Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Unusual sports popularize in other countries


Everyone has heard of the basic sports: football, soccer, basketball and baseball. There are other sports–such as ping-pong or ultimate frisbee–that, while not as popular, are still well-known.

But what about the really weird sports? There are hundreds of sports out there that the average person has probably never heard of.

Wrestling is known as the sports in which two individuals grapple with each other and try to pin the other to the ground, but what if wrestling was taken to the next level?

Enter oil wrestling! Oil wrestling originated in Turkey and is the country’s national sport.

Each player wears a pair of black hand-stitched lederhosen-like pants called a kispet and covers themself from  head-to-toe in a mixture of olive oil and water.

When the round starts, the goal of each wrestler is to pin their opponent to the ground and get a strong hold on the his or her kipset.

The winner of the round is the one whose “umbilicus is not exposed to heaven.” It sounds weird, but it’s true. Every year, approximately 1,000 people compete in the Oil Wrestling tournament in Turkey, and while it originated in Turkey, the sport is played around the world.

Everybody, including myself, loves sleeping in their own bed, but I’m not sure if many individuals would use it to compete in a sport.

The sport of bed racing was started in 1965 in the North Yorkshire, England town of Knaresborough.

Each team consists of six members; five runners and one who sits on the bed.

The bed must be decorated, equipped with four wheels and have the ability to float. Each team runs with the bed for 1.9 miles up a hill and then down that hill towards the Nidd River. They must then swim 20 yards across the river. The first team to finish wins.

After the race, a bed racing parade–led by the winners–is held on the medieval streets of Knaresborough. Awards are also given out for the best-dressed bed and the most entertaining team during the parade.

Ironing seems like a mundane and ordinary task, but what if there was a way to make it riskier?

Extreme ironers does just that. Extreme ironing was started in the English city of Leicester in the summer of 1997 and is now played around the world. All you need to play is an iron, a board, some clothes and your imagination!

Some extreme ironers iron in places as safe as their backyard, but others iron in places as crazy as a mountainside or on a jet ski.

The beauty of this sport is that you get to experience an adrenaline rush from being someplace risky while getting your housework done at the same time.

“One, two, three, four, I declare a toe war!” Yes, you read that right: toe war. Toe wrestling was started in 1974 at a bar in Wetton, Staffordshire, England. It has become so popular that people have asked for it to be included in the Olympic Games. Before the match, each player’s toes are thoroughly inspected by a registered nurse to make sure they are clean and free of infections.

Then, each player removes their shoes and socks and tries to pin their opponent’s foot to their respective sides of the ring. There are three rounds, and players alternate feet each round.

The player who wins two out of the three rounds is the champion. So if a traditional sport is not your thing, try an odd sport. You may just find a new obsession.


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