Wednesday, June 11, 2014

CrossFit, parkour, competitive climbing – sports of the future

In the 1989 movie “Say Anything,” the character played by John Cusack pronounced that kickboxing was the “sport of the future.”
Kickboxing never took off, but it did contribute to the rise of mixed martial arts and the popularity of Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Many sports have come and gone over the years. If they didn’t, we’d still have Roman gladiator tournaments and play Mayan soccer with human heads.
More recently, sports like boxing and bowling used to be much more popular than they are now.
Times change and our favorite sports change too.
I’ve spotlighted a lot of interesting sports over the last week or so. But none of them I would be willing to bet is the “sport of the future.”
If I had to pick the next big sport, I’d say CrossFit, competitive climbing, or something parkour-related.

CrossFit Games

The CrossFit Games are billed as “the world’s premier test to find the Fittest on Earth.” The games put athletes through a grueling series of ever-changing, unpredictable workouts.
The competition picks the “world’s fittest” man and woman ever year.
Interest in the sport has been growing rapidly since its inception in 2007. Sportswear company Reebok signed a 10-year sponsorship deal with CrossFit in 2010, according to the Financial Times.
The 2014 Reebok CrossFit Games will be held July 25-27 at the StubHub Center in Carson, Calif.
The men and women who participate in CrossFit are amazing physical specimens. See photos of CrossFit star Julie Foucher above. (See more photos of Foucher on Girls With Muscle.)


Another sport known for its unpredictability and the overall fitness of its athletes is parkour or free running. The sport involves running, jumping and climbing over obstacles in an urban environment.
There have been big parkour events held in Europe, but none seem to have caught hold with the public and sponsors.
In the U.S., the closest thing to a major parkour competition is American Ninja Warrior, a sports entertainment contest that airs on NBC.
Now in its sixth season, “American Ninja Warrior” is pulling in solid ratings, Entertainment Weekly reports.

Sport climbing

Another sport with the potential to become a big deal is sport climbing.
The International Federation of Sport Climbing is the body that regulates, directs and promotes climbing competitions on a worldwide basis.
Sport climbing is recognized by the International Olympic Committee, but is not yet a medal sport in the Summer Games. It was considered for the 2020 games, but did not make the short list. Maybe next time.

Photos from IFSC media center.

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