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Star Wars-Inspired Lightsaber Dueling Recognized as Competitive Sport in France

In an effort to get the younger generation off the couch and exercising, the French fencing federation recently recognized lightsaber dueling as a competitive sport.

Just like medieval tales like The Three Musketeers once inspired youths to take up classic fencing sports, so too can Star Wars save young people from the clutches of the evil currently plaguing public health – sedentary lifestyle. Or at least that’s how officials from the French fencing federation explain their decision to acknowledge lightsaber dueling as an official sport. They even included some specific rules designed to make battles between Jedi Knights and Sith Lords more visually appealing and get young people interested in taking up the sport.

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Irish Football Club Fakes Player’s Death to Get Game Called Off

An amateur football club in Ireland has recently come under fire for faking the death of one of its players in order to have a match postponed.

Ballybrack FC was due to play Arklow Town in Ireland’s Leinster Senior League last Saturday, but the match was called off after Ballybrack representatives announced that one of the club’s foreign players, Spaniard Fernando Nuno la Fuente, had died in a terrible car accident. The entire league was stunned by the news, minutes of silence were held before the beginning of all the other matches, players wore black armbands in memory of la Fuente, and some teams even expressed their condolences on social media. But the shock of the player’s death paled in comparison to the shock of later learning that he hadn’t actually died, but simply traveled back to Spain.

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Incredibly Tall 12-Year-Old Basketball Player Can Dunk Without Even Jumping

At just 12-years-old, Olivier Rioux already stands at 6-foot-11 (2.11 meters) which makes him one heck of an asset for his basketball team. Not only can he shoot the ball without any of his opponents even coming close to a block, but he can literally slam dunk on the 8-foot-tall basket without his feet leaving the ground.

As you can imagine, Olivier Rioux is pretty dominant on the basketball courts, thanks in part to his skill, but mostly to the fact that all of the other players’ heads only come up to his bellybutton. That’s a pretty good advantage to have, in any situation. He can shoot whenever he wants, he’s literally always open for passes and as long as he’s close enough to his opponents, he can block any of their passes or shots. To say this Canadian 12-year-old is head and shoulders above his competition would be a pretty fair assessment.

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Chinese Football Club Paints Stadium Gold for Good Luck

A top-tier Chinese football team recently painted their whole stadium from their traditional color, blue, to bright gold, in order to change their luck. It may sound stupid, but they don’t care, because it actually worked!

Last month, after a dismal run that saw their team win a single home game in four months, the Guangzhou R&F football club made the desperate decision to repaint the whole stadium and surrounding facility gold, to improve their feng shui. The decision sounds even crazier if you consider that they had just renovated the stadium last year, painting the whole thing blue, to match their club colors. But the team had only won a single match on home turf since March 12, and they had run out of people and things to blame for their results, so, in desperation, management decided to follow the teachings of feng shui. They chose gold, because it apparently symbolizes completeness and fulfillment.

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7-Year-old “Gentle Giant” Reportedly Weighs 100 Kg, Is Unstoppable on the Rugby Field

A 7-year-old Samoan rugby player who towers over most kids his age recently sparked controversy in the world of children’s sports, after a video showing him effortlessly tearing through the entire opposing rugby team during a league game went viral online.

Vaka Tuitupou may be only 7-years-old, but he already weighs around 100 kg and is one or two heads taller than most kids his age. He’s also a pretty good rugby player and considering his physical advantages, it’s no wonder that his team, the Sydney St John’s Eagles, only play him when they really need to. In a video that has been doing the rounds online for the last two weeks, the boy effortlessly goes through the entire opposing team to score a try, despite their efforts to stop him.

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Man Wins 23-Kilometer Race He Ran in His Socks

Ibrahim Mukunga Wachira, a 27-year-old marathon runner from Kenya, became an overnight sensation in the small Baltic country of Estonia, after winning the 35th annual Tartu Half-Marathon, a 23-kilometer race he ran in his socks.

