Thursday, November 12, 2009

Fringe sports update: Free running, beer pong

As I’ve previously written, I have a fascination with what I call “fringe sports.”
These are organized, competitive activities that are seeking to gain a wider audience. They want to break through to the mainstream, get media coverage and attract a large fan base. And perhaps one day they’ll be the next NFL or NBA. But more likely not.

Fringe sports flashback

Competitive aerobics is a good example of a sport that didn’t have legs.
Break Media recently posted a video from the 1987 Dance Aerobics Championship. Yeah, it’s pretty embarrassing.
Watch it here.

Every sport needs a video game about it

Competitive eating and beer pong have been subjects for video games. Now free running has joined their ranks.
Graffiti Entertainment, a subsidiary of Signature Devices, has just come out with “Free Running” for Nintendo’s Wii game console.
Free running, or le parkour as it is known in France where it originated in the late 1990s, is an extreme sport involving running, jumping and performing death-defying tricks in urban environments. Players climb walls, jump over cars, run along railings and do other stunts.

The road to the World Series … of Beer Pong

Beer pong masters are honing their skills ahead of the World Series of Beer Pong, set for Jan. 1-5 in Las Vegas., the official governing body of the beer pong sport, is holding satellite tournaments leading up to the drinking game’s biggest event. A event Nov. 21 in New York City will feature music from DJ WhooKid and others.
For videos showing the exciting sport of beer pong, check out One Stop Video.

Artwork for’s regional beer pong tournaments
Screen shot from Wii video game “Free Running”

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