Toughest Sports to Play? [Archive] - MensTennisForums.com

Toughest Sports to Play?

World Beater
02-07-2007, 06:52 AM
We sized them up. We measured them, top to bottom. We've done our own Tale of the Tape, and we've come to a surprising conclusion. Pound for pound, the toughest sport in the world is . . .
Boxing.

The Sweet Science.

That's the sport that demands the most from the athletes who compete in it. It's harder than football, harder than baseball, harder than basketball, harder than hockey or soccer or cycling or skiing or fishing or billiards or any other of the 60 sports we rated.

In Page 2's Ultimate Degree of Difficulty Grid, boxing scores higher than them all.

SPORTSNATION: DO YOU AGREE?
Vote: What's the toughest sport of all?


Debate sports' degree of difficulty with Page 2's writers and experts in The Show


Think boxing's not tough? Go toe-to-toe with former heavyweight champ Hasim Rahman in the SportsNation chat room.

But don't take our word for it. Take the word of our panel of experts, a group made up of sports scientists from the United States Olympic Committee, of academicians who study the science of muscles and movement, of a star two-sport athlete, and of journalists who spend their professional lives watching athletes succeed and fail.

They're the ones who told us that boxing is the most demanding sport -- and that fishing is the least demanding sport.

We identified 10 categories, or skills, that go into athleticism, and then asked our eight panelists to assign a number from 1 to 10 to the demands each sport makes of each of those 10 skills. By totalling and averaging their responses, we arrived at a degree-of-difficulty number for each sport on a 1 to 100 scale. That number places the difficulty of performing each sport in context with the other sports we rated.

On the grid below, click on each sortable category to find out how our 60 sports rank in each skill. A glossary key is included at the bottom of the grid that explains each category.

So put on the gloves, get in the ring and let the roundhouse hooks begin.

Degree of Difficulty: Sport Rankings
SPORT END STR PWR SPD AGI FLX NER DUR HAN ANA TOTAL RANK
Boxing 8.63 8.13 8.63 6.38 6.25 4.38 8.88 8.50 7.00 5.63 72.375 1
Ice Hockey 7.25 7.13 7.88 7.75 7.63 4.88 6.00 8.25 7.50 7.50 71.750 2
Football 5.38 8.63 8.13 7.13 6.38 4.38 7.25 8.50 5.50 7.13 68.375 3
Basketball 7.38 6.25 6.50 7.25 8.13 5.63 4.13 7.75 7.50 7.38 67.875 4
Wrestling 6.63 8.38 7.13 5.13 6.38 7.50 5.00 6.75 4.25 6.38 63.500 5
Martial Arts 5.00 5.88 7.75 6.38 6.00 7.00 6.63 5.88 6.00 6.88 63.375 6
Tennis 7.25 5.13 7.13 6.75 7.75 5.63 3.00 5.00 8.38 6.75 62.750 7
Gymnastics 5.38 6.13 6.63 5.00 6.38 10.00 7.50 6.88 4.50 4.13 62.500 8
Baseball/Softball 4.63 5.75 7.63 6.50 6.75 4.75 5.13 5.63 9.25 6.25 62.250 9
Soccer 7.75 4.50 5.13 7.25 8.25 4.75 3.63 6.25 6.50 7.50 61.500 10
Skiing: Alpine 5.13 5.25 6.00 7.38 6.13 5.63 8.38 6.00 5.13 5.63 60.625 11
Water Polo 7.88 6.63 6.88 5.38 6.38 5.00 4.25 6.38 6.25 5.63 60.625 11
Rugby 6.75 7.00 6.38 5.88 6.00 4.13 6.50 7.88 4.38 5.63 60.500 13
Lacrosse 6.63 5.13 5.75 7.00 6.63 4.75 4.38 6.13 7.13 6.88 60.375 14
Rodeo: Steer Wrestling 4.00 7.00 7.88 3.88 4.88 5.00 7.88 6.88 5.13 4.00 56.500 15


SPORT END STR PWR SPD AGI FLX NER DUR HAN ANA TOTAL RANK
Track and Field: Pole Vault 3.38 6.88 7.25 6.13 5.38 7.00 6.63 4.25 5.25 3.75 55.875 16
Field Hockey 6.75 4.50 5.38 6.00 5.75 4.63 3.75 5.00 6.63 6.50 54.875 17
Speed Skating 7.63 7.25 7.38 8.88 4.00 4.25 4.50 4.63 2.88 3.50 54.875 17
Figure Skating 6.38 5.25 6.63 5.13 6.88 8.25 4.88 4.00 3.13 4.25 54.750 19
Cycling: Distance 9.63 6.38 6.25 5.13 3.75 2.63 5.88 6.88 3.00 4.88 54.375 20
Volleyball 5.13 4.88 6.63 5.00 7.00 5.13 2.88 4.63 7.25 5.88 54.375 20
Racquetball/Squash 6.13 3.75 5.00 5.50 7.25 5.88 2.38 2.88 8.38 6.50 53.625 22
Surfing 4.63 5.00 4.13 4.25 6.63 5.50 8.25 5.50 4.38 4.88 53.125 23
Fencing 4.63 3.75 4.25 5.13 6.13 5.63 4.88 4.25 7.25 6.88 52.750 24
Skiing: Freestyle 4.13 5.13 4.88 5.13 6.63 6.88 6.63 5.13 4.13 3.88 52.500 25
Team Handball 4.88 3.88 5.38 5.50 6.00 4.50 3.00 3.88 7.88 5.88 50.750 26
Cycling: Sprints 4.25 6.13 7.88 7.50 4.00 2.88 4.75 4.50 3.63 4.50 50.000 27
Bobsledding/Luge 3.50 5.50 6.50 6.75 4.13 3.25 7.75 3.50 4.13 4.25 49.250 28
Ski Jumping 3.50 4.50 5.75 4.63 4.00 5.00 9.00 4.63 4.38 3.50 48.875 29
Badminton 5.25 3.25 4.00 5.63 7.38 5.25 1.25 2.63 7.25 6.13 48.000 30

