Top 10 Hardest Sports to Play

Hardest sports to do that take the most skill but not given credit to.
The Top Ten
1 Gymnastics Gymnastics is a sport involving the performance of exercises requiring strength, flexibility, balance and control.

To be honest, gymnastics is the hardest sport. I was a level 8 before I had to quit because I fractured my back. I moved to swimming and I'm hoping to go to the olympics one day, but lord help me. Gymnastics is scary. You have to FORCE your body to do things people can't even begin to do, don't get me wrong swimmers. It's hard, the endurance swimming takes is a lot. It's tiring. But, we don;t get many injuries. It's pretty hard to drown, and we mostly get a scrape or the occasional cramp. Gymnasts, hands down or the bravest and one of the most capable people in the world.

Honestly, no other sport can possibly compare to gymnastics. When I quit, 3 years ago, I tried out some other sports. I competed swimming, horseback, and cheerleading for quite a while. I have respect for everyone who pursues these sports, but they just weren't the same level of challenge as gymnastics.

I came back to the gym this year despite the grueling practices, the pain, the inevitable injuries, and coaches who yell at you after every mistake. Gymnastics is just so hard because you are chasing perfection while doing crazy difficult things. It's a mind game. You have to FORCE your body to get over the fear to do insane skills on a 4 inch balance beam and don't even think about missing your hands! If you have a bad fall, you're expected to get back up and do it again until it's right.

Little girls and boys train their childhoods away with hopes of someday reaching perfection in the hardest sport in the world - gymnastics.

Finally, people always think that gymnastics is such an easy sport. Well they obviously don't know what they are talking about. Trying gymnastics when your little doesn't count. You don't have to do anything. All you do is prance around the gym and do nothing. If you were serious, you will get somewhere. Training for an hour after school for cheerleading is pathetic. The level 4 gymnasts train for at least 3 hours 4 days a week. And we don't mess around when we condition either. When you commit to this sport, there is no turning back. Gymnastics IS the hardest sport in the world, and for all those people who think that its just so easy, why don't you go try to do what we can do.

It is definitely the most strenuous sport! It is difficult, very difficult, to reach absolute perfection. People may watch it and say, "oh yeah, gymnastics, the easy sport, I can easily do that," have no idea what they are saying. Gymnasts train many hours each day, sometimes up to 6- 10 hours each day. The conditioning is also quite tough, and that is because you have to be strong in order to do well in gymnastics. Another thing is it is very difficult because it requires fearlessness and strong mental discipline. You have to conquer the fear of injury, failure, imperfection, and just doing the skill in general. You also deal with injuries from bleeding palms to broken necks to paralysis. You have to know exactly what you are doing, and if you don't then good luck to you. Olympic gymnasts make it look so easy, but it really isn't at all.

2 Ice Hockey

"Horse back riding? Really? That's not even a sport! "
Really? Do you know how insulting that is? We work 4 hours a day, 6 or 7 days a week every week of every month and Every month of every year. So that 1 or 2 times a month during the summer we could have a chance to win a 20 cent ribbon. If it's not hard why do we have to work everyday of the year for a show, and still have the possibility to get 8th place. Why then, wouldn't we not work all year then go to a show and get 1st place? If it were so easy. And you say a real sport is scored and not judged, and that horse riding is judged. But it's not. Judging is an opinion. Is it an opinion... That I knocked down a rail? That I wasn't on the correct lead? That the horse took a half step before the jump? That the horse refused the jump? That we went over the time limit? Are these opinions? No. They are facts. We get scores. Knocked down a rail? 4 faults. Horse refused? 4 faults. Over the time limit? 2 faults for every 5 seconds ...more

You can imagine Zdeno Chara as a star basketball player, you can imagine Pavel Datsyuk as a speedy soccer player, you can imagine Jarome Iginla playing professional baseball (because he did), but can you imagine LeBron James, Christiano Ronaldo, or Miguel Cabrera quickly getting into hockey? No. None of them have likely ever worn ice skates. Anyone can mount a horse, throw a football, wrestle, and row with a slight amount of practice (I understand the difficulty of becoming skilled) but hockey requires the ability to skate and not just a little bit, you NEED to be an excellent skater to play the game at all. Hockey is tough. Period.

Hockey is the hardest no matter what everybody else says! You can run by the age of 3! If you can do gymnastic at 2 it's not hard. Know why we wear equipment? It's because there are 9 other people on the ice going 90 miles per hour all going for the same puck! People say hockey isn't hard but in order to play the beautiful sport you must have the strength and power of a football player, the stamina of a marathon runner and the concentration of a brain surgeon. You tell me if it is hard or not... Don't give me that crap about gymnastics is so hard because it doesn't hold a candle to ice hockey!

Ya I'll be real here. I don't play this sport but I'm not going to be immature and bash on hockey. Kudos to those who play ice hockey. It IS a hard sport and this is coming from someone who doesn't even play the sport. I'm a synchronized swimmer actually and I am certainly no creampuff! I train 7 times a week each day being 3-5 hour long practices in the pool. But my point is, is that I respect hockey. And hockey players. Cause some people might think that hockey is overrated and that the guys who play it are dumb jocks, but I think it's a very physically demanding sport. Lots of injuries happen.

3 Boxing Boxing is a martial art and combat sport in which two people wearing protective gloves throw punches at each other for a predetermined set of time in a boxing ring..

