It’s not uncommon for sports fans to travel far and wide in support of their teams. It’s a really good excuse to travel. However, most people follow a small group of sports that will don’t stray too far off the beaten track. We have compiled a list of weird and wonderful sports and the countries
Chess Boxing, England or Germany.
Yes. Chess. Boxing. This is a hybrid sport that does exactly what it says on the tin. The game consists of 11 rounds which alternate between chess and boxing. Recently a governing body was established so this sport is beginning to grow. Right now the best places to see it are in London or throughout Germany.
Calcio Fiorentino, Florence
An interesting one for any football historians. Matches last 50 mins on a pitch of sand. Each team has 27 players and no subs can be made. The aim is to get the ball into the others players net and any means can be used (head butting punching elbowing choking). The prize used to be a free cow and has since been reduced to a free dinner for the winners.
Finger Wrestling, Germany.
This one is played mainly in the Bavaria region of Germany and is pretty simple. Opponents sit facing each other with a piece of string connecting their fingers. When the referee says go the players pull as hard as they can. The winner is the person who pulls their opponent over the table they are sitting at. Oh, and they wear lederhosen.
Pehlivan (Oil Wrestling) Turkey and Greece.
Ok, this one might not be everyone’s cup of tea. Originally played in both Greece and Turkey this game is starting to grow with people beginning to wrestle in the Netherlands and Japan. The aim is simple you get oiled up and try to wrestle your opponent to the ground.
Kabaddi, South Asia and India.
The rules of Kabaddi are pretty simple. Two teams occupy their own half of the Kabaddi court, the aim of the game is to send a player into the other teams half to try touch a player of the opposition and escape back to his half all while chanting “Kabaddi, kabaddi, kabaddi.” This one actually gets quite a bit of TV coverage. If you know what’s going on it makes for some exciting viewing.
Wife Carrying, Sonkajarvi, Finland.
This one is a sight to behold. Male runners carry their wives on their backs through an obstacle course and the fastest time is the winner. Winners get a traditional prize of five times his wife’s weight in beer and five times her weight in cash. This one does look particularly bizarre, especially when they carry their wives upside down.