Is That Even a Sport?

cheese rolling

By Izzy Hunter

As seen in Pegasus Pages, March 2013.

CLC has a great variety of sports on offer, but here are a few more that you perhaps might want to consider…

1. Man vs. Horse

If you thought the sport had anything to do with strength, then you’re wrong. The annual Man vs. Horse Marathon requires stamina and agility. Taking place in the Welsh town of Llanwrtyd Wells, the marathon puts human contestants up against mounted horse contestants.

The event started in 1980, when a landlord decided to hold the event after hearing two men arguing about whether or not an individual could beat a horse in a cross country race.

2. Where Love is the Key to Success

First introduced in Finland, wifecarrying is an actual sport where male competitors race while carrying a female team mate. The objective is for the male to carry the female through a special obstacle course in the fastest time. Major competitions are held in Sonkajarvi, Finland, Monona, Wisconsin, and Marquette.

3. A Murky Swim

Even though it does seem kind of gross, bog snorkelling is a sporting event where competitors swim in a water-filled trench cut through a peat bog. Competitors must wear snorkels and flippers and can only complete the course by swimming with their flippers and not using traditional swimming techniques.

4. Putting your Toe to Good Use

As a popular activity for children, toe wrestling is now a competitive sport. The World Toe Wrestling Competition first started at a pub in Derbyshire in 1976. Locals thought it would be a great idea to hold a competition where individuals locked toes together and forced their opponent’s foot to the ground. The organisers applied in 1997 to get the sport included in the Olympics, but unfortunately, it was not accepted.

5. Arms and Fists of Steel

Despite not being well-renowned in the media, fist ball is an old sport that’s practiced all over the world. Like tennis and volleyball, the purpose of the sport is to hit the ball with your fist or arm and place it in the opponent’s half where they won’t get to it. After passing the net, the ball may be contacted up to three times by the five players on each team.

6. Underwater Fun

Octopush (also known as underwater hockey) is a non-contact sport where two teams compete to manoeuvre a puck across the bottom of a swimming pool and into “goals”. Just like hockey but underwater, the game has actually become popular in countries like the UK, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and South Africa.

7. From Playground to Pitch

Even though it’s not entirely unusual, the fact that there is a kickball league is fun, yet weird. The popular playground game has now become a competitive sport with the creation of the World Adult Kickball Association.

8. Brains and Brawl

If you’re looking for a sport that combines strength as well as intelligence, then chess boxing is for you. The sport is a combination of boxing and chess with the different games alternating after each round. A match between two individuals lasts up to eleven rounds, starting with a four minute chess round and followed by two minutes of boxing.

9. Holy Cheese!

Cheese rolling is probably one of the simplest sports out there. From the top of hill, a round of Double Gloucester cheese is rolled and competitors chase after it. The first individual across the finish line at the bottom of the hill wins [the cheese, of course].

Competitors aim to catch the rolling cheese but this rarely happens as it has a one second head start and can reach speeds up to 112 km/hr. In 1997, the cheese took a wrong turn down the hill and accidentally injured a spectator.

10. Grow, Hair, Grow

Many think facial hair can make a man more masculine, but is it a sport? The World Beard and Moustache Championships is a competition where men show off their extraordinary beards and moustaches.

Photography: 1. emmablackbird on Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0); 2. brizzle born and bred on Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0).

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