Five obscure extreme sports we need on our TVs right now 5 years ago

Five obscure extreme sports we need on our TVs right now

Now that UFC is so mainstream even your nan watches it, you're going to need a new niche-interest bloodsport.

Maybe it was Conor McGregor, maybe it was phenomenal success of the Joe Rogan podcasts. Whatever the reason, UFC has now firmly cemented itself as a staple of popular sporting culture.

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When half of Hollywood hit Vegas to attend UFC 196 and it's not even a title fight, you know the sport has reached peak cool. If you're the type of person who enjoys edgier, lesser-known sports but still want to watch people beat each other black and blue – we've got you covered.

Boy have we got some gnarly games for you...

Pugil Sticks

US Marines use Pugil stick training to simulate the practice of repetitively smacking an enemy in the face with the butt of a rifle. Praised for the discipline it takes to master and its sheer high-octane energy its difficult  to see how this sport hasn't caught on quicker. Think Gladiators, but on steroids.

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Calcio Fiorentino

The ancient sport of Calcio Fiorentino - also known as Gladiator Football or Calcio Storico - dates back to as early as 1490 when it was allegedly played by Italian aristocrats.

It's brutal mix of cage-fighting and football, with 27 players on either side - what more could you want? Much like quiddich, there are only four legit teams. So chose well.

(Via David Ramos / Getty)

(Via David Ramos / Getty)

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Archery Tag

Hunting animals is increasingly frowned upon these days. But nobody ever said that two consenting adults don't have the right to hunt each other down with soft padded arrows.

Archery tag, a brutally fast-paced mixture of traditional archery and paintball, is the perfect group activity for letting off steam. Agility required.

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Basque Pelota

Born in Spain's Basque region during the 1700s, this unique, adrenalin-charged sport is a longstanding cultural custom.

Insane ball speeds combined with a special racket (or Palas) makes this a potentially lethal sport when played properly. It probably needs a rebrand though for TV marketing. We suggest 'Death Tennis'.

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Lawn Mower Racing

This one does exactly what it says on the tin. At first it's tempting to dismiss this one. 'Surely it cant 't be better than formula one', we hear you ask.

But Lawn-mower racing is both more entertaining and more deadly than F1 racing simply because there are less regulations and more DIY nutters trying to be a champ.

And yes, there's a British league.

(Via Jonathan Ferrey / Getty)

(Via Jonathan Ferrey / Getty

(Via Jonathan Ferrey / Getty

Special mentions go to Team UFC fighting, Uphill swimming, Bike polo and, of course, cheese rolling.