The Supposed Baby Boom After The Super Bowl Is More Myth Than Truth
There is a popular theory that cites the occurrence of a baby boom after the Super Bowl in the winning city — an increase in local births nine months after a victory as a result of celebratory sex on Super Bowl Sunday. But is this myth backed by actual hard facts, or is it simply an old wives' tale? I, for one, would like to know the truth.
Some other baby boom claims have since been proven to be nothing more than urban legends, including alleged booms following the New York City blackout of 1965 and the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in 2011. Then in 2016, the NFL released an ad that appeared to support the Super Bowl baby boom theory, and it quickly went viral.
The "Super Bowl Babies" spot began with the words: “Data suggests nine months after a Super Bowl victory, winning cities see a rise in births.” The commercial featured individuals who were born nine months after their parents' home team won the Super Bowl. The NFL never revealed the source or sources behind their data, though Bravo reports that the NFL sent out an email to ticket holders, in search of babies conceived during past Super Bowls.
After the ad aired, many began to question the accuracy of the NFL's claims, especially since the NFL did not release where they got their data from. Multiple researchers and news sources went on to dispute the alleged findings. The Seattle Times reported that not only was there no spike in births nine months after the 2014 Seahawks win, but the number of babies born in November actually went down from the November birth rate the year before.
Ashutosh Garg, a master's candidate in data analytics from the North Carolina State University, decided to take it a step further. He studied monthly birth data in 21 Super Bowl winning cities between 1994 and 2014. Garg found only eight occasions where there were more babies born in the winning year than the year before, and 12 where there were fewer births. When the New England Patriots won two Super Bowls in a row, there was actually no change at all. Garg came to the conclusion that overall, the change in birth rate was not consistent. Above all, he said in his report, it's important to remember that "correlation does not imply causation."
Essentially, Super Bowl babies may exist, but you can't really call it a trend. There just isn't enough evidence to back it up. And if you need any more convincing that the Super Bowl isn't exactly a popular time to get it on — either with your partner or by yourself — listen up. In 2014, Pornhub released data that showed a 51 and 61 percent drop in site traffic in the teams' respective cities during the Super Bowl. Clearly people are too busy tuning in to the game (and the commercials!) to watch anything else.
If your team wins the Super Bowl, a celebratory kiss is definitely in order... and maybe you two will go all the way to the end zone. If you do score on Super Bowl Sunday, though, your guy is probably wearing protective gear. On the off chance that you two end up with a Super Bowl baby, you're surprisingly one of the few. And, hey, you can always audition him or her for the next NFL commercial.
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