Justin_Case wrote:As I'm sure most of you know, ESPN has been comparing sports and athletes. ESPN just came out with their highly scientific (seriously it was) study using sports scientists, athletes, Journalists etc.
Boxing was rated the most difficult sport based on the categories of: ENDURANCE; STRENGTH; POWER; SPEED; AGILITY: FLEXIBILITY; NERVE; DURABILITY; HAND-EYE COORDINATION: ANALYTIC APTITUDE:
Overall I agree with most of the list, Basketball may be a little high.
Boxing (2 guys beating the crap outta each other)
Martial Arts (2 Korean guys beating the crap outta each other)
Rodeo (Happy Trails to youuuu....)
Auto Racing (Don't even start Bubba...)
Skateboarding (Hey dude...gotta another dubbie?)
Canoeing (Can you reach the beer?)
Cheerleading (Biggest boobs always win)
Roller Skating (wait...I DO remember that Raquel Welch roller derby flick)
Fishing (too ridiculous to even think of something here...)
"Ninety feet between bases is the closest man has ever come to perfection"
bolkonsky wrote:I would be willing to wager that those of you who disagree with hockey can not skate from blue line to blue line. Hockey is an easy number 2 and is probably #1 by any reasonable measure...to even participate in the game requires mastery of one of, if not the most, difficult skill in all of sports.
Damn right!! Anybody doubting hockey probably has never played and can't even skate. Or if they have played they haven't played at a competitive level. In my opinion Baseball is WAY too high on this list. A player can go a whole game without even running. Thats an athletic sport? No. 9? No way, I think too much went to the prodominantly north american sports here. Soccer and Rugby should be higher.
And as for baseball players having nerve for jumping into the batters box and facing a pitcher who can throw 90 something miles per hour, how many times a year do they actually get hit? Not many. They have 60 some odd feet to get out of the way. Hockey players jump in front of pucks going 100 mph and get hit in one game probably the same amount of times a ball player does in a season. Not to mention the players that come crashing into them or the sticks that are used as weapons sometimes.
baseball probably has the single most difficult ELEMENT to it IMO.
BUt, I have wrestled interscholastically, boxed in PAL leagues and played travel soccer, not to mention hoops and hockey in rec leagues.
Hockey, soccer and the combat sports almost definitely require the most endurance in the sense we are talking about. NASCAR definitely has an edurance level to it as well. There are no heat plates making the car ridiculously hot, and you don't have power steering, not to mention the shakes of the car. you inhale fumes and cannot let yourself be distracted for a second, or you could DIE. Not jsut get scored on or kicked in the nuts, but DIE. you need great hand eye coordination to shift into turns etc. nascar or any other auto racing is no joke. ESPN the mag did big spread about 6 issues ago on all that really goes into it, and I was amazed.
As far as wrestling and boxing go, one thing about endurance is that you can't hide within the team like you can with the ball sports.
I remember I was damn in shape in my high school wrestling days, jogging 5 miles a day before school, practice, more running at night. and the fact is, the minute the whistle blew, Iw as winded, its just you and your opponent, both going full tilt. In soccer or hockey (maybe not so much in hockey) hoops etc, you can take a play off if it isn't happening on your end of the field.
Also you have folks chocking you, cutting off your diamphram and punching you in the gut to take your wind away in wrestling and boxing.
Both take a serious amoutn of skill, much like I view baseball. In all three (and nascar IMO) you can't rely on natural gifts, you need the skill set too. Baseball, wrestling, nascar, boxing require the series of moves frequired to be so ingraned you don't have to think about it, becasue it can happen so fast. I know hoops, soccer, hockey all ahve serious elements of it, but in the ones listed, you don't have a chance to catch yourself and recover, you are either pinned, knocked out, crashed or popped out. I respect those four (and golf) the most in terms of skills. Obviosuly golf can't make the cut, because it is almost all skill and none of the other things.
I think at the end of the day, top tier boxing is the hardest. They say the reason the heavy weight division is so bad now is because they all play tight end and power forward in the NFL and NBA now. I know it is a joke, but it has some merit. The effort ain't worth it if you can get it easier than elsewhere.
At the end of the day boxing and nascar offer another element that the other sports don't have to the same degree, death, brain damage, etc.
rugby and football, hockey have it, but it isn't part of the overall purpose of the sport.
I also think amrathon runners hould be high on this list, and maybe tennis players. they are wimps in the "badass" sense, but it is like combinging the endurance of soccer witht he skills of a baseball player.
rugby is ahrd, but those who favor it over the american game do the american game a disservice. The play is MUCH more complex, and the players are much bigger. I don't think people realize how fast a lineman -- and that is just the lineman, not the safeties or the lineabckers can really run. force equal mass times acceleration. the men who play in the nfl are freaks of nature and chemicals. Rugby is clearly played continuously and with no pads, defintiely hard core. football is palyed with explosvie starts and stops with much bigger players. I think that element comes out in the wash. Also with football players, a lot of times you are planted while rugby is fluid. Being planted (in the case of quarterbacks, results in really being planted. I would rather redistribute some energy than jsut absorb it.
we eqaute gymnastics with being wimpy, but you gotta be very very strong. not to mention agile to pull those moves. I am sure everyone has seen highlights of the face plant into the pommel horse, and a flip that went awry....
this is an interesting conversation.
I would agree with the maritial arts post if martial arts fights lasted for as long as boxing matches. 24 minutes of fighting with 30 second breaks every two minutes is tough. Id on't really think anyone on the planet, martial artists or otherwise wanted any parts of a fight with tyson in the ring, and now, even if I was spotted 100 pounds don't think i would want any parts of roy jones jr, even in a controlled atmosphere.
It hink ti si the most basic, primal and rough sport there is, other than if there was a spot called "go intot he ring and fight the other guy, no holds barred" I guess then ultimate fihgting would be the overall toughest.
The weird thing is, in terms of injuries, the msot dangerous high school "sport" is competitive cheerleading.