It is easy when treated as a hobby. You just punch and jab the bag. But when it comes to competitive and training, that's where you actually get boxing, and not many people realize how hard boxing is. You have to work on your footwork (usually the hardest part), polish your moves such as hooks uppercuts and jabs, and you'll have to choose what technique fits you best. When it comes to challenging someone, you have to be focused and time your attacks/combinations and defenses or else you will suffer a loss. It's not recommended to self-learn if you're really into boxing or else you will just develop bad habits. It's ranked as the toughest sport and it's definitely not for the faint of heart, but I love it...

Really? Soccer harder than boxing? Anything harder than boxing for that matter? No. Imagine being across a boxing ring with a an that wants to hurt you. BADLY. Not only does the nerve aspect of this sport take the cake, but you must also have speed, power, endurance, durability, agility, flexibility, immense skill, and pretty much every other aspect of physical strength, speed and endurance. For all you people putting soccer and all those other sports above the sweet science, you probably have never been in a ring yourself or out on the road at 5:00 A.M running your daily 3-6 miles.

I want to laugh at all the others placed before boxing. I did gymnastic, wrestled in high school, football in high school and college, played baseball in high school and also boxed during my college years. HANDS down boxing was the most demanding sport. Not only is it hard to do and demanding, people we must under stand that the objective in boxing is punch someone to knock them out cold. That takes a lot of gutts to participate in. Boxer don't tap out like MMA, nor do they wrestled or do ground work where some rest period can be done. Over 70 to 80 percent of their punches, is to the HEAD of your opponent. I've done other "Games" too, golf and bowling, and I call them "games" because although it is difficult to master, it is definitely not a manly "sport". Anytime you are dressed to go to church, you can't call that a sport.

I used to think I was in really good shape from football and basketball until I went to my first boxing class. I sweated like crazy. A lot of people think that all you do is just learn to punch. No you have to learn to be fast, strong, patient and be able to be physically and mentally beaten but still put your all into it. My classes are so hard with everything. We are costantly working out and just wishing the class to end. We aren't trying to impress judges we are trying to knock our opponent out and he is doing the same. It is pretty hard to look at who you are fighting and see his cold eyes. People say they know pain tolerance, but try to withstand getting punched repeatedly by a trained person who can make his punch have its full power. boxing is an tiring sport and rigorous sport, but an amazing one.

4 Swimming Swimming is an individual or team sport and activity. Competitive swimming is one of the most popular Olympic sports, with events in freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke, and butterfly.

As a swimmer, let me tell you: swimming is BRUTAL. You go to practice a MINIMUM of four times a week, swim a MINIMUM of 2.5 hours each time, no breaks. You finished your freestyle? Oh, time for butterfly. You came behind in 0.01 SECONDS? Sorry, you won't be making it onto the team. The coach shouts improvements at you while you swim lap after lap, the chlorine water filling up your goggles to the point where you can't even see, the strokes tearing away at your exhausted arms and legs, the lack of breath. In which sport are you UNDERWATER to the point where you CAN'T BREATHE? Soccer you're on land and you can at least BREATHE. In swimming, if you breathe, you lose time, if you lose time, you lose all those hours you spent because you didn't make it onto the team or you didn't make the cut for an event. You will breathe ONLY when your lungs feel like they will burst and you will die. And there's such a precision to the form, too. Do you know HOW HARD it is to do a fast breaststroke? Do ...more

I'm a competitive swimmer, and although I may not be the fastest, I absolutely love my sport. For all you non-swimmers out there: Do you know the bursting pain of holding your breath for the entire time you race 50 meters, while every muscle in your body is burning with pain? Do you know the relief that overcomes you when you reach finish the race and gasp for oxygen? Do you know what it feels like to do many hours of swimming as well as dry land? Do you know what it feels like to pass out from lack of oxygen? Do you know what it feels like to miss a qualifying time by 0.01 seconds and cry yourself to sleep?

No, I don't think so.

Okay, I've done a lot of sports over the years and swimming is definitely the hardest of them all. People complain of doing conditioning for most of the practice, but swimming IS conditioning. I mean it demands every muscle of your body, and believe me, you have to be TOUGH. In my opinion, swimming and gymnastics are the top two hardest. Swimming is so underestimated. Seriously. I absolutely hate when people argue over the hardest sport because its like comparing apples and oranges, they are all different in their own way. A lot of people think that at swim practice we just swim back and forth the whole time and that's that, but it's so much more than that. The sets we do are so utterly grueling and demanding of your body. I've seen many people (myself included) throw up out of pain and exhaustion during practice. Also, if you miss a few practices you immediately get out of shape and its really hard to get back into practices. Swimmers are all so fit and it is so important to eat ...more

My whole family is made up of swimmers. I am the best according to age and skill because to get to the top, you really have to work hard. The Olympic swimmers are some of the best athletes since they put in so many hours of dedicated practice. This is not a sport where you can show up at practice and expect to get better. You have to try your hardest and physically wear yourself out. This sport requires more than 100% of both your physical and mental energy.

Swimming has taught me many things. Among them is how to set goals, and how to achieve them.

But what happens when you don't achieve them? When you lose? What happens when you miss your goal by a few tenths of a second?

You learn how to deal with disappointment, and this is the greatest lesson of all.

