Are you tired of playing - and watching - the same old sports? Can’t decide between a game of hockey or a few laps around the pool? If your interests vary from boxing to chess and soccer to gymnastics, check out a couple of lesser known, yet rather challenging sports from around the globe.
If you’re looking for a sport that challenges opponents’ intellect, as well as their fists, perhaps the sport you’re looking for is Chess Boxing. This sport proves that chess isn’t for wimps, nor is boxing a sport without brains. Competitors in this sport rely on their sharpened skills and strategies, using both mind and muscle, as matches alternating between the ring and the board reveal the most well rounded champion. The challenge starts with a round of chess, then a boxing match and repeats with a minute long break between each to allow opponents to take off their gloves and switch their mindset. There are six rounds of chess lasting four minutes each, and five bouts of boxing lasting three minutes each. Each player is given 12 minutes on the chess clock. The winner can be determined a number of ways: in chess rounds by checkmate or timing out, in the boxing rounds either by referee call or KO or in either boxing or chess by defeating the opponent. If the chess game finishes in a stalemate, whichever player leads in the boxing score wins. If the score is tied, the opponent with the black chess pieces becomes the winner by default.
It isn’t ice hockey. It isn’t floor hockey, and it’s not street hockey either - it’s underwater hockey! Officially called Octopush, a name that conjures the image of an under-the-sea entity with eight legs, the sport is similar in many respects to hockey - and different in many other ways as well. First, the “playing field” of choice is a swimming pool, and sticks are far shorter, often comparable in size to spatulas. Also, competitors have to swap hockey helmets for a water polo cap. Heavy pads are traded for goggles, a swimsuit, a snorkel and flippers. The object of the game remains the same: two teams vie to hit the puck and score on each other’s goal at the opposite end of the pool. Teams, which can be all-men, all-women or co-ed, consist of 10 players per team. Players are allowed in the pool six per side at a time; they switch off in a tag team fashion rather rapidly. The nature of the game is exciting and fast-paced, which has led to its spread as a worldwide sport. The real challenge of Octopush is timing your dives to the bottom where the game is played. Opponents still “tackle” each other, just underwater while holding their breath. Clubs have cropped up around the world, but the game is most popular in England where it was invented more than 50 years ago.
Are you a fan of volleyball, gymnastics and soccer? How about Capoeira, a mix of music, martial arts and dance? If so, you’ll love Bossaball! Bossaball is a sport that takes elements from volleyball and soccer, as well as martial arts and dance moves, puts them all together and throws in a lot of “bounce” for good measure. Bossaball is a sensational sport that is as thrilling to watch as it is to play. It is played on a most unique surface - the entire court is a large-scale inflatable. Far from your average “bouncy castle,” the court is specially designed with a net in the center and a trampoline on either side. On this unusual surface, players on two teams of three to five players each are free to safely hone and show off some unbelievable skills as they pass a ball back and forth. The court is versatile and can be set up easily nearly anywhere inside or out. The sport has traveled and been played at events around the world with international headquarters for Bossaball Sports SL in Spain and the Netherlands.
Seek out a new sport, something different.