Have you ever wondered who invented some of the most famous sports in the world? Well, you’ve come to the right place. And, believe it or not, many of the sports you know and love have some very strange origin stories. Some go back thousands of years, while others were only recently invented. And while the history of many of sports don’t have a clear-cut beginning, we still have various pieces of evidence of when they were popular in certain civilizations. Curious to hear about where your favorite sports come from? Here are 25 Crazy Origin Stories Of Famous Sports That Are Strange But True.
Billiards, or Pool, was first a lawn game developed in the 1500’s in Northern Europe and France. At that time, it resembled modern-day croquet. Eventually, it evolved in-doors and was placed on a table with green carpet to simulate grass. Rather than struck, the balls were shoved with maces. Later, the cue stick was developed in place of the mace as the mace’s large head was too inconvenient to use. After the industrial revolution, the game evolved rapidly and became more popular.
Beginning as early as the 13th century, Cricket started with boys bowling at a tree stump or through the gate of a sheep pen. The ball was originally a stone until around the 17th century, and the bat was just a large tree branch. The game didn’t really evolve until the 19th century when new techniques and rules were cemented into the game.
Lacrosse was originally a Native American field game known as stickball. The game was mostly played by the Algonquian tribe near the Great Lakes. It was a major religious and athletic event for them with 100 to 100,000 people playing at one time. The rules at the time were very simple: Don’t touch the ball with your hands. Eventually, French missionaries witnessed the game and called it “Lacrosse.”
With roots in ancient western civilization, Badminton was originally called Battledore. In the 1600’s, it was a simple game of knocking the shuttlecock back and forth without letting it hit the ground. This evolved in British occupied India, where a net and new rules were added. The name eventually changed to Badminton.
Starting in the middle ages, Rugby was known as folk football or mob football and would be played between neighboring villages. An unlimited number of players could be involved and they would fight over a pig’s bladder. Rugby and its rules developed later in the 19th century.