Turns out, mainstream sports are so passé when it comes to the world of competitive wife carrying and toe wrestling. And those aren’t even the wackiest sports we’ve been benched from. Check out the list of sports below that involve everything from canines to ironing boards.
1. Wife Carrying
Some men complain about getting their wives off their backs — but not in this sport. Originating in Sonkajarvi, Finland, wife carrying is a sport in which male competitors race to carry their wives through an obstacle course.
At the annual North American Wife Carrying Championship, winners receive the traditional prize of the wife’s weight in beer, five times her weight in cash and an entry into the World Championship in Finland.
2. Chess Boxing
Chess boxing is exactly what it sounds like — a hybrid of knocking out and checkmating opponents. The battle consists of 11 rounds in which competitors alternate between playing traditional chess and boxing.
3. Cheese Rolling
Competitors take part in the annual Cheese-Rolling event at Cooper’s Hill in Gloucestershire, U.K. Here’s how it works: a large cheese wheel is rolled down a steep hill, and competitors race after it. The first person to reach the bottom of the hill wins the cheese. It may not sound dangerous, but the steepness of the hill has resulted in several injuries.
4. Extreme Ironing
Extreme sport or performance art? Possibly both. Competitors who call themselves “ironists” go to a remote location and iron their clothes. The domestic chore has been performed underwater, hanging from cliffs, while skiing or snowboarding and even on top of vehicles.
5. Egg Throwing
According to the World Egg Throwing Federation, egg throwing “has been a sport enjoyed by millions of people since early humans discovered the delight of watching a failure of another to catch a tossed egg.” Eggheads have the opportunity to participate in the annual World Egg Throwing Championship, which involves a variation of games, in Swaton, England.
6. Underwater Hockey
Field hockey, ice hockey and now… underwater hockey? Yep. Also known as Octopush, this sport is played worldwide and involves two teams trying to push a puck using a stick across the floor of a swimming pool into the opposing team’s goal. The sport has its own World Championship, which first took place in 1980.
7. Shin Kicking
Shin kicking takes manliness to a whole new level. Originating in England in the early 17th century, the combat sport involves two contestants attempting to kick each other on the shin until one hits the ground. The Shin-Kicking World Championship is part of the Cotswold Olimpick Games, an annual event held on Dover’s Hill, north of the English town Chippen Campden.
8. Toe Wrestling
Perfectly summed up by its name, toe wrestling involves competitors going toe-to-toe. The unusual sport dates back to 1976, when the Brits were looking to gain a world sports title. Rules are simple: with socks and shoes off, two competitors interlock their toes and try to “pin” down their opponent’s foot.
9. Sepak Takraw
Native to Southeast Asia, sepak takraw is similar to what we know as volleyball. The catch? Players can pass around the ball using anything but their arms, and the game is played with a ball of dried palm leaves.
10. Musical Canine Freestyle
Once again, dogs prove they are a man’s best friend. Combining tricks, dance and obedience training, musical canine freestyle is a sport where canines and humans perform together. Talk about teamwork. The sport is relatively new, but is on the rise (not to mention absolutely adorable) with competitions taking place worldwide.
BEFORE YOU GO