Sword to Shot Put: 10 Olympic Sports You've Never Thought About

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Sword to Shot Put: 10 Olympic Sports You've Never Thought About

Ever wonder how much a javelin weighs or where the pole vault came from? Olympics events feature some pretty odd sports equipment. Here's a run-down of the Game's most intriguing competitions.
Ever had that nagging feeling when you're watching Olympic throwing events? It's that little ego-nudge that makes us turn to our buddy at the sports bar and say something like, "Dude, if I had spent my life throwing a javelin, I could have been an Olympic javeliner…or whatever they're called." It's the same thing we say about NFL punters. We accept that we can't compete in some sports. We’re not tall enough (think basketball or volleyball) or fast enough (think sprinting or swimming). No thanks to your gene pool, you readily admit your height or quick twitch muscles don't cut it.

But when us ex-college or ex-high school athletes watch technique-based Olympic events seemingly mastered by time and practice (think fencing or hammer throw), part of us wonders, "If I had worked on throwing a hammer when I was 12, instead of hitting a curveball, would I have made it to Team USA?”

Chances are, probably not. But out of curiosity, Men’s Fitness scoped out the swords, hurdles, hammers, and other objects featured in the Olympics. We rounded up their world-approved specs on length, weight, or height. So if you still haven’t given up on the Olympic dream, at least you’ll know what you’re up against as you vie towards Rio de Janeiro’s 2016 Games.


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