9. Sciurus-Rex

    Sciurus-Rex Rookie

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    Please try to avoid using that sort of label. It's insulting to sabre fencers.
    And, yes, such "slow" learners can count, but they --

    Oh. Maroon. Nevermind.
     
  10. nylebuss

    nylebuss Rookie

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    Heh... So that is why my schools team dominates the area. Our red socks are intimidating... :cough: Heh... Does more red make it more intimidating? Say a red lame, red mask, red socks, red shoes, red tip tape... Nevermind all that red would just be scary...
     
  11. RebelFencer

    RebelFencer Podium

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    haha, You seem to be forgetting two important teams: NFA (read: me and sasha) and Vandy (read: Casper and Jeff Breen)...Hell, even Rhodes and Chatt. (read: Kroeker and Ballew). Baylor's good, but I wouldn't call them dominant.

    I don't know though, I seem to have fenced better when my hair wasn't red..ish.
     
  12. Symon

    Symon Rookie

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    wear red to win ehh??? :huh:



    ..........rushes off to get him self some lucky red underpants
     
  13. D+F+P=Hadouken!

    D+F+P=Hadouken! Rookie

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    Dont forget Teitenburg with Vandy, and Weathington at ChatFC..... Nyle, once Nathaniel and Jonathan Graduate, your team is screeeewwweeed. I mean, are you seriously gonna rely on rick and megan to win those medals? Lol, Baylor cracks me up.

    Btw, for dominance, do you recall who took 1st and who took 2nd in the mixed foil at the last vandy tournament?
     
  14. Goofy

    Goofy Rookie

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    Just for fun I checked the last Vandy (assuming it is Vanderbilt) mixed open foil results from their club site. Out of 37 competitors, I see Baylor Sch in three out of the top four spots (2-3-3), one of the names you mention doesn't appear until 13, the other name doesn't appear at all, and ChatFC doesn't appear until 25. Club-wise the best results were VUFC and Baylor Sch, and they were about even.

    Not sure how it ties to the study that started this thread, but Baylor wears red, right?
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2005
  15. broncofencer

    broncofencer Rookie

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    There are several "studies" like this out there. I even recall one where you could determine your best competitive color by personality type. I will see if I can find it and post it here.
     
  16. RebelFencer

    RebelFencer Podium

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    A lot of the names mentioned are Epeeists primarily. NFA is an all Epee' club and Chatt. pretty much is as well. As for myself, I had an off tournament at Vandy, but managed top 10 at the CCO (after losing the red hair :p ). Oh well though, this is petty stuff not worth derailing an interesting thread over.
     
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  17. Goofy

    Goofy Rookie

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    That's true.
     
  18. esskreemr

    esskreemr Din Ă„lskling

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    Ahahahahahahahahahahaha. :D
     
  19. Goofy

    Goofy Rookie

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    How about this for discussion? Here are the 2005 NCAA Fencing Championships Top-20 teams, and apologies if the exact color shade is incorrect (of course, the colors would mainly be seen on the warmup suits, and not on the piste):

    1 Notre Dame: blue/gold
    2 Ohio State University: red/white
    3 St. John's University: red/white
    4 Pennsylvania State University: blue/white
    5 Columbia/Barnard: blue/white
    6 Harvard University: red/white
    7 Pennsylvania, University: blue/red
    8 Princeton University: orange/black
    9 New York University: purple/white
    10 Wayne State University: green/gold
    11 Stanford University: red/white
    12 Northwestern University: purple/white
    13 Duke University: blue/white
    14 Cal State, Fullerton: blue/orange
    15 U.S. Air Force Academy: blue/white
    16 Rutgers University: red/white
    17 Yale University: blue/white
    18 U.C. San Diego: blue/gold
    19 UNC, Chapel Hill: blue/white
    20T Drew University: blue/green
    20T M.I.T.: red/white

    Primary Blue: 11 (1-4-5-7-13-14-15-17-18-19-20)
    Primary Red: 6 (2-3-6-11-16-20)
    Primary Other: 4 (8-9-10-12)
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2005
  20. Ordway

    Ordway Rookie

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    Hm, maybe there's something to it... UMass has been National Club Champion twice so far, and the UMass colors are maroon and white. We always used to say that the mass of maroon t-shirts as the UMass squads walked into a gym would psych out the opposing teams, because it would emphasize our solidarity, etc. Maybe it was really the color!

    Frankly, I've always been extremely glad that my two-time alma mater has such attractive school colors. I got my master's from UNC Chapel Hill, which has an amazingly unattractive shade of pale blue as its main color. Really, it's quite ugly. Fortunately, I have no attachment to UNC at all, so I can stick with maroon/white whenever I want to show college pride.
     

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