5 obscure Olympic sports you won't regret watching

Most people think the Olympics are just about swimming, track, gymnastics and the other more popular sports. The lesser known events get pushed to channels you've never heard of to waste away in Olympic oblivion.

No more.

During the 2016 Rio Olympics, do yourself a favor and check out these five obscure sports. Not like you have anything else to do at 11 a.m. on a Wednesday.


Trust me, these are not the trampoline stunts you pull in your backyard. These supreme athletes bounce over 25 feet in the air and complete an absurd amount of flips and twists along the way. They also have to land in that little square or else they get a penalty.

Athletes to watch:

  • Dong Dong, China
  • Logan Dooley, U.S.
  • Rosie MacLennan, Canada


With the popularity of shows like "Game of Thrones," swordplay is hot right now. Tune in to watch these masters parry and thrust their way to Olympic medals.

Athletes to watch:

  • Ibtihaj Muhammad, U.S.
  • Alexander Massialas, U.S.
  • Ruben Limardo, Venezuela


You probably think of badminton as a lame sport rich people play during Sunday brunch -- not the way these guys and girls play it. The speed and power of Olympic badminton is something you need so see to believe.

Athletes to watch:

  • Lee Chong Wei, Malaysia
  • Lin "Super" Dan, China
  • Carolina Marin, Spain

Indoor cycling

Welcome to the velodrome. These events are pure madness, like the roller derby but on bicycles. There's plenty of potential for crashes that lead to fights -- definitely worth a look.

Athletes to watch:

  • Bradley Wiggins, Great Britain
  • Mark Cavendish, Great Britain
  • Sarah Hammer, U.S.

Modern Pentathlon

The modern pentathlon takes five events that have absolutely nothing to do with each other -- fencing, swimming, shooting, running, horse riding -- and mashes them together. It's worth tuning in to see someone jump out of the pool, grab a gun and then leap onto a horse. OK maybe that's not how it works, but it's still cool.

Athletes to watch:

  • Margaux and Isabella Isaksen, U.S. (first sisters to compete in the same Olympic modern pentathlon)
  • Aleksander Lesun, Russia
  • David Svoboda, Czech Republic