Friday, August 15, 2008

Is beach volleyball really a sport?

I mean, really? An Olympic sport where the official uniform is a bikini? Who came up with this idea, anyway?

Now granted, beach volleyball seems awfully similar to regular volleyball, at least as I remember it from school (minus the bikinis, of course). And I recognize regular volleyball as a sport, so there's that. On the other hand, if we have regular volleyball, do we need the beach version too? Are we going to have regular basketball (if that is still an Olympic sport) plus Olympic H-O-R-S-E?

Here's another question. Was it as hard to get beach volleyball into the Olympics as it was for the women's marathon? Maybe if the Olympic poobahs of the seventies and before had seen the outfits that would eventually be worn by Paula, Deena, et al, they would have moved a little faster.

I have nothing against beach volleyball. It's not like there aren't other Olympic events that seem more like recreation than sport. But it seems like every time I randomly turn on the Olympics, they are showing beach volleyball! Does George Bush have something to do with this?

Of course, there's also men's beach volleyball. That's what was on when I turned on the TV tonight. But what's this? While the women compete wearing belly-baring bikinis, the men's costume consists of long baggy shorts and tank tops (no Matthew McConaughey-style shirtless chests here). Is it possible they thought that running around on the beach half naked might be considered a little... undignified?


Lisa said...

Have you ever played beach volleyball? It is WAY more difficult (at least for most people, namely ME) than indoor. That is why most beach players used to play for years indoor. It is harder to jump, harder to run and you have a much bigger area to cover. People who are good at beach volleyball are incredible athletes.

I do agree that it would seem much more "professional" if the uniforms were different. I am really not sure why they didn't try to change to something more athletic.

It took until 1996 to get it as an olympic sport. AVP tournaments are hugely popular (the attendance is much higher than indoor) and it is not just because of the bikinis. *wink*

Kristin said...

Oh, I'm not even good at indoor volleyball! I'm sure it's quite challenging... I was just feeling snarky! :)

Laura said...

I think it should definitely be a sport, but I totally agree with you on the uniforms. It seems like they could play just as well in shorts and t-shirts!