You get back up. You stand up tall. And you try it again. You tell yourself that you have to keep improving. Then you do better than you thought you could. Your lungs burn worse than you thought possible. ...more

5 Water Polo

Nobody's ever attempted to rip my swimsuit off and use me as a human backboard while swimming... Just at water polo. As somebody who does both sports, I'd say that water polo is definitely tougher. It requires more stamina to continually release in the water and sprint back and forth. Even the times when you have more rest, you're still treading water, which takes energy. And at the same time, you have to be aware of the other players in the pool and the position of the ball, and try to pass and shoot while other players are pressing you. Players are also extremely dirty, because the refs can't see most of it - they will dig into pressure points, kick off other players, elbow, gouge, scratch, twist, anything that they can think of to get an advantage.

Water Polo is like soccer, basketball, swimming, and wrestling all in one sport. And you have to keep from drowning when the opponents have all their weight on you. People tend to think it's not a hard sport because you just float in the water but they don't understand that even if you aren't moving up or down the pool the players are still treading water. And yes, broken bones are less common because the water acts as a buffer. But then think about how hard someone has to get hit in order to break something. I had my nose broken and I know many other people that have and it takes some serious strength to do that in the water. I think that water polo is one of the toughest, hardest, most strenuous, and under-rated games out there.

You play water polo for the first time, and you feel like you're going to die. It is the most grueling sport there is. The conditioning is harder than what swimmers do, the games are fights underwater and conditioning above, and the mental stress that is put on the players during the game to not break down and give up when your body cries out is unreal. There truly isn't anything harder to play. Especially when the guy you're guarding gives you the look. The look that tells you he wants to tear you apart and score a goal. If you ever doubt that water polo is the most difficult sport, look at the men and women who play it. You have to look like them, and be strong like them to stand a chance in this sport.

I play water polo competitively. I don't think people realize how tough and how hard water polo is to play. If the game is not running time, then it can go on for up to an hour. Go to your local pool. Treat water for 1 hour, while swimming as fast as you can back and fourth without touching the bottom of the pool. Then add in someone who is bigger and stronger than you try to drown you, and all the while you're trying to keep a ball away from then and get it into their net. When I was 12, I got a concussion from an 18 year old guy (I'm a girl), when I was checking him for a game. I have been used as a human back board, and the amount of bruises and scratches I get are insane. Imagine playing a sport in which your opposing team sharpening their finger and toe nails for optimal scratching effect is so common that referees have to check nails before every single game for fear someone's eyes will get scratched out. I have so much more to say but I won't, because I have a 3 hour water polo ...more

6 American Football

Football IS the one of the toughest sport. Grown men colliding is always going to be tough to do. BUT, it is not very "hard". You don't get much break but you get some. And any break is better than none. It's not a very physically demanding sport. The hardest part about football? The practices. Sports like soccer rowing or water polo are MUCH harder sports. Put a soccer player in pads and make him running back? He'll damn near die. But a football player in a rowing boat? And he'll place last. Football belongs higher on the list but not in the top 10. I have played many sports and Football had the worst practices by far, but the games were nothing.

This is the worst list I have ever seen. Football at 20? Really? Competitive Dancing is ten spots higher, let alone swimming being number two. I played football in parks and rec when I was a lot younger, and it was hardcore. One time some kid got hit so hard he broke some ribs and they had an ambulance come out onto the field to bring him to the hospital. This is Parks and Rec for middle school, not even a Middle School team. Bring it up quite a few notches to the pros, and people are tearing ACLs left and right, breaking ankles, and getting concussed every week. Football is without a doubt top 2 or 3.

It is really hard to catch with all the gear. The gear weighs you down too. People think that football players are weak because of the gear, but try to run and catch and do everything you do with all of that gear. The helmets block the view of catching and you can't run as fast. Also all those huge linebackers just got bigger with that gear. People are always saying "come have a football player do our practice." How about you go a do a football practice. The condition might be easy, but lets add in getting plowed into the dirt. Also add the 20-30 pounds of gear on your back.

Football is one of the most difficult sports because it requires incredible physical and mental ability. While a lot of the sports listed are almost purely physical, football requires players to process a lot of information and react very quickly, all while 300 pounders are coming at you. I know that it may not be top 5, but it deserves top ten. Also, the comment that a football player would lose in a rowing competition is irrelevant. Any athlete would lose when against elite competition in a sport they've never played.

7 Wrestling Wrestling is a combat sport involving grappling type techniques such as clinch fighting, throws and takedowns, joint locks, pins and other grappling holds.

Wrestling is so hard because of the time and effort into it. I mean anyone can wrestle, however it's the people that can wrestle well who really put the effort and time that the sport requires. People do not understand the preparation it takes to be a wrestler. It's like being in the army. When you are wrestling, you do not even have time to think about what you need to do. You just have to go out there and do it. Of course this takes practice because for your moves to be automatic you must drill them at least 1000 times before getting it perfect. And that is only one part of the sport. When a wrestler is cutting and maintaining their weight, they usually go to sleep on an empty stomach. Cutting weight is very exhausting and sometimes you question why you're even doing it. It's the wrestlers that really want it who drill the hardest all the time, and the ones who push themselves to go run 3 miles a day at least. But these people get unnoticed my the many people surrounding them. They ...more

Okay here's the thing: everyone is completely biased when they say their sport is the hardest. I mean, I can see how swimming, water polo, and gymnastics are ranked high. However, a lot of people don't understand wrestling and therefore don't think it's hard. They just think about how it looks gay. People think their practices are hard because they do a little conditioning a day, like 20 minutes. Wrestling is ALL conditioning plus strength endurance. You are grappling with all your strength for 6 minutes (can be more or less, depending on how you do) against someone else doing the same. Also, what other sport has blood time and injury time?

