We Answered Extremely Random Questions People Had About The Olympics
Curious how dressage horses are transported overseas. Obviously a plane, but like ... how?
Horses are loaded in two per stall. They fly with a staff of vets and groomers who, among other things, try to make sure they stay calm. Stallions travel at the front of the plane so that they're not distracted by the mares. And just like people, they need passports.
Why do divers immediately hit the shower as soon as they're out of the pool?
The pool is cold and can cause their muscles to cramp. The warm water of the shower helps keep the muscles loose. That's also why you're increasingly seeing divers sitting in a hot tub between dives.
How are lanes assigned in Olympic swimming?
A swimmer ends up in a particular lane depending on their qualifying time. The fastest gets the center lane. Lanes 3 and 5 go to the next fastest. That, according to the explanation here, is why you'll often find the gold-medal favorite in Lane 4.
Why do we hear whistling throughout some swim events?
The whistles are how coaches communicate with the swimmers. The Focus did a really interesting piece about it, where the piece broke down the different kinds of whistles. Basically, the whistles signal to the swimmers "where they stand in the race and what to do."
Why do gymnasts rub that white powder on their hands before a routine?
It absorbs the sweat off their hands, helps them keep a better grip on the parallel bars and increases the friction between the hands and the bars.
Why does everyone keep referring to these 2021 Games as "Tokyo 2020"?
That's what the IOC decided when it announced the postponement last year. Part of the reason: money. "Torches, medals, other branding items and merchandise were already being made using the name 'Tokyo 2020,' and a name change would have meant additional costs," a Tokyo organizing committee source told Yahoo Sports.