Another Sunday night approaches and while many people are gearing up for an exciting night of football, I am gearing up for an exciting night of eating Cheetos and watching Netflix in my bed.
I have never been a big fan of the “typical” sports like football, basketball or hockey. However, over the years of trying to find ways to entertain myself, I have come across a lot of less popular sports that have caught my attention, and I feel deserve more appreciation.
While there are many outlandish and absurd “sports” out there in the world, I want to focus on relatively normal sports that coast under the radar or only a certain niche group of people pay attention to. All of the sports I have chosen also happen to all be official Olympic Sports.
Without further ado, here are some of the sports, in no particular order, that I think deserve more recognition:
Ping Pong is extremely entertaining to watch. Now, if you’ve ever played ping pong before you may be pretty skeptical about how it can be an exciting sport to watch. However, anyone who has actually seen a professional ping pong tournament would beg to differ.
Games are action-packed with opponents rapidly hitting a ping pong ball back and forth. The pace at which the players move is not human and leaves whoever is watching in a trance. Whether you understand the rules or not, the intensity of this game will draw in any viewer.
Now this one might be slightly bias since I did gymnastics as a kid but I still think everyone should give watching it a chance. First of all, I believe that gymnasts, both male and female, are some of the greatest athletes. If you ever watch what they do it obviously requires an immense amount of discipline and strength. It’s just plain impressive.
Having done gymnastics gives me a little more appreciation for the sport, but watching people fly through the air, balance on a four inch-wide beam and flip between bars is truly mesmerizing.
Now for the winter sports.
On the surface, it doesn’t seem like much goes into ski jumping, but it is in fact incredibly difficult. I went to the stop of the Holmenkollbakken ski jump located in Oslo, Norway. If you ever want to really solidify your fear of heights then I highly recommend going to the top of a ski jump because they are terrifying.
In case you don’t know anything about the sport, a ski jumper goes to the top of one of these extremely tall jumps (the ski jump in Norway is 197 feet tall), go straight down the high at top speeds and then flies off the end of it. Watching these jumpers soar through the air is both horrifying and captivating at the same time. The most insane part is that these people land these jumps.
Last but certainly not least, ski racing is a sport I think everyone should watch. Again, there may be some bias because I personally love skiing so much, but I believe just about anyone can respect the sport and what these athletes put into it.
There are many different types of ski races but my personal favorite to watch are the slalom races. Skiers must maneuver quickly through poles placed close together down the hill. If any pole is missed, the skier must either go back up through the pole or is eliminated. This race is extremely fast-paced and impossible to turn your head away from.
From one person who hates football to another, don’t give up sports all together just because the “basic” ones don’t catch your interest. There are plenty of sports out there and there is certainly something out there for everyone.