Here are six fun sports you might not know are in the Summer Olympics.
This Olympic sport is a lot like soccer, only you use your hands instead of your feet. Handball pits two teams of seven players against each other in an effort to get the ball into the other team’s goal. It’s also one of the most high-scoring team sports — it’s not uncommon for both teams to score more than 20 times.
Table tennis has been in the Summer Olympic Games since 1988. It’s the perfect combo of hand-eye coordination, agility, strategy and flexibility. Plus, those Olympic-level volleys can be as thrilling as anything you’ll see in more traditional sports.
Olympic racewalkers can move nearly as fast as runners. What’s the difference? Two rules: One foot must be in contact with the ground at all times, and your front leg must stay completely straight from the moment it touches the ground until your center of gravity passes over it.
Think bouncing on a trampoline doesn’t seem Olympics worthy? Then you’ve never seen these athletes do it. They leap nearly 30 feet in the air, spinning, flipping and twisting their way through jaw-dropping acrobatic movements.
BMX racing has been a part of the Summer Olympics since 2008. In the Olympic event, eight riders race simultaneously over an obstacle course filled with twisty turns and epic jumps.
This event takes traditional kayaking and canoeing to the extreme. Athletes must complete a 250-meter whitewater course, passing through a series of designated gates while navigating roaring rapids and other obstacles. It’s like the Summer Olympics version of the bobsled: fast, furious and tons of fun to watch.
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