SPORT END STR PWR SPD AGI FLX NER DUR HAN ANA TOTAL RANK
Skiing: Nordic 9.00 5.75 4.38 5.13 4.00 4.00 2.75 5.50 3.63 3.88 48.000 30
Auto Racing 5.88 3.50 2.63 1.63 2.75 1.75 9.88 4.38 8.00 7.50 47.875 32
Track and Field: High Jump 3.00 6.00 7.00 6.13 5.63 6.63 3.50 3.50 3.50 2.88 47.750 33
Track and Field: Long, Triple jumps 4.00 5.63 7.13 6.75 5.00 5.75 2.75 3.25 4.00 3.13 47.375 34
Diving 2.88 5.13 4.63 3.00 3.50 8.50 8.38 5.00 3.00 3.00 47.000 35
Swimming (all strokes): Distance 9.25 5.25 4.63 5.50 3.63 5.50 2.63 4.63 2.88 3.00 46.875 36
Skateboarding 4.13 3.75 3.75 4.13 6.13 5.13 6.50 5.25 4.88 3.13 46.750 37
Track and Field: Sprints 3.50 5.13 7.25 9.88 4.63 5.13 2.00 4.13 2.63 2.38 46.625 38
Rowing 8.13 7.75 7.13 4.00 2.50 4.00 1.75 4.38 2.88 3.63 46.125 39
Rodeo: Calf Roping 3.13 5.38 5.00 4.25 5.63 3.88 4.88 3.75 6.38 3.75 46.000 40
Track and Field: Distance 9.63 5.25 3.75 6.00 3.25 4.38 2.00 5.75 1.88 4.13 46.000 40
Rodeo: Bull/Bareback/Bronc Riding 3.25 5.38 4.00 1.75 3.63 4.25 9.50 7.38 3.63 3.13 45.875 42
Track and Field: Middle Distance 6.00 5.13 5.13 7.75 4.00 4.88 2.00 4.75 2.13 3.75 45.500 43
Weight-Lifting 4.13 9.25 9.75 2.63 2.50 3.38 4.00 4.75 2.25 2.38 45.000 44
Swimming (all strokes): Sprints 4.13 5.25 6.25 7.88 3.63 5.50 2.50 3.25 2.75 3.00 44.125 45

SPORT END STR PWR SPD AGI FLX NER DUR HAN ANA TOTAL RANK
Water Skiing 4.63 5.00 4.50 3.00 4.25 4.75 5.88 4.63 4.13 3.25 44.000 46
Table Tennis 3.50 2.50 4.63 4.13 5.88 4.25 1.38 1.88 8.88 6.00 43.000 47
Track and Field: Weights 3.25 7.88 9.13 3.00 3.13 3.00 2.25 3.63 4.00 2.88 42.125 48
Canoe/Kayak 6.75 5.25 5.63 3.50 2.75 3.88 3.63 3.25 3.13 4.25 42.000 49
Horse Racing 4.00 3.88 2.88 1.38 2.88 3.75 8.00 4.50 3.88 6.50 41.625 50
Golf 3.25 3.88 6.13 1.63 1.75 4.00 2.50 2.38 6.00 6.38 37.875 51
Cheerleading 3.63 3.63 3.38 2.25 4.13 7.50 3.63 3.38 2.50 2.25 36.250 52
Roller Skating 4.75 3.38 4.00 5.13 4.00 3.50 2.63 3.38 2.88 2.63 36.250 52
Equestrian 3.38 3.25 1.75 1.25 2.50 2.88 6.00 2.75 2.88 5.13 31.750 54
Archery 2.88 4.50 3.13 1.13 1.63 2.63 2.75 2.13 6.63 3.25 30.625 55
Curling 2.25 2.63 2.50 1.50 2.25 2.63 1.75 1.50 4.88 5.63 27.500 56
Bowling 2.25 2.75 3.38 1.00 1.88 2.38 1.63 1.25 4.75 4.13 25.375 57
Shooting 2.25 2.50 1.38 0.88 1.13 1.75 2.38 1.88 6.75 4.00 24.875 58
Billiards 1.00 1.00 1.75 0.75 1.00 2.63 1.63 0.75 5.25 5.75 21.500 59
Fishing 1.38 1.63 1.25 0.63 1.50 1.13 0.88 0.88 2.38 2.88 14.500 60


