Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Sport Stacking: Pretty Cool, but it's not a Sport

Have you seen the videos of people stacking and unstacking cups?

I don't know that I would call it a "sport" per se, but it is pretty cool to watch.

Pick an activity, any activity, and add speed or style or difficulty to it, and you can make it a competitive event. (However, that does not make it a sport.)

There are world air guitar championships, world texting championships, and even hitting a ball with a stick and then walking after it. None of them are sports though!

I also cast doubt on whether you can call darts, bowling, and auto racing a sport. They are activities, games, and even competitions. To me, a sport is something that makes you sweat when you do it (and with all due respect to my NASCAR-loving friends, wearing a flameproof suit in 90 degree weather doesn't count). But that's another matter entirely, and not one to be taken personally, like a friend from Ireland who got really upset when I told him darts wasn't a sport.

But sport or not, sport stacking looks really cool. You have to stack cups in certain orders and formations, as quickly as possible. Personally, I'm waiting for the Nintendo Wii version.

But New Zealand schools are going a little nuts for sport stacking. According to a story in New Zealand's Stuff newspaper, kids at the Whakarongo School are using sport stacking to improve their hand-eye coordination, getting a little exercise, trying to break a Guinness World Record, and even impressing the girls in class. There is even a team of kids who are practicing to go to the World Cup Stacking Championships in Denver in 2009.

Good luck, Stack-arongo!

Addendum: After reading MzHartz's and Doug Karr's comments below, I have to reassess my statement about car racing not being a sport. I didn't actually realize there was that much physical demand on race car drivers. Plus there's the whole risk of death thing. So, let me apologize to all the NASCAR and open-wheel racing fans out there. Your sport is truly a sport.

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  1. Only activities with a risk of death or serious injury should be classified as sport. Marathon (heart attack) eq sport. High dive (splat) eq sport. Baseball (curve ball to temple) eq sport. Stacking cups (plastic cut) not eq sport. Soccer (faking injury after slide tackle) not eq sport.

  2. You should have seen me when I played college soccer. I was a big guy, and we played European style soccer (read: violent with a risk of death). Not like the Latin American style with all their fancy-schmancy passes and cool shoes and their makeout parties!

    No, we were nasty. I loved colliding with the forwards (I was like a linebacker for soccer), and our goalie once broke a guy's leg. The next year, one of our forwards broke his leg.

    Now THAT'S a sport!

  3. I'm not one of those NASCAR fanatics, but I have to disagree and say that racing is a sport. I've heard doctors equate it to marathon running with the toll it takes on the body.

    Now, with the whole risk of serious injury factor, I'd have to make darts a sport. At least, if you're playing with me.

  4. Well, after Michelle and Doug's comments, I have reassessed my whole attitude about car racing being a sport. Because of the physical demands on the driver, plus the risk of death, I think car racing is a sport.

    Plus I have a few friends who are car racing nuts who might have something to say about that. (I'm not kidding. They're really and truly nuts, and I'm a little afraid of them.)

  5. Love debating this topic with my boyfriend! He argues that skateboarding IS a sport...what do you guys think? He claims that the determining factor is whether or not it is competitive...well shoot...if that's the case, better make room for 'hot dog eating' as a sport too...I've seen competitions..AND Doug...there's ALL kinds of risk involved =)

    Andrea Vadas, Realtor
    Search the Indianapolis MLS for FREE!

  6. Its certainly 'interesting' to watch. Wouldn't consider it a sport. Yet there is a world record for it. :)
    Indianapolis dj

  7. That cup stacking stuff is pretty wild. It takes some serious hand speed. http://pick-a-part-indianapolis.com


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