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Top 5 freakishly challenging sports

redflame
SENIOR ANALYST
Top 5 / Top 10
Modified 19 Dec 2019, 19:57 IST

Humanity’s major share of entertainment has been sports; an avenue that’s involved the entire spectrum of our indulgence, right from the adrenalin pumping physical fervor to mental excitement of theatrical emotions. It’s pretty evident that over the course of our civilization, sport has enjoyed maximum innovation with countless number of games created that range from the mundane, boring, exciting, enthralling to downright seemingly impossible and disastrous play.

The following article intends to capture the last category of aforementioned sports in function. As much as they hold promise of an exciting seat-edge thriller, they border on insanity. They certainly aren’t for the faint-hearted. Watching them makes one to pause and wonder if sometimes our obsession for sport comes at the expense of putting our life at stake. Of course it can be argued that every sport we come across has a potential risk therein, but these form an exclusive league that appear to be scripted to intentionally humor death and danger!

At Number five – Water Polo

While Swimming itself has a reputation for the amount of calories burnt, here’s an off-shoot that just heightens the discomfort. Water polo solicits the simultaneous combination of physical endurance of swimming and the mental agility and co-ordination of conventional polo. Even as the player is wriggling across the waters, he ought to be aware of the placements of his moving team, co-ordinate a game-plan and execute some timely goals. Unlike the other team sports, here the position momentarily not involved in play gets no rest, with swimming required continuously to stay up in the water. It might not exactly sound like the most daunting game, but be forewarned that this is just the mild beginning to an ascending weirdness!

A tie-up with Chess boxing

A curious case combining the beastly energy of boxing interspersed with an intellectual game of chess in between each round. That way they assume, man has combined the ultimate test of brain and the brawn. Strange but true!

At a nose length ahead is No.4 Dirt-Biking

It might not appear too perilous till you watch an accident in this sport, which by the way is a certainty. Some events in life grab our attention through repulsive seduction, where you watch with repugnance, yet continue to watch because it is a spectacle nevertheless. Here’s a sport that uses that backdrop to an advantage most fittingly. There are a host of racing bikers sprawling the mud circuit to race off to the finish line, overcoming obstacles of momentary flight in the air, uncertain descents into slippery sloping sand, a skidding track and potential mid-air collisions. With some people, life is as they declare, ‘to be lived in the fast lane with high octane adventure every second.’

The third place goes to Sepak Takraw

Seldom is one fascinated by watching blinding reflexes as with volleyball. Now combine that agility with the stupefying skills displayed by nimble feet of soccer legends, and you have game called Sepak Takraw. It’s volleyball played with the head, chest and legs with the hand used only to toss the ball during serve. The player has to toss himself around and do gymnastics every other second. Every single moment, life is a peril on the court, as you have to combine instantaneous reflexes, slick body artistry and body flips while hitting the ball simultaneously. One does not have to look beyond the Chinese martial arts’ movies to make a guess for the inspiration for such air-games, for rightfully, this is a weightless duel indulged in by the Thai’s and Malay’s.

For a small peek into the game:

Penultimate; No. 2 – Bull-Riding!

There are times when even Bolt’s 9.5 seconds seem like an eternity. In this sport, ‘8 seconds’ is all that is demanded for glory upon the podium, which I believe happens once in a blue moon. But this is one real test of endurance, where every participant can have a valid claim to brag of an attempt to snatch victory from the jaws of death. This is a sport with minimal rules, in fact just one – attempt to remain on the insane and angry dancing bull for 8 seconds!

The worst part is that besides inevitable failure, there’s a good chance of a life-altering disaster. It’s strange, isn’t it, that we loathe the Romans’ inhuman amphitheaters, while in truth console ourselves that we are less heartless in replacing the lions with bulls. At the end of the day, there is none complaining given that we have a seat-edge thrilling spectacle and a large purse to be gained on betting a charlatan’s life.

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The Leader; No.1 – Running of the Bulls

Some games enjoy the status of a nation’s tradition, even if they involve directly being chased by death. Roland Garros has a reputation for stern marathons, testing endurance, where Rafael Nadal elicits vociferous gasps. But right in its neighborhood is Spain’s traditional sport, that could reduce this deafening applause to a whisper amid the sounds of the beating hearts and the Spanish bull’s hooves hitting the stone. Even as the gladiators battle life being chased with mad bulls in the city’s squares, there’s an unmistakable excitement among the onlookers.

In my opinion, there’s no sport that captures the real spirit of sport like this one, where the only competition is with one’s own self. It might seem apparently mindless, but the pure thrill of even watching a human’s unshakable bravery is infinitely appetizing, what with being a participant on the track to immortality or death. Quite fittingly, it’s an adventurous sport that has no equal!

Stay tuned, for more stories of awe….

Published 19 Oct 2012, 14:06 IST
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