The only people who say wrestling isn't the hardest sport are people who are afraid to do it. Wrestling is not only the sport you need the most discipline for by far, you also need endurance, strength, speed, skill, heart and the list goes on. This is why most people who try wrestling quit very early into the season. I once tried to get a basketball guy into the wrestling room just once because he was saying how easy it is and he threw up during warm ups. I've played soccer, rugby, rugby 7's, football, Cross Country, and I'm telling you right now wrestling is by far the hardest sport.

Wrestling is by far the most difficult sport available. While it is tough to argue about which is more taxing during the actual sport due to everyone insisting their sport is the most difficult, certain things are undeniably harder in wrestling than anywhere else. Swimming may be dufficult becayse you can't always breathe, but in swimming you aren't being choked for 30 seconds fighting off your back. Wrestling demands more physucally from you in a short period of time than any otyer sport. I am more tired after wrestling all out for 5 minutes than after running 5k in cross country or anything else. The factor that really crowns wrestling the king of most difficult sports is the commitment it requires off the mat. Imagine doing any of the sports on the list, now imagine doing that same thing without eating the previous two days because you need to make weight. Also, you have to run for an hour in a 100 degree room in order to lose weight. In the end, wrestling is without a doubt the ...more

8 Basketball Basketball is a sport played by two teams of five players on a rectangular court. The objective is to shoot a ball through a hoop 18 inches in diameter and 10 feet high mounted to a backboard at each end.

Heres the thing about Basketball many people don't understand. Whether you play professionally or just at your average pickup game... You're going to get hit, hit hard in your face, sternum, hip or wherever seems vulnerable. This applies to ballers who are very talented as well because its hard to stay in front of someone when they are good without fouling. You can also roll your ankle occasionally.

Basketball isn't easy to play. Because you can always get injury by playing basketball I am a basketball player and I play really hard that sometimes I get my ankle hurt...

And if you want to be a basketball player you have to have all the skill to fit in the game...
You have to go to your practice at all times
People run 12 to 15 laps for their practice and that's what we do in our team.. To just get our skill motivated in the game, we run 5 laps every practice and we add and add to be more faster at running.

Basketball isn't easy as it seems. Running. Lifting weights. Hand-eye coordination. Fast reflexes. Guts. Agility. Accuracy. Take one part from every sport, put it together and you get basketball! The training is hell and you get injured really easily, by turning too quickly or being ankle broke, you get injured. Getting rammed in the ribbed or elbowed, you're injured.

There's way more to basketball than people think. It requires so much physical strength, agility, focus, hard work and so much more. It's not just shooting a ball at a basket. To be a basketball player you need so much IQ about the game and so much talent. It takes athletesism and mental focus. It's more than just scoring, it's more than just running up and down the court, and it's more than being able to shoot. Basketball is underrated.

9 Figure Skating Figure skating is a sport in which individuals, duos, or groups perform on figure skates on ice. It was the first winter sport included in the Olympics, in 1908. The four Olympic disciplines are men's singles, ladies' singles, pair skating, and ice dance.

Figure skating is for sure the hardest sport. In addition to what everyone else has said, there is a huge mental aspect to it, something that most sport players don't even understand. Sometimes you can be so afraid to fall on that hard ice that you psych yourself out and can't even do the jump you are attempting for years! Gymnasts and cheerleaders feel pain but the floor they work on gives in and is slightly bouncy. Ice is 100% hard, and hurts much worse than any fall I've taken doing gymnastics. I have a bruise that was been on my knee for at least 2 years and I keep falling on it so it will probably never heal, it hurts sometimes when a put just a tiny pressure on it. People often think that once you learn how to skate you will all of sudden be able to do all the spins and jumps we do, but that is ridiculous, you will break something if you try to figure skate after just learning how to stroke around the ice.

I am a figure skater. I started 4 months ago and I am now in free style 1. It is so hard! When you fall sometimes you don't want to get up. But you have to! ' To be able to do any jump you must flexible! When you watch the Olympic the girls legs are born flexible they made it that way. The height is so hard. One of the most basic jumps the waltz jump isn't that easy to get high without making it look ugly. It looks so easy, but the reason it looks easy is because the skater is so good. Don't judge a sport until you tried it. You might not get tired if you have never ice skates before and you are going for fun. But you have to admit it is hard! Just skating is hard! Not to mention that more than half the people that go ice skating don't even skate they walk on ice like they were walking on the floor! They can't even do they easiest thing: skate. And most people don't even know how to tie their skates!

