Tandem Bicycle Sprint
You may think this is ridiculous, but this was actually a pretty long-lived Olympic event, running from 1908 to 1972. 1972!!! Teams of two men raced 2,000 meters. Although the event was removed from the Olympic Games, it’s still an event in the Paralympics.
You gotta watch this video. Glima is the “Icelandic sport of national folk wrestling” and it was in the Olympics until 1912. Both competitors have to stand straight up and they have to circle clockwise around each other. They both have to try to get their opponent’s body, somewhere between the elbow and the knee, to touch the ground.
It’s truly a sight to behold.
Not that kind of motorboating. Get your mind out of the gutter!
This was powerboat racing. 1908 was the only year it was an Olympic event — they decided that motorized sports weren’t exactly in the Olympic spirit.
Yes, for real. For a good portion of the 20th century, poetry was an official Olympic event. Like, you could win a medal for your poem. The guy who revived the Olympics, Baron Pierre de Coubertin, really wanted “Greek-style arts contests” to live next to the athletic events of the Olympics.
Medals were awarded for sports-themed poems. In fact, poetry wasn’t the only art involved in the Olympics.
At one point in time, you could also win medals for architecture, literature, music, painting, and sculpture. These events were first included in the 1912 Summer Olympics in Stockholm, Sweden and were part of the Games until 1952.
Now, there are still art exhibitions associated with the Games, but they are no longer official events. Too bad!