The following is a guest post from Rainier Fuclan for Road Rat Motors.
We all dream of being a professional sports star one day, then a lifetime of disappointment and wedgies from actual athletes makes us realize our strengths in more rewarding pursuits like Sudoku puzzles or snarky Internet articles. Even the laziest of amateur sports, like the World Beard and Mustache Competition or the Air Guitar Championship require years of dedication or a complete lack of self-respect to compete in. Luckily, there are plenty of other amateur sports out there that you can try and ultimately fail at.
Bossaball is an unholy mix of basketball, volleyball and the Brazilian martial art capoeira, with trampolines and an inflatable court thrown in for good measure. Developed in 2004 by some Spanish dudes who were way into Slamball and the Top Gun volleyball scene, bossaball has spread to a few countries but is largely played in Spain and Brazil.
How it works:
Playing on the (heavily patented) inflatable bossaball court, teams of 3-5 players are allowed 6 touches before a striker launches himself off the trampoline to strike the ball at the opposing team. Players can hit the ball with any part of their body, with one of the most popular finishing moves being the soccer-style bicycle kick. Due to the magic of trampolines, even the most ungainly of Lionel Messi-wannabes can experience the joy of kicking a ball over a net before landing horribly on their necks.
The Redneck Games
With the tagline, “More Fun Than Indoor Plumbing,” you just know you’re in for a good time. Held each May in East Dublin, Georgia, the Summer Redneck Games are a one-day competition to crown the king of rednecks. Eschewing traditional Olympic events like swimming and gymnastics, the Summer Redneck Games pit the South’s finest against each other in spectacles of strength, skill and art.
How it works:
Held as a southern-style Olympics, plucky rednecks compete in classic Greco-Roman events such as Watermelon Seed Spitting, Bobbin’ for Pig Feet, the Hubcap Hurl and Redneck Horseshoes (using toilet seats). Knowing that some are not cut out for the feats of strength, the Games thoughtfully include the Armpit Serenade competition. You know, for the ladies.
One of the more accessible amateur sports on this list, scooter racing is just like NASCAR for people who are scared of speeds greater than 30 miles per hour. Founding in 2010, the North American Scooter Racing Association, a group that I didn't just make up, has been slowly turning the heads of race fans at races throughout the nation. Open to anyone with a respectable moped or Vespa, NASRA members compete throughout the year. I have my eye on the Bintelli Scorch as my speed demon.
How it works:
For a lifetime membership of $100, NASRA members can compete in a slew of semi-exciting scooter races. The organization plans on expanding its current Drag Race series events to more traditional motocross-style events, but currently racers can pit their mopeds head to head in a no-holds-barred snails' race. In October, the group is holding the NASRA Drag Race Finals, so buckle up and attempt to contain yourself.
Another southern gem, noodling is the graceful art of catching giant catfish. Without using a line, hook, net or any fishing implement other than the two the Good Lord gave you at birth. A common county fair event throughout the South and Midwest, noodlers see if they can catch the largest catfish by sticking their arms into dank, underwater holes and letting a catfish clamp onto their bare hands. Because, why not?
How it works:
A would-be noodler will typically wade into murky canals, rivers and lakes looking for holes or ledges of brush that a catfish might hide in. Once they find it, the noodler dives to depths up to 20 feet and sticks a hand in the hole, waiting for a 40+ lb. fish to dart forward and bite his arm, allowing the noodler to grab the fish by the gills. Simple enough, although noodlers have been known to lose fingers or even drown when they get caught on stray roots or caves. However, all sorts of generally antagonistic animals tend to live in underwater holes, including alligators, water moccasins and snapping turtles — giving noodling a significant hurdle for the curious amateur.
Mud runs and obstacle course 5K runs have experienced significant growth of the last few years, allowing beautiful people around the nation to show how in shape they are and actually have fun working out. Insufferable as your Warrior Dash-finishing office mate might be, zombie run 5Ks are even weirder – especially when most people sign up (and pay) to be the zombies.
How it works:
Like a typical obstacle course run, runners have to complete a 5K full of rope swings, mud pits and walls — basically, every sweaty nerd's high school nightmare, but with zombies to take the edge off. Runners are given two flags and must avoid the zombies who will spring up along the course. Runners who successfully navigate the zombie horde get a medal, while the zombies get to eventually run a 5K after the winners finish all the beer at the finish line. Hardly seems fair.
Rainier Fuclan is a freelance writer for Road Rat Motors; they produce electric vehicles for sale nationwide and are located in Gainesville, FL.