There are some sports competitions that we are all familiar with. They are regularly shown on our televisions, played in the local parks, and talked about in the bars we frequent. But, there are some competitions that you might go through your entire life never knowing they even exist.
And that would be a shame. Because you would miss out on some jaw-dropping, mesmerizing, laughter-inducing entertainment. Some of these bizarre sporting events are so outrageous you just might enjoy them.
Some people that like chess and others that like boxing. Sports competitions do not get more contrasted than this. And yet, some genius decided that the two would combine well into one awesome sport. That genius was French artist Enki Bilal, who originally thought up this concept for a comic book he was working on.
A decade later the first official bout of chess boxing was held in real life. And, it is starting to take off. This game requires the use of brains and brawn like no other sporting competition. It consists of 11 rounds of alternate chess and boxing bouts.
Competitors can win be knocking out an opponent, checkmate, or by judge’s decision.
Okay, so you would be hard-pressed to find many people who enjoy doing the ironing. But, when combined with remote locations, an element of danger, and a competitive edge, ironing takes on a whole new image. The Extreme Ironing Bureau says this is “the latest danger sport that combines the thrills of extreme outdoor activity with the satisfaction of a well-pressed shirt.”
Extreme ironing involves taking an ironing board and an iron into extreme locations to press wrinkly clothes. Locations include cliff edges, the top of moving vehicles, and underwater. Participants call themselves the ‘ironists’ and their extreme ironing photographs are popping up all over the place.
The name of this sport might inspire thoughts of carrying your bride a couple of metres over the threshold as is traditionally done after a wedding. However, the Fins have taken wife carrying a step further, 253.5m worth of steps to be precise. The annually held wife-carrying championships in Finland involves male athletes navigating a course with a wife strapped to their back.
Runners don’t have to compete with their own wives either! The Wife Carrying Competition Rules Committee state that the wife being carried “may be your own, the neighbor’s, or may have been found further afield.” In a nutshell, any wife will do. It is worth choosing wisely though because the gruelling course takes the runners through water, mud, and dry land.
The winner gets a nice new mobile phone and the wife’s body weight in beer, so it’s not all for nothing.
Invented in Spain back in 2004, this unusual spectacle combines volleyball with soccer and gymnastics, on a specially designed inflatable court. A net sits between two trampolines and teams (consisting of 3 to 5 players) can hit the ball with any part of their body so long as it clears the net by the 6th hit.
It is an insanely fun game to watch, and no doubt play. But good luck getting this game going at the local park.
The Coopers Hill Cheese Rolling and Wake competition is an annual event held in Gloucester, England. And yes it is just as you imagine it to be. A group of people chase a roll of Gloucester cheese down a very steep hill, with hilarious and sometimes bone breaking consequences.
The aim of the game to is to catch the cheese, of course, but as this rolling ball of coagulated milk can get up to speeds of 70mph the winner is usually the one who crosses the finish line first. Their prize? Why the freshly rolled cheese of course!
As you would expect, over the years there have been numerous injuries at this event, which might explain why no one officially manages it anymore. These days it is more of a spontaneous sporting event, but participants are no less dedicated to winning.
Just when you thought sporting competitions couldn’t get any more bizarre we get dog dancing. Technically more art than sport, this unusual pastime combines coaching, dance, and discipline with man’s best friend. It is the surest sign yet of people’s yearning for sporting events that don’t involve balls.
Contests are held in the United Kingdom, United States, Japan, and several other countries.
Bo-taoshi, meaning “pole-pulldown”, is a beautifully dangerous Japanese sport traditionally played by cadets at National Defence Academy of Japan. It is also commonly played at school sports days. Yes, with kids!
The game is best described as a mixture of rugby, king of the hill, and capture-the-flag. However, with teams of 150 players on the field, this game is often closer to all-out war than sports.
The aim of the game is to pull down the opposing team’s pole before the other team reaches the same goal. Sounds simple enough right? Not when you consider that face kicking, body slamming, and violent scrums are all part of the game.
Man vs. Horse
Back in 1980, local pub owner, Gordon Green overheard a debate between two of his patrons. These two, who had probably downed several pints of lager, were arguing whether a man could beat a horse in a marathon. Upon hearing this intriguing conversation, a lightbulb went off in Gordon’s head.
It is not clear whether Gordon Green was sipping pints that night as well, but it is said that this is how the man vs. horse competition came about. Now, every June, competitors gather in the Welsh town of Llanwrtyd. Their aim? To get to the finish line 22 miles away before a horse.
The course takes competitors up steep hills, through bogs, and over tough tarmac. It is a gruelling and dangerous race even without horses bearing down on the human runners. And to answer the question on everyone’s lips, man can beat a horse in a race. Sometimes.
Cardboard Tube Duelling
The thing with most popular sporting events these days is that they are just too serious. Well, the Cardboard Tube Fighting League (I didn’t make that up), are hoping to change all that. Their philosophy goes like this: People need more ways to play and take themselves less seriously.
And so we have cardboard tube duelling. The basic aim of the game is to whack your opponent’s cardboard tube until it breaks. If this is achieved, you will be crowned the winner. If both your tubes break, then you are both losers. Oh, and try not to hit your opponent in the face. That is frowned upon.
This “sporting event” is as hilarious as it sounds. It is also possibly the most painful single player sport around. But, the participants get paid a decent sum of money for a few seconds of agony, and everybody else gets some side-splitting entertainment.
The aim of the game is simple; do a better belly flop than your competitors. Although, just how they judge the criteria for the perfect belly flop is a mystery.
You don’t have to contend with dull ball games on Sunday television anymore folks. There is a whole world of hilarious, funny, and highly competitive sporting events out there. However, there are quite a few that are not safe for trying at my home.