Swimming vs. running

Swimming has many different races – different in length and in styles of swimming. Where these styles of swimming come from, who knows? Well, Wikipedia does – The four competitive strokes are the butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, and freestyle. Running races are of different length, but not necessarily in style, though the way of running changes depending upon the distance run. The differences in ways of running are not as different as the differences in the ways of swimming.

This leads me to wonder why there are not running races of people running backwards. “That would be silly” you say. Well, what is the backstroke? Swimming backwards, looking where you have been not where you are going.

Comparing the World Records in the 4 styles in the 50 m race, we see that the 50 m freestyle is the fastest.
50 m freestyle 21.28
50 m backstroke 24.47 *
50 m breaststroke 27.18
50 m butterfly 22.96

So why do the other styles of swimming exist? Why are there not styles of running? How quickly could Usain Bolt run the 100 m backwards? Or sideways? Or one one leg? Or while turning in circles? I think the different styles of swimming should be abandoned and people swim however they want to as long as they stay in their lanes. Having different styles of stroke is silly. It should just be getting from A to B as quickly as possible (or A to B to A to B etc. if doing multiple laps) however possible without interfering with other swimmers.

This then leads me to the hurdles. What would the swimming equivalent be? Hoops underwater for the swimmers to go through?

Sport vs. Art

This is a list of all the Summer Olympic Sports

Archery, Athletics(or track and field), Badminton, Baseball, Basketball, Beach Volleyball, Boxing, Canoe/Kayak Flatwater,Canoe/Kayak Slalom, Cycling BMX, Cycling Mountain Bike, Cycling Road, Cycling Track, Diving, Equestrian, Fencing, Football, Gymnastics Artistic, Gymnastics Rhythmic, Trampoline, Handball, Hockey, Judo, Modern Pentathlon, Rowing, Sailing, Shooting, Softball, Swimming, Synchronized Swimming, Table, Tennis, Taekwondo, Tennis, Triathlon, Volleyball, Water Polo, Weightlifting, Wrestling

Some of these sports have judges, determining which participant did the event better, a subjective event one could say. Sports in my mind are not subjective. Well, they are subjective in that some people enjoy some sports and not other. Some people enjoy them not at all and are rather proud of that fact (like that mother on Mommy Swap or whatever it’s called. Man, was she a nut case.)

Sports are objective – who crosses the line first, who gets the ball from A to B more times, how much did this person lift. It’s not about how, but about what. I would remove – Synchronized Swimming, diving and all forms of gymnastics. This not to say that those events are not hard. They are quite hard. What those gymnasts can do is #$#@! amazing. But just because it is physical and hard does not make it a sport. I would say gymnastics and synchronized swimming are really physically challenging art forms.

Giving birth is really hard to do, why not make that a sport? Making a nice soufflé is really hard also. Why not have cooking in the Olympics? There could be a panel of judges who then taste the soufflé and give the cook points for style, presentation and taste. They could even have cook offs with special ingredients. Oh wait, that sounds like Iron Chef.

How about writing, poetry or otherwise in the Olympics?

People get 15 minutes to write something. Give them a topic and off they go. At the end, judges read it and give a grade, I mean a score. Points for difficulty of topic and points for execution.

Ridiculous, if you ask me if cooking or writing made it into the Olympics. Those are clearly not sports. But still hard to do. So is it amount of calories burned that are a requirement for an event to be considered a sport? I’m sure that training for diving takes a lot of calories, but each dive itself can’t burn many calories to do. So if it is caloric output, I vote for sumo squats.

So is it physical difficulty that makes an event a sport? Caloric output? What?