From Niche Sports to Global Phenomenon: The Rise of Unconventional Events in the Olympics

The unusual Olympic sports are less popular than their big brothers, yet, they still have so much to offer, which is commendable.

The Olympics boast splendour and glory, housing some of history’s most significant sports events. They typically consist of numerous events or games that may fall into two categories: conventional and unconventional.

Conventionally celebrated sports need no introduction, but what about those that we don’t discuss and praise as much? Eventing, race walking and dressage are unconventional Olympic games that seldom get all the attention they deserve. Let’s take a look at the outrights for this year’s Olympics and some past games. 

Race Walking

The debut of the race walking sport was during the 1908 tournament. Although walking is a sport in the Olympics, no less competition has occurred, as is evident by the number of Olympic records set up in the 2012 London Olympics.


The sport of Trampolining is one of the artistic gymnastics gymnastics in the season of 2000. The trampoline event shown at the Olympic games is no less than any other track and field race in terms of competitiveness on display. The player receives a specified time duration, i.e., a defined amount of seconds to progress through different progression stages.

Trampolining is an acrobatic sport where the participant, i.e., trampolinists, performs a set of 10 routines, and the judges award the marks based on specific numbers. There were just preliminary competitions, squads, and Petit Finalists in the position. Canada has been utterly dominant in trampolining in the land of the Olympics. Canada is amongst the most superior in the history of the Olympics, boasting a collection of six medals.


Dubbed as the triathlon of horse and rider, eventing combines three distinct disciplines:

  • Dressage
  • Cross country
  • Show jumping

This multi-faceted event has been a part of the tournament since 1912. It showcases the incredible bond between horses and riders as they navigate various challenges across different terrains.

Eventing is also known as the Olympic triathlon of horse and rider. The sport uses one horse and the horse’s rider to cross all these different terrains. Eventing is different from other types of sports. It uses the horse and rider bond, dressage and taking unusual terrains unsuited for sports such as equestrian.

Rhythmic Gymnastics

The word Rhythmic gymnastics is a fascinating blend of athleticism and aesthetics. The ribbons might be what catches the mind when you think about rhythmic gymnastics, but it goes way beyond that. With the Ribbons in hand, with balls and clear hoops, the gymnasts could showcase their skills and thus get howls of applause for their grace and precision.

Since its introduction to the Olympics in 1984, Rhythmic Gymnastics has continued to advance with its abilities and athleticism.


Handball is a mix of basketball and football, a relatively new event at the Olympic games. Two teams of seven players each run, jump and throw a ball through a small football net. In this variant, the game is fast-paced, tactical, skilful and athletic.

Table Tennis

Table tennis was introduced as an Olympic event in 1998, and since then, it has been a thrilling and competitive sport globally. It’s played in singles and doubles, where athletes show their agility, reflexes and strategic minds. Yet, since its introduction, the game of tables has one unbroken rule: ‘China wins.’ China’s table tennis team has practically been unbeatable since 1998, as it has won 24 out of 28 gold medals since its introduction as an Olympic event.

Unconventional Olympic Sporting Events

The unusual Olympic sports are less popular than their big brothers. Yet, they still have so much to offer, which is commendable. These sports can stand as a testament to the fact that the Olympics are trying to become more inclusive and Innovative. Don’t hesitate to give them a go yourself. You might find your next favourite spot to