The physical and mental demands of sports vary depending on which sport you’re playing. While it is expected for sportsmen to experience fatigue in their respective fields, not all of them undergo the same treatments. Some go for adrenal fatigue treatment in Salt Lake City or Brooklyn while others need to undergo longer and more serious physical therapies in Los Angeles or Denver.
The nature of sports is extremely physical which requires a higher level of dedication and commitment. This is where the rubber meets the road in most cases. Professionals are set apart because of their willingness to sacrifice blood, sweat, and tears for the advancement of their game. That being said, we have listed below some of the most physically demanding sports in the world today.
7 of the World’s Most Demanding Sports
Rugby union, or rugby, is an extremely tough contact team sport that started in England. Think American football without the helmet and the pads.
Athletes involved in this sport are some of the toughest competitors around. You have to be if you’re doing two 40-minute halves of nonstop running and hitting.
Gymnasts commit at least 40 hours a week for training and conditioning starting at a very young age. It is extremely time-consuming, which isn’t surprising given all the forms of discipline one can find in the sport -flexibility, agility, strength, balance, coordination, and gracefulness. On top of that, you have to be extremely brave as you cannot afford to have any room for self-doubt as you execute all those flips and tricks.
A group of Irish performance and health experts named rowing as the fifth toughest Olympic sport. Races and competitions often get so intense that the rowers’ bodies shut down other senses such as the auditory and visual senses as all its energy is directed to the muscles at work.
Based on endurance, skill, agility, speed, strength, and physicality, water polo beats out other sports like football and MMA as the toughest sport, according to Bleacher Report. They even found it to be more demanding than Aussie football and boxing.
Mixed Martial Arts (MMA)
Mixed martial arts or MMA is a full-contact sport that combines several disciplines and forms of martial arts and fighting styles. With MMA having the highest incidents of traumatic brain injuries, it takes a lot of dedication and commitment to stick to the sport as a competitor.
If you think running a marathon is exhausting, try covering 2,100 miles in 23 days. This is the distance that cyclists who compete in The Tour de France have to cover. Add to that the high risk of crashes and injuries and you have one of the toughest sports in the world because of its physical and mental demands.
Unsurprisingly, boxing comes in at number one in this list. It is a full-body contact sport that requires endurance, speed, and strength.
Think about it. Jabbing a punching bag itself is exhausting enough. Imagine going 12 three-minute rounds with someone else using your head and body as a punching bag, too.
Given all the physical and mental demands these sports ask from athletes, one has to fully appreciate athletes and their dedication and commitment to their sport. If you are an athlete, we tip our hats off to you!