It's very difficult because its not only physically demanding, but mentally demanding. Most of the time you aren't with a team so it's all on you to do your best. Everything has to be prefect in your technique to be the best and even if you have great jumps and spins, your expression has to be perfect too. They don't care if you're smiling or not in football. Also, when you are synchronized skating, like me, you have to work together as a team mentally and physically. If you don't, you could cause a collision and someone could get seriously hurt. Judges judge you on the ability to perform movements in unison. There are many other things that go along with figure skating: dance, moves in the field, freestyle, synchronized, and pairs. Figure skating is my favorite Olympic event by far because its actually entertaining to watch. It's not fun to watch football because you know what they're going to do: run across the field with a ball and maybe throw it a few times. In figure skating, ...more

I have only dreamed about Figure Skating up to this point, but one thing is clear. It takes dedication, skill, and many other things that I hadn't even considered. You have to muscle condition and take ballet to even be considered entering a competition. This is of course, after you take many courses, possibly even private lessons if you can't get the hang of it. Many people practice for years and cannot make it to nationals be the mental, physical, and emotional strain is too much. To think walking backwards is hard enough, think of the courage and skill it takes to skate at high speeds backwards, and at perfect timing jump into the air, spin, and land on the edge of a 4 mm blade. I believe this is the sport of aerodynamics and warriors.

10 Horseback Riding Horseback riding (or Equestrian) is one of the most intense sports known to man. Not only because it's physically challenging, but it takes more than athleticism. Horseback riding takes commitment, time, patience, and most importantly building a bond with your horse. If you don't have a good relationship with your horse, you're not going to have a good experience. You need to spend as much time with your horse as you can, riding and on the ground. You need to learn how to work with your horse, not against your horse. It's a team sport, a team of two. more.

In no way does the horse do all of the work. Heels down, toes up, calves back and on, supporting the horse, back straight, shoulder back, hands low and still in constant contact with the horses mouth without pulling too hard, look where you're going. Maintain this position perfectly while controlling a 1,000 pound animal with a mind of its own.
This involves moving it with just one leg, constantly supporting it and worry about exactly how fast or where it's going, posting or rising up and down in the saddle with almost no help form the stirrups, turning with a bit of leg rein, weight shift and looking, but not too much or too little of anything while maintaining speed and perfect position. Try reining in a 1,000 pound animal going 20 mph with just your arms, but not pulling too hard. Try having to be constantly aware of every part of your body and your horse's at every second while moving at 20 mph, making hairpin turns, jumping fences and despite the speed always be three steps ...more

I have ridden for ten years. Believe, me it is the most difficult sport. Anyone who says different is wrong! Most people say Equestrian isn't a sport because the only time they've ever ridden is on the beach while on vacation. That is NOT riding.

I'm a show jumper. This is what I have to do: I get on a 1500 pound animal, who has been trained all winter and is at his peak, hurtle myself over 4 ft obstacles that are often 3 ft wide, whip around corners as fast as possible while not knocking anything down.

Yes, the horse plays a big part in the sport (obviously) but when I am racing around the competition ring, who do you think is keeping that animal balanced? Who do you think is telling the horse exactly where to put each of his feet, every single step of the way? And, in the judged classes, you have to make it look pretty and smooth.

A lot of people say Equestrian isn't a sport because you don't have to be fit to do it; that's also not true. I admit that I'm not a ...more

It is the thing that keeps up breathing, living, and being. It is more that a sport. If is a life. One little thing, one millimeter more rein on one side and you could die. A butterfly could change weather you ride off or are ambulanced off. Your are going 45 mph towards some thing that won't move if you hit it. Your team mate is something that is 10 times bigger that you and can kill you as easily as you breath. There is no safe. There is no perfect. And there is no redo. There is no bench. We ARE the secret athletes that put our lives in the hoofs of a flight animal and others say its easy. There is no easy. There is no turning back. You have to commit or you are falling off. I am a cheerleader. I get thrown 20 feet in the air. Every time, there is a possibility that my team will not catch me. If they don't, I land on 3 inch mats. But in ridding when I fall from that height and there is no one there. There is no one to catch me. I am falling either on the solid wood poles or the ...more

I have been horseback riding for five years. I've done gymnastics. I've played softball. I've swam competitively. I have also played golf for eight years. Not to take anything away from any other sports that still require hard work, but horseback riding is by far the most difficult. In no other of these sports do you have to control both yourself and an animal that is ten times stronger than you. A horse can spook, go after other horses and buck you off, and you have to control him with your leg. Do you have any idea how much strength that takes? Let me write that again. Control a 1400 pound animal WITH YOUR LEG. I only weigh 80 pounds. So it takes a little muscle. Not only that, but you have a posture to maintain with all parts of your body, and the horse's body. Did I mention that you still have to hold that position while jumping a three foot fence?

You can never be perfect at horseback riding. There's always a reason you can get better.

And not only is it one of the ...more

The Contenders
11 Tennis Tennis is a racket sport that can be played individually against a single opponent or between two teams of two players each.

I cannot believe that tennis is as far down the list as this, honestly I don't think it is the most physical demanding sport but it is by far the hardest mentally. I am a tennis player and I have been playing since I was 4, trying to be a professional! The physical is so hard, you cry, you tear muscles, play through pain, throw up... But this is the same with most sports! I think it's a joke to put ANY team sport before tennis, in a team you can help each other but in tennis you are out there in the sun for 2/3 hours alone!... People that do not play tennis to a reasonable level do not understand how much of tennis is mental and how much pressure is on the players at all times, they don't understand that you could be a set and 5-0 up and lose because of one point where the player losses momentum. I believe overall that tennis is THE most difficult sport to play and it is seriously underestimated.