Just last week, we wrote about the monumental achievement of María Lorena Ramírez, a native Rarámuri woman from Mexico, who won a 50-kilometer ultramarathon in rubber sandals made from used car tires and wearing a long traditional skirt. Today, we cover the amazing story of a man who not only won a 23-kilometer marathon in Estonia, but also set a new speed record, after running with no shoes on. It’s definitely an incredible time for sports, and running in particular.

 

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Mexican Woman Wearing Long Skirt and Rubber Sandals Wins 50 Km Ultramarathon

People usually train for years and invest in professional running gear just to be able to complete an ultramarathon, but María Lorena Ramírez, a native Rarámuri woman from Mexico who had not have any professional training or even basic gear, not only managed to finish a 50 km race, but actually win it. And she did it wearing a traditional long skirt and sandals made of recycled tire rubber.

High quality running shoes, compression socks, Lycra suits, energy drinks, all these are considered essential by most runners participating in an ultramarathon, but they were of no importance to 22-year-old María Lorena Ramírez, a sheep herder from Chihuahua, Mexico, who showed up at the starting line of a women’s ultramarathon in Puebla in traditional clothing and equipped with just a bottle of water and a handkerchief. She stood out like a sore thumb among the 500 or so other runners from 12 countries around the world, but she didn’t seem to care.

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Horsing Around Is a Competitive Sport in Finland

Imagine a sport much like equestrian show jumping, but where the horse is replaced by a wooden stick with a plush toy at one and the rider actually does all the jumping over increasingly difficult hurdles. That’s the popular sport of Competitive Hobbyhorsing in a nutshell.

The hobby horse is one of the oldest children’s toys still used today. Many of us remember prancing around in the yard on a stick imagining that it was a noble steed, but for the tens of thousands of members of the hobbyhorsing community in Finland, riding a toy horse is more than just a game. Many of them train for hours and hours on a daily basis and regularly take part in large-scale show jumping competitions where they try to impress judges with their posture, footwork and jumping.

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Step into the Adrenaline-Filled World of Competitive Swinging

For most of us, swinging 360 degrees around the spindle of a swing set is a distant childhood dream, but for a group of adrenaline seekers in Estonia, it’s a passion they never grew out of. Not only do they still love defying gravity, but they actually created a competitive sport around their favorite pastime. That sport is known as “kiiiking”.

Swings are deeply embedded in Estonian culture, and you can still find various types of swings in villages and towns all around the country. They are used by children and adults alike, either for simple fun, or as a way for communities to bond during celebrations. So maybe it doesn’t come as a big surprise that Estonia has an extreme sport based on swinging. Some people see it as dull, others as pointless, but to those who practice it, kiiking is the coolest thing in the world.

As you might remember, swinging around the spindle of some playground swings was possible, but at the same time dangerous. From simple bruises to broken bones and concussions, there were a lot of things that could go wrong during such an attempt, which is why in 1993, an Estonian man by the name of Ado Kosk created a pair of wooden swings designed specifically for going all the way around the spindle. They were rudimentary contraptions made up of simple levers with a pair of wooden rods attached to a flat seat on one end and the rotating spindle on the other. Nobody knew it at the time, but that was when kiiking was born.

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At 7-Foot-7, This 16-Year-Old Is the Second Tallest Basketball Player in the World and Taller Than Anyone in the NBA

Robert Bobroczky, a 7-foot-7, 16-year-old freshman at SPIRE Institute, a state-of-the-art international academy in Geneva, Ohio, is set to become the tallest player to ever play in the NBA and of the tallest in the history of the sport.

Bobroczky, a native of Romania, has been described as “so tall he doesn’t look real”. At age 12, he was already 7 feet tall, and although his growth rate has slowed down over the last four years, he is still on track to become the eighteenth person in medical history to reach or surpass eight feet in height. Unfortunately, his weight has been having trouble keeping up with his growth, and at 7-foot-7, he weighs only 190 pounds. Robert is honing is skills on the basketball court, but if he is to reach the NBA, the first priority is bulking up.

