By Dina Ginzburg
The London Olympics have sparked more than just British fever. They’ve also inspired a whole new genre of competition: the World Alternative Games. Held in Wales, the games are a series of competitions in events that many people have probably never heard of.
The biggest event to cause a stir? Snail racing. In this sport, “slow and steady wins the race” takes on a whole new meaning, as we can’t imagine any of the competitors were particularly speedy! Other events include bog snorkeling, egg roulette, backwards racing, hay bale throwing, pea shooting and many more zany sports.
Our personal favourite is worm charming, an event set to happen today. Surprisingly, worm charming competitions have been around since 1980 and consist of people digging garden forks into plots of land and hitting them with wooden or metal sticks to produce vibrations that lure the worms out of the soil. Competitors have 30 minutes to catch as many worms as they can. Sophie Smith, a 10-year-old girl from England, holds the world record in this event, having caught 567 creepy crawlies back in 2009.
This is the first year that the World Alternative Games have been held. With these wacky events now set to happen every two years, it will be interesting to see if they gain any mainstream popularity.