Tennis is #20? That is an absolute joke. In a couple of weeks you will probably (once again) see Rafael Nadal play Novak Djokovic in the finals of the Australian Open. As usual, they will play for about 5 1/2 hours in 100-degree weather with no significant stoppage in play (no halftime... No endless basketball timeouts). They might be only a day removed from having both been in similar semi-final matches... Plus the accumulation of punishment from the rest of the tournament... Plus no off-season. Make no mistake about it people, if you tune-in to the Australian Open Finals you will be watching the 2 best athletes on the planet. Period. End of story. I appreciate the grace, strength and focus necessary to be an elite gymnast but their routines are short with long breaks in-between and always in a climate-controlled environment. I could go on and on but the bottom line is pick a gymnast... ANY gymnast and if you think that person is a better athlete than Rafael Nadal then you simply ...more

I highly disagree with anything on this list. Everyone will definitely vote for what they have been playing, or what their favorite sports are because of their own experiences. I mean, define what "hard", then maybe we can have separate voting categories based on strength, durability, dexterity, endurance, flexibility, etc. I honestly don't think tennis is the hardest sport in the world, but I do think it's top ten. I'm just disappointed that tennis is behind sports that can be literally learned and played at a national level in a short 3-4 years. Heck, it took me 3-4 years to finally be able to play a semi-consistent forehand. In conclusion, This entire list is completely subjective and has no sort of validity whatsoever.

Tennis is way underestimated! I expected it to be at least the top ten but 21?! Tennis takes a lot of agility, strength, and mental fortitude. Well unless your a beginner. I think people underestimate this sport because when they play, a point only lasts like 5 seconds but the better you get, the longer the rallies get and the harder you are able to hit. The pressure in a game is extremely intense and hot weather only makes it worse. You have to play hours in the scorching sun and keep close focus on the ball. Technique is important because a single twitch and the ball will fault or hit the net. A lot of strategy is needed too because you need to find your opponents weakness and expose it. Well, my point is tennis should be higher on the list than gymnastics or dancing...

12 Soccer Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a sport played between two teams of eleven players each. It is played with a spherical ball. The objective is to score the ball in the other teams goal.

I have been playing soccer all f my life. And I can tell you that it is one of the hardest sports. Obviously rugby and gymnastics beat us in strength and endurance, but soccer takes a lot of skill. First you have to be able to sprint around with a ball which might sound easy, but until you have tried sprinting at your fastest speed you cannot talk. Also at a higher level of soccer you are more physical you have girls that are bigger and older than you slide tackling you, tripping you, body checking you, and pushing you down. Soccer also has so many aspect and different roles to make a team function. YOu have to have a goal keeper who needs to be quick on her feet and strong to be able to stop shots that could go over 40 mph. As a defender I have to be able to make the decision when to attack the ball. I need to be quick but also need to hold me ground so I don't get run over by an oncoming attacker. A midfielder needs to have endurance these players are a forward and a defender. So ...more

Soccer is for sure one of the hardest sports. People think, oh well you just kick the ball into the net, honestly that isn't how it works. When a soccer player receives the ball, millions of things are going through their head like, whether to dribble, whether to pass, whether to shoot. Once they decide, even more things go through their head. If they decide to take the ball themselves they have to decide where to dribble to, if they need to do any trick moves, and when they need to get rid of the ball. Then if they decide to make a pass, they have to think about timing, how hard the ball needs to be played, who to play it to, what kind of pass needs to be made, and then once they get rid of the ball, they have to make a run elsewhere to try to get open to receive a pass. If they shoot, they need to think where to place it and how hard to shoot it, they also have to follow up their shots.

Decision making isn't the only aspect of soccer that is important. You have to be fast ...more

Soccer is definitely the absolute hardest sport that I have ever played in my entire life. I have tried just about every single sport imaginable, figure skating, competition cheerleading, competition swimming, gymnastics etc. And only some of those sports compare to the level of skill, strength, speed and motivation that soccer requires. Also in soccer you have to have aggression for the ball, which is something you cannot teach. In soccer you have to do all kinds of core training and running. How is cheerleading harder? I did cheerleading and it wasn't even that hard. Its only hard if you aren't good at it! Also swimming was probably the easiest sport I have ever played in my entire life. But then again how hard could a combination of floating, kicking and arm strokes in a chlorine pool be so hard? I can agree that gymnastics is one of the hardest sports but figure skating.. REALLY? Figure skating was again among some of the easiest skills for me.

Soccer is by far one of the hardest sports out there. I do gymnastics. It is harder. I did track and cross country. It is harder. I did basketball and baseball, and it is definitely harder. When was the last time you wrote a paragraph with your foot. That's right, never. In soccer, you use your feet, not your hands, which is a WHOLE new area of your body to master. I play midfield in soccer, and I can run up to 7 miles in a game, maybe more. I sprint, I jog, I kick, I THINK. That's another thing. You actually have to think when you play soccer. In cross country, you run, but you don't think. I'm not saying that soccer is absolutely the hardest sport, but it is MOST DEFINITELY harder than most sports.

13 Rugby Rugby league football, usually called rugby league, league, rugby or football , is a full contact sport played by two teams of thirteen players on a rectangular field.

No rugby came before American football and soccer. Then American football added sissy pads and helmets. For rugby you need to be more fit then a huge majority of sports. Mentally and physically. And no your not wrestling if you were then the rules would be different... Actually the game itself would be different in all. Brave as they are in American football? That's a joke not only did Americans mimic the sport, but like I said they wear pads and helmets! Yeah you get hurt but try getting crushed in a scrum with no protection or every tackle is followed by 4-8 different solid muscle players.

