New “Sports”

Ken AshfordPopular Culture1 Comment

Competitive Eating is not a sport.  It may be a competition, but let’s not call it a "sport".  These people are not athletes.  They’re gluttons.  I don’t care if they win prizes; I don’t care if they "train" and have "coaches".  It’s a freak show, and a way to enter the Guinness Book of World Records.  That’s all; nothing more.

Chessboxing1Chessboxing may not be a sport either (not entirely, anyway) but unlike competitive eating, I think it is pretty intriguing:

The basic idea in chessboxing is to combine the no.1 thinking sport and the no.1 fighting sport into a hybrid that demands the most of its competitors – both mentally and physically.

In a chessboxing fight two opponents play alternating rounds of chess and boxing. The contest starts with a round of chess, followed by a boxing round, followed by another round of chess and so on. In every round of chess the FIDE rules for a ´Blitz game´ apply, in every boxing round the AIBA rules apply with the following extensions and modifications: In a contest there shall be 11 rounds, 6 rounds of chess, 5 rounds of boxing. A round of chess takes 4 minutes. Each competitor has 12 minutes on the chess timer. As soon as the time runs out the game is over.

A round of boxing takes 2 minutes. Between rounds there is a 1 minute pause, during which competitors change their gear. The contest is decided by: checkmate (chess round), exceeding the time limit (chess round), retirement of an opponent (chess or boxing round), KO (boxing round), or referee decision (boxing round). If the chess game ends in a stalement, the opponent with the higher score in boxing wins. If there is an equal score, the opponent with the black pieces wins.

Sign me up.