urban cycling

Sports that don't look like sports

When it comes to sport, are you more darts and bike rides than triathlons? Together we will take a look at sports that don't look like sports.

How do you like your sport? Shooting some pool on a Saturday night? Or do you feel like you do enough by cycling to work?

And while we're at it, is it really sport? Whether exercise is part of your everyday life, or if sport is first and foremost about playing a game, here we are going to talk about the sports that do not look like sports. Let's start with a good question: where does a game stop and sport begin?

Sport or game? definitions

Starting with the difficult question: is your favourite activity a game or a sport?

Can you do a sport without sweating?

Although the majority of sportsmen and women, athletes and players will agree that playing dominoes in the park is a game and that weekly handball practice is a sport, some disciplines are more difficult to classify. Darts, boules and pool, for example, often have difficulty passing for real sports in the eyes of the general public.

Of course, if we are talking about your favourite sport, this might get your back up, but it is a reality: sports with less physical exertion have a harder time being taken seriously.

Yet nerves of steel, precise movements and total understanding of the game do not only apply to drop kicks on the rugby pitch. They are also the main ingredients of precision sports.


So there we have the first part of our answer: each sport has its own set of technical, physical and strategic qualities. Bad news if you thought taking up boules would mean a summer of putting your feet up.

Sport or game, it's not down to chance

Indeed, luck is the main difference between a game and a sport. Let us explain: whether it's throwing dice or doing a pole vault, there is always an element of chance. In a game, it is an integral part that contributes to the suspense and fun of playing. In a sport, it is something that needs to be controlled and kept to a minimum.

For example: if you spend the evening being dealt bad hands of cards, you were unlucky.

If you concede a penalty in the 92nd minute of your football match, it's unfair.

Pool, darts, boules… sports that don't look like sports


Now that everyone has a clearer idea of ​​why we play cards but we do boxing, it's time to take a closer look at some sports that do not look like sports.

And precisely, taking a closer look will quickly become second nature on a pool table or boules green. Precision sports require a very specific set of skills, as much as any other sport: dexterity, agility, flexibility, coordination, technique... not necessarily what first comes to mind when you think of darts!

And as for the mind, as mentioned earlier, the stakes are equally high: tactics, strategy, responsiveness, creativity, feel for the game... without a doubt, your duel of dexterity rivals any team sport match in a club.

Still have doubts? take a look

Urban cycling, slacklining... do sport without realising it

Now that precision sports fans can relax and spend a Saturday night at the pool hall without getting an earful from their friends preparing for a 20km race, it's time to move on to another category: sportsmen and women who do not know that they are!

Are sport and exercise the same thing?

If school PE lessons put you off sport for life, if the idea of setting a Sunday morning alarm to go running is your worst nightmare, and if away games with the team are not what you would call ​​a good night out, that does not necessarily mean that you do not do any exercise.

Indeed, if we look at it from the other direction, the definition is clearer: if you exert yourself, blow off steam, or work out, then it is sport. And it can be an opportunity to adapt your practice to your preferences and lifestyle.

So you don't have the time or the inclination to join a club, but you go to work by bike? Do you not go anywhere without your skateboard or scooter? The appeal of sport may be stronger than you think.


No sport without a team?

What are your weekends like? If you never say no to a game of paintball or laser tag, or if you set aside time to go for a walk, you might be doing sport without realising it.

Moreover, if your way of relaxing after a long day at work is slacklining or playing frisbee with friends, or if you love spending your holidays in the water, there is a good chance that you enjoy exercising!

Put simply, even if you do not have the time or the inclination to schedule sport into your busy lifestyle, you could combine business with pleasure to get some exercise and, more importantly, have fun.

And if the atmosphere or the world of sport does not appeal to you at first but you want to get out and do something, there are many ways to take the plunge.

And speaking of water, how did you spend your summer? By the sea, in the countryside? Did you have a go at racquet sports, skipping ropes, rope climbing? If you enjoyed the experience, now might be the time to take it up.

Moreover, we have plenty of ideas for you this autumn:

And you, how do you manage to balance sports and life?

If you do sport first and foremost for the fun of it, or if you get caught up in the game as soon as you discover a sport, share your experiences of fun and sport!


Decathlon writer photo


Decathlon team writer

Pitch addict, court enthusiast, pool aficionado and general sports fanatic.