Rugby should be first. Rugby is like American football but with no breaks every 10 seconds, Its like cross country but you have to do it for 80 minutes and people constantly needing being smashed or getting smashed yourself. Some rugby tackles are measured at 7G (7 times gravity) and injuries seen in rugby are seen in head on car crashes with both cars going at 30MPH. You have to constantly work, when you have the ball, you have to dodge, pass, think, smash... When you haven't got the ball it is even worse! You have to: tackle, get smashed, run dummy lines, follow the ball carrier, help him, drive over and all that for 80 minutes.Why do you think rugby players are so massive!

Rugby is the Final Frontier for respectability in sport. It is a team sport requiring true fitness and discipline(not football's or hockey's definitions), and a wide variety of skills that require to be spontaneously deployed. Personally, I can't stand any other North American sport based on how it is superficially presented: commercials, full suits of armour as equipment, athletes being endorsed for their ill-discipline and degenerative behaviour, and a full army of analysts talking rubbish. Baseball is the worst -- quite frankly, I am embarrassed simply watching it so I can only imagine the shamelessness of all those that partake any further involvement.

Rugby is not only a Physical sport, its super mental. As a nationally ranked team player I would know. Rugby requires the physical stamina of any soccer player. Also rugby players need to know the variations of all the rules depending on a referee. Think about it, if you were playing a game of football you get the ball run, Down. 15 second break. In Rugby its Boom hit, Get up run again Boom hit. Constant contact and constant aggression and decision making under serious pressure. Rank 14 is seriously incorrect.

14 Australian Rules Football

I play afl I think that it is one of the hardest sports in the world. AFL players need to incorporate the skills of so many different sports into the one game. They need to be strong, agile, have good coordination and so many more. In footy tackling is a major major of the game and is quite dangerous, not to mention there is absolutely no padding or protective gear except for a mouth guard. It is probably the most data rich sport in the world without a doubt. they're are so many different techniques and skills used that the amount of data collected from one game is astonishing These are just a few of the ongoing list of reasons why AFL is easily the hardest sport in the world.

Brutal sport. Constant, fierce pace and requires a 360 degrees awareness at all times where tackles and hits can come from any direction. Requires a high level of coordination and skills in many different aspects, kicking, catching, hand passing, running, tackling etc. and the game goes for 2 hours with some players running as much as 20km in a game.

AFL is by far, in the top ten most toughest of the sports. Not only are you constantly being beaten harder than any other ball games, such as american football or rugby, but you have to endure this for a 80 minutes game non stop. And if that isn't enough, almost all football players have lost teeth, so many concussions, many broken bones, and other injuries you wouldn't normally see on another games pitch (maybe ice hockey). On top of that, the field is a lot larger, requires ridiculous endurance, and you need to run faster than a cheetah ffs. You need to be constantly aware, you can't hold the balll for too long, even if tackled, and you must be as quick as possible in order to not be tackled down. Also, a game can be turned around within a quarter, as the scoring system benefits burst of goals. And to top it off, you need to be playing in all weather conditions. Whether is rain, hail, winds with high speeds, or unbearable heat, you need to still be playing. This is undoubtedly one ...more

Yeah not really seen much and very small market, Syd Canberra Queensland are NRL states, So bout half of the country has their sport (AFL) and other half is NRL. But I think AFL is the hardest game to play in the world.. you have so have so many skills to be good at it and the injuries they get, I'm guessing, are the most of any sport.. I dunno about other sports but a little slip and doing your Knee is 1 year out of the game, full reco, if you break a bone anywhere on your leg (I think foot is the worst) then youll be trying to get it fixed, it might take like 2 years or more to fix it, or people just retire.. so basically you can take massive damage to anywhere on your body, and the way that they attack the ball is like American football, or more but with no padding what so ever

15 Mixed Martial Arts Mixed martial arts is a full-contact combat sport that allows the use of both striking and grappling techniques, both standing and on the ground, from a variety of other combat sports and martial arts.

Anyone who says this isn't the hardest doesn't do MMA. If you want to actually be good, you'll want to learn to effectively use at least one striking martial art and one grappling martial art, but likely more. You have to be in good shape for sure, and it requires much skill, endurance, speed, and finesse. MMA isn't a game like most sports here, it shows the pinnacle of what humans can do in martial combat against an opponent trained to take you out. Rules are not nearly as strict, you can fight any way you want besides a few illegal strikes. This makes it very unpredictable as to what your opponent can and can't do.

I have been training Karate Kyokushin for 7 years and I have to say this should be higher on the list! MUCH higher! Not only do you need to be strong, you need to be quick, fast, precise, have good reaction, stamina, cardio, discipline and focus! You have to be able to take hits, kicks, and a bunch of different combos and grabs. You have to keep yourself up, while also focusing on what you are doing, what the other person is doing and what both of you are going to do next. I could go on, and that's just the fighting! You also have all the techniques you have to master and know the names of, where to strike and where to block. One wrong placed punch and who lose your arm! And then we have the katas... A series of techniques and stances, which can be really painful and difficult to stand still in and not move one bit, combined and put together to create one long sequence that you have to remember and get exactly right. One wrong and you mess up the whole thing! Let's not forget about ...more

Really? I'm in Taekwondo and you surely need a lot of personal abilities in order to master it for teaching or competitive level. It also has a combination of gymnastics. Martial Arts deals with the connection of body, mind and spirit. You have to be focussed and not many people are. You take in Karate, Kung fu, Judo or any martial arts for that matter (Not MMA.. Anyone can do that), all of this pure martial arts requires great abilities to advance in your ranks. Otherwise you may find your self getting old in the same belt.
This should be no. 3 at least!