Key
ENDURANCE: The ability to continue to perform a skill or action for long periods of time. Example: Lance Armstrong
STRENGTH: The ability to produce force. Example: NFL linebackers.
POWER: The ability to produce strength in the shortest possible time. Example: Barry Bonds.
SPEED: The ability to move quickly. Example: Marion Jones, Maurice Green.
AGILITY: The ability to change direction quickly. Example: Derek Jeter, Mia Hamm.
FLEXIBILITY: The ability to stretch the joints across a large range of motion. Example: Gymnasts, divers.
NERVE: The ability to overcome fear. Example: High-board divers, race-car drivers, ski jumpers.
DURABILITY: The ability to withstand physical punishment over a long period of time. Example: NBA/NHL players.
HAND-EYE COORDINATION: The ability to react quickly to sensory perception. Example: A hitter reacting to a breaking pitch; a drag racer timing acceleration to the green light.
ANALYTIC APTITUDE: The ability to evaluate and react appropriately to strategic situations. Example: Joe Montana reading a defense; basketball point guard on a fast break.



http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/sportSkills



GOLF AS ATHLETIC AS CHEERLEADING? :haha:

Dougie
02-07-2007, 07:21 AM
IMO analysis can always be done, but it´s kind of stupid to compare sports. It´s impossible to say which sport is tougher or more demanding than others. While some sports may be easier in the beginning than others, on the top level there are no "easy" sports. They´re all hard, just different from each other.

oz_boz
02-07-2007, 08:49 AM
This has been posted before.

Loremaster
02-07-2007, 08:51 AM
Tennis is hard because you need great concentration and there is noone to help you on court , but I find Lacrosse pretty hard to play as well

thesupreme
02-07-2007, 09:45 AM
absolutely fascinating. Of course there are intagibles such as mental toughness etc but as an analysis that is superb. Great post! Although it does lead me to one possible speculation though.....


Federer = Tiger Woods x 2 :eek:


Tiger Woods = Lakers halftime show


LOL

james_olympicman
02-07-2007, 10:14 AM
Each person has different strengths and weaknesses so what may be tough for one person would be a lot easier for others. e.g. Tyson good for boxer- career in tennis or football likely to be less successful!
It seems to also underate the technical aspects of sports. In sports like football and tennis the toughest thing is not the strength and endurance factors. Though very important, the hardest thing is to be able to kick or hit the ball to pro level. Whereas American football and Ice Hockey are tough physical sports, they do not seem as technically difficult as football or tennis.
Also some of the comparisons are stupid- skiing dramatically easier then tennis- you try going down a mountain at 80 miles an hour and see hoiw well you do!

Bloodletting
02-07-2007, 01:42 PM
what about triathlon?

Pfloyd
02-07-2007, 01:53 PM
Soccer is so far down the list?

Please, stupid American ESPN commentators, so biased, yet so ignorant....

Loremaster
02-07-2007, 02:02 PM
Soccer is so far down the list?

Please, stupid American ESPN commentators, so biased, yet so ignorant....

Soccer is the easiest sport to play, that's way you don't need anyone to train or help you most of the greatest players where just huge talents playing on the playground etc. Also if one has huge talent he doesn't even need any tactic like Maradona goal against England. Whole WorldCup was won by one player

In my opinion Tennis, Snooker are one of the most difficult. I also find Lacrosse, and Figure Skateing very hard/.

jeahhh!
02-07-2007, 02:03 PM
Golf is a game not a sport

mashamaniac
02-07-2007, 10:30 PM
Retarded Thread Imo!!!

Mistaflava
02-07-2007, 10:35 PM
What a stupid thread...MTF has become an idiot's paradise...

federated
02-07-2007, 11:27 PM
I like this thread. Having played soccer, basketball, field hockey and lacrosse, I'd say basketball was the hardest, though lacrosse was the most fun (maybe because I was best at it :lol:). though tennis seems like it would be most difficult to play well. Just seems like there's so much that needs to be focused: mental toughness, precision, agility, strength, endurance, etc.

hmm.

R.Federer
02-07-2007, 11:30 PM
I like some of the results -- for example Cheerleading requires more analytical aptitude than Golf. Also, Fishing needs more analytical aptitude than Golf :rolls:

Pfloyd
02-07-2007, 11:35 PM
Soccer is the easiest sport to play, that's way you don't need anyone to train or help you most of the greatest players where just huge talents playing on the playground etc. Also if one has huge talent he doesn't even need any tactic like Maradona goal against England. Whole WorldCup was won by one player

In my opinion Tennis, Snooker are one of the most difficult. I also find Lacrosse, and Figure Skateing very hard/.

I was referring to the sport being physically taxing, not hard to play.

fenomeno2111
02-08-2007, 12:46 AM
6.25 on endurance for soccer??? What a joke! On average you run 3-5 miles in a game...Also there is no timeouts other than halftime. Soccer definitely higher than number 10, I agree with hockey being way up there but not football, there's so many different positions It's like playing a different game.