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The World’s Most Bizarre Competitions

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at MSU chapter.

Over the weekend, I went down a rabbit hole on social media where I came across the most obscure and weirdest (in my opinion) competitions I have ever seen. From toe wrestling to chasing cheese wheels, you can now try your hand at sports you didn’t even know existed. 

  1. Toe Wrestling:

If a Thumb War isn’t good enough for you, why not try your “hand” at toe wrestling? This sport is like arm wrestling, but for your feet. You have a podium (they call it a “toedium”) with walls on either side used to lock down your toes. You wrestle until one of the contestant’s toes/feet hit the wall, which is when they lose. These championships are held every year in the Haig Bar in Derbyshire, England. 

  1. Cooper’s Hill Cheese-Rolling and Wake:

If your lifelong dream has been to chase a wheel of cheese down a hill, this competition is for you. Every year, a 7-9 pound wheel of Double Gloucester cheese is rolled down Cooper’s Hill in Brockworth, Gloucestershire, England. Participants chase down this cheese wheel and whoever catches it first is declared the winner. This is an extremely arduous and dangerous task, since cheese wheels can reach speeds of around 70mph (or 110 km/h). Since humans cannot physically run 70mph to catch a wheel of cheese, this competition can also be won by the first person to reach the bottom of the hill. And if you’re lactose intolerant and can’t eat cheese, you may as well chase it down a hill!

  1. Air Guitar Championship:

“Make Air, Not War” is the slogan of this world championship. Its purpose is to promote world peace with the message: “Wars will end, climate change will stop, and all bad things will vanish when all the people in the world play the air guitar. If you are holding an air guitar, you can’t be holding a gun.” This annual event takes place in Oulu, Finland and was first held in 1996. Genres like rock and metal are often seen as being mimicked on the air guitars. The better you perform, the higher chance you have of winning. Remember, no real instruments allowed!

  1. Worm Charming:

In this competition, you have to “charm” as many worms as you can out of a plot of land, and whoever has the most worms by the end is declared the winner. No digging is allowed. Participants must employ elaborate contraptions to entice the worm into surfacing, after which they are collected into a container with moist compost. Worms are very sensitive to sounds and vibrations, and many participants often thump and bang on the ground to get the worms to surface. 

These quirky contests prove that there are no limits to creativity.  Maybe you find these competitions funny to read about, or maybe they’re something to add to your bucket list. Eccentric endeavors like these might just be the beginning of a whole new level of entertainment and camaraderie.

Sanskriti is an undergraduate astrophysics major who loves to read and is very passionate about making and eating dumplings. She is the current Vice President of the Astronomy Club at Michigan State University, and can often be found hunting for new horror podcasts to listen to.