Free Image Courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net/By duron123
Like hairstyles and clothing, some sports experience periods of trendiness, fuelled by our changing curiosities and interests. Gone are the days of stock-standard, gender-specific sporting pursuits; instead, each year brings a new range of undiscovered and unheard of sports to the table. Here are 5 of the sports that will take 2014 by storm.
Skateboarding is a timeless sport – whether the goal is grinding in some of the world’s biggest parks, or simply cruising from A to B. The boards themselves have evolved from wood planks atop clay wheels to state-of-the-art designs, fuelled by innovative companies like Z-Flex Online who design boards for the smoothest ride. Skateboarding is no longer seen as simply a mode of transport used by youths – celebrities like Tony Hawk and snowboarder Shaun White have actively pushed for skateboarding to be included in the next Olympic Games. With strong support for the cause, don’t be surprised if you see skateboarding on the bill for the next summer Olympics.
2. Figure Skating
The 2014 Winter Olympics have reminded the world how ahem cool winter sports can be. None of which are more glamorous and controversial than the mayhem of figure skating. The glitter, the backstabbing, the rivalries – figure skating is not only one of the most interesting sports to watch, but one of the most saucy behind the scenes. The drama behind Sochi 2014’s gold medal upset has drawn the attention back to this incredible sport, which requires finesse and flexibility to an extreme level.
This sport has made its way from the pages of Harry Potter to the grass-fields of universities worldwide. All the roles from the J.K Rowling-penned game are there; players chase after quaffles and dodge bludgers, all while running around with a broomstick between their legs. ‘Muggle Quidditch’ is played in Australia, America, Europe and more – and there’s even an inaugural Quidditch World Cup which attracts thousands of spectators from across the globe.
4. Underwater Base Jumping
This definitely isn’t one for the faint of heart. The emergence of a viral video featuring Guillaume Nery calmly jumping into an underwater abyss has inspired and terrified a legion of thrill seekers. Armed with only a pair of snorkel goggles (and presumably some weights), the sport involves calmly throwing yourself down a deep underwater sinkhole, not unlike base jumping off a cliff. This certainly would require a great deal of breathing training and is not for the erratic or claustrophobic.
Another Winter Olympics favourite, bobsledding came in at number two on the most-watched list in the 2014 Sochi Olympics. Once made popular by some overenthusiastic Jamaicans, bobsledding is rising to prominence once again due to the sheer rush of adrenaline that comes with watching it. As the four bobsledders plummet down an extremely narrow chute of ice, screaming their way around tight corners, the knowledge that one false move can cause the sled to spiral out of control lingers at the back of our fascinated minds.
There really is something for everyone in the sporting world, whether preferences are bats, balls or blinding sequins, land, water or ice. As the times change, so do popular sports; what do you think will be big this year?