By Matthew Brooks
How far can you throw your phone? Could you carry your wife in a race for the length of nearly three football fields? There is a sport for you. In Finland.
The cold northern European country only enjoys non-winter-like weather for four months a year. The short season means Finns must make the most of it with unconventional sports.
The sport of wife-carrying has a rich tradition with an official championship dating back to 1992.
Some of the rules of the game are thus:
- The track is 253.5 meters, or 277.2 yards.
- The track contains two dry obstacles and one wet obstacle with a depth of 1 meter / 3.2 feet.
- The wife, who doesn’t need to be your actual wife, must weigh 49 kg / 108 lbs. If she doesn’t weigh 49 kg, weights are added to reach the requirement.
The Wife Carrying Championships of North America takes place in Maine on Columbus Day.
This history of this sport has been dominated by Finland and Estonia. The 2018 champion, however, is from Lithuania.
The sport of phone-throwing is more recent, officially begun in 2000. This makes sense because cell phones are relatively recent. It also makes sense that the birthplace of the iconic, nearly unbreakable Nokia phone is the home of a phone-throwing sport.
The origin of the sport comes from concerns over phone recycling. Toxic cell phone batteries are harmful to the environment.
Any phone will do for this sport as long as it’s nearly half-a-pound / 220 grams.
Mobile Phone Throwing World Championships supplies the phones.
The current world record holder is Tom Philipp Reinhardt from Germany with a phone throw of 136.75 meters / 448.6 ft.
The Annual Air Guitar World Championship Contest dates back to the 1980s.
The contestants do exactly what it sounds like: they mime on a invisible guitar to a chosen song.
Contestants are judged on technical aspects of the performance, including “airness” and stage presence.
The contest awards bronze, silver, and gold medals. Unlike, the other sports on this list, America makes a strong showing in the air guitar competition. An American has medaled every year for the past decade.
Five-time medalist Matt “Airistotle” Burns took silver in the 2018 championship. The gold medal holder is currently Nanami “Seven Seas” Nagura of Japan.
The hobby horse is a horse head on a stick. It isn’t a scene from The Godfather. It’s a sport that held its annual championship in Finland this June.
Unlike the other sports, the hobby head competition is filled mostly by people aged 10 to 18. It is not, according to competitor teenager Aquata Kirveskari, just “childish playing around,” according to the AP.
A highlight of the event is the high jump where contestants must leap over a four-foot, seven-inch bar.