The 33 Strangest Olympic Sports of All Time

Olympic Tug of War

We all love watching the big sports of the Olympics – the endless swimming, track and field, gymnastics, etc. But the best part of the Games is getting to see all of the bizarre sports that rarely get any attention. These sports can change pretty often, and it is so easy to forget they even existed in the Olympics at one point. But they did, and they can get pretty weird.

Here are just 33 of the strangest sports in Olympic history:

  • Midget Tossing (1950-1964)
    • Dwarf Tossing (1968 – 1976)
    • Little People Tossing? (1980)
    • Little People Airborne Assistance Exercise (1984)
    • Little People Lifting (1988)
    • Little People Handshaking – Please Don’t Lift Them (1992)
    • Little People Reparations Competition (1996)
    • Hammer Throw (2000 – present)
  • Competitive Snow Fort Building (1992)
  • Rhythmic Shake Weight Lifting (banned for sexually suggestive content)
  • Slam Poetry (100-word, 200-word and marathon)
  • Baby Luge (1998)
  • Kleenex Filling (2000-2008; developed during a period of the IOC introducing “branded sports” into the Games)
  • Mixed Doubles Adultery (demonstration sport only)
  • Improv Olympics (1980-2000)
  • The Macarena (introduced in 1996; abandoned after trend died halfway through the semifinals)
  • Information Superhighway Surfing (Introduced in the ’92 Barcelona Olympics but failed to really catch on at first; many thought it would just be a fad)
  • Olympic Medal Receiving (1976 – 1984; a variation on this event included the TV camera panning randomly around the audience and giving medals to whomever it was pointed at when the music stopped)
  • Hide the Homeless Relays (Atlanta, 1996)
  • Backwards Running (2012)
  • Penmanship (1960 – 2000)
  • Office Chair Sit ‘n’ Spin (1992)
  • Synchronized Haberdashery (1956)
  • Synchronized Sitting (later changed to a water event and renamed Rowing)
  • Freestyle Knitting (1956)
  • Martyring (35 AD – present)
  • Freestyle Racism (1936 – 1968)
  • iPhone Assembly (2008; children’s competition)
  • Coal Mining Relay (1948 – 1972)
  • Parents Watching Their Olympic Athlete Children (2008 – present)
  • Downhill Spiraling (2000 – present)
  • Sausage Stuffing (1968 – 1980)
  • Cigarette Eating (1904 – 1988)

 

 




The Robot Butt Staff

Author: The Robot Butt Staff

We're the Robot Butt staff, hired right after the experiment of typewriting monkeys went horribly wrong.

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