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Chubby Parkour Master Will Blow Your Mind with His Insane Skills

Sébastien Charron doesn’t look like your average parkour enthusiast. Instead of a lean muscular physique, he sports a prominent belly and obviously high body fat percentage, features not usually associated with a sport that requires impeccable physical conditioning. But as soon as you see him in action, you are reminded of the old saying “you should never judge a book by its covers.”

Dubbed a “real-life Kung Fu Panda”, Charron is actually an inspiration for average guys everywhere that nothing is impossible. He started practicing parkour a decade ago, and became really good at it, but after five years he was diagnosed with schizophrenia, and the side effects of his prescribed medication forced him to take a break from what he loved doing most. The treatment and lack of physical activity also caused him to gain massive weight in a relatively short period of time, but he never gave up on his passion. He recently started training again, and although he admits that the thick layer of fat makes working on his jumps and vaults tougher than before, he somehow manages to make it work.

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Introducing Dødsing – The Craziest Sport to Ever Come Out of Norway

When jumping off a diving board, a belly flop is not the outcome most people are looking for, but for those competing in the crazy Norwegian sport of Dødsing, hitting the water belly first is a risk that comes with the territory.

Dødsing, or “Death Diving”, is a Norwegian extreme sport that has daredevils jumping from a 10-meter-high board with their arms and legs spread out in an x-formation. The goal is to keep the pose for as long as possible and curl your body slightly right before hitting the water to prevent injuries. At the World Dødsing Championship, a wacky competition held every summer since 2008, the diver who manages to remain flat the longest during their jump is pronounced the winner.

But there are plenty of fearless dødsing divers at the world championship, so in order to determine the winner, judges also take into account other factors, such as the speed, height and power of the jump, the originality of the jumping style and the spray produced when hitting the water.

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Canadian Axe-Throwing Bar Proves Big Hit

Combining razor-sharp axes and alcohol sounds like a very bad idea, but it seems to be working for the Timber Lounge, a popular axe-throwing bar in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

The Timber Lounge offers patrons sick of urban sports like bowling, darts or pool a new way to unwind. Axe-throwing has long been a popular pastime among lumberjacks in Nova Scotia, and Darren Hudson, a fifth-generation sawmill operator from Shelburne County, decided to bring it to the masses. He partnered with fellow axe-throwing enthusiast Marc Chisholm and together they founded the city’s first axe-throwing lounge. Adrenalin junkies can get their fix by balancing sharp hatchets and double-edged axes over their heads before hurling them at painted wooden bullseyes. Between sessions, they can step into the lounge area to enjoy Nova Scotia food and craft beers.

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11-Year-Old Skips Rope 108 Times in 30 Seconds, Sets New World Record

11-year-old Cen Xiaolin can move his legs faster than most people can count. The boy recently set a new rope skipping world record by completing a whopping 108 skips in just 30 seconds!

That’s so fast that you can’t even see the rope. In fact, judges at the first World Inter-School Rope Skipping Championships, in Dubai, simply couldn’t keep up with him. They were unable to count Cen’s steps while he was skipping, as it was all a bit of a blur. They had to rewatch the footage in slow-motion eight times to verify the exact number of steps. Later, he broke another record by skipping 548 times in three minutes.

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Extreme Handskating – German Daredevil Skates with His Hands

As if rollerblading wasn’t difficult enough, this guy from Germany actually skates on his hands! Mirko Hanßen claims to have invented the sport of ‘handskating’ himself, and he’s currently the best (and only) hand skater in the world.

Mirko has always loved skating and handstands, and one day at dinner, he thought of combining the two, on a whim. He made his first attempt in his bedroom that night, putting his hands in his rollerblades and attempting a headstand. He hardly managed to prop himself up before he came crashing down on the floor.

But Hanßen would not give up. With more practice, he was able to stand on his hands and even glide forward. He soon took his sport outdoors to the streets, practicing on bike lanes but when motorists proved to distracting, he moved to more obscure locations, like back alleys, which also ensured no one could copy his unique sport. “I’ve always made sure that nobody is filming me with their smartphone,” he said. Eventually, he got pretty good at handskating and started posting videos of himself online. He’s able to do backflips, skate on ramps, and even skate on just one hand.

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