A sport that puts two trained fighter against each other is an insane sport. Your whole purpose is to beat that guy. Whether it be using judo or boxing. MMA fighters do it all. People don't understand how hard it is to be standing up boxing and then be flipped and have to fight on the ground. You are trained in nearly every fighting technique.

16 Freestyle Wrestling

I'm a girl and have been wrestling for seven years now I am only 11 years old. I don't wrestle girls I only wrestle guys. And I am also wrestling at an age group of 13 and 14 year old kids. I go to practice Monday through Friday every week and on weekends I go to wrestling tournaments Sunday is the only day I have off. Every day you have to give it your all or you don't get nothing accomplished. I've tried other sports before like soccer tennis volleyball and basketball but nothing compared to the exhaustion that I get on the mat. I wrestle with people that are two years older than me. During the summer I weigh like 125 but when the rest of the year I only weigh like 100 lbs. We wrestle all year round but don't have any tournaments after July. Then wrestling tournaments start up in October again. Wrestling doesn't only teach how to win a match it teaches discipline and endurance. The only People that think wrestling is easy are the people that have never done it before. Like my coach ...more

Competition cheer leading? Are you serious? How does that make any sense? You are competing, you have to have spot on timing and accuracy. But wrestling you need not only your own accuracy, you have to be precise to a tee. Mess up a move and you're broken, I'm talking metal plates attached to collarbones and potentially life ruining accidents broken. There is no one else to help you, there is no "team" on that mat. Just you and the other guy, 9 minutes, and a lot of pain. If you get hurt you keep wrestling, if you're bleeding you keep wrestling, I've watched guys with broken collarbones continue wrestling because they felt as though they had too. He level of dedication it takes to wrestle is unmatched by any other sport, period.

To add onto the physical challenge of wrestling you have the mental pains too. When someone is taking your arms and bending it behind you in an attempt to make you move and you're not supposed to it takes as much mental strength as anything else in the ...more

Whoever ranked these are nuts. Gymnastics & Wrestling should be at the top - with wrestling ranked higher. These sports require the use of every muscle, mental clarity, speed, balance, agility, flexibility, endurance, strength. Wrestling always has an opponent working against the athlete (as a complete unknown) countering every move, and the wrestler not only has to be aggressive, offensive and defensive - at the same time. A wrestler can't decide to compete only in competitions which support their strengths - he must participate in neutral, defense position, and offense position- (For example: a wrestler may be strong at double leg takedowns, but has to wrestle an opponent who wrestles from knees in neutral - completely taking away his advantage. Whereas, gymnasts choose to compete in their strongest areas. A person who cannot balance on the beams doesn't have to compete & can stick to the floor competition. ) Bars, mats, trampolines - these are all known entities and do not equate ...more

I think wrestling is by far the hardest sport out there. If someone tries it in middle school or something yeah it probably wasn't that hard. As soon as high school and college hits the intensity level goes higher than any other sport I've been a part of or have watched. Not only do we have 2 hour long practices in a 90+ degree room, then there is weight room after to try and maintain some of the muscle that is being lost by constantly cutting 15-20 pounds for at least the three month regular season. Then there is out of practice conditioning if you want to be any good. Which is usually done in full sweats or plastics if you happen to be really overweight that week. Not to mention the regular season occurs during Christmas and thanksgiving so you can't eat anything while you have to watch everyone else feast. Plus wrestling is a year round sport, again if you want to be any good at it. I always wrestled every off season tournament that I could. During football season is have to go to ...more

17 Motorcross

I've done Motocross for many years and I have to say just a little day at the track = SUPER SORE the next day! I've been knocked out twice in races and have had 4 concussions. Motocross is often overlooked by some. But there is a reason why not many know of or do it, because it takes time, patience, balance, and skill. It's a lost art. But for those who have a passion for it and where born into it know what I'm talking about. And others might say taking a big right hook in MMA or Boxing takes more endurance that a 30 minute moto with 2 extra laps are crazy, because they have obviously never sat on a dirk bike, let alone risen one. In my opinion, from a experienced rider. It's the most physically demanding sport in the world. Cheerleading is cool and all but to a contact sport player or a motocross rider its not a sport. When someone talks about a motocross injury its either a broken bone, split something or brain injury. A dance or cheerleading injury is "! I just sprained my angle! ...more

Been riding for about 10 years. To many concussions to count, two broken collarbones, got a handlebar under the helmet, breaking out 4 teeth, have 4 Implants, broken rib, endless fingers, and a compressed spine.. Love the sport still ride every week. Love the sport, can't get enough. By far the hardest sport around is Motocross, I've played all sports too, soccer, American football, lacrosse, baseball, golf, and free-dive aka hold breath and swim around 40 feet down stay there for 30-40 seconds while looking for fish if spearfishing, or lobster for dinner, then come back up... NONE of these are even close to the sport of motocross. The second hardest sport I've done was honestly golf. That damn ball never wants to go to the hole. I mean 400+ yards into a cup with a golf ball? Hard to break Par. Anyways, enough for rambling, motocross is #1! No one that thinks any of these sports above is harder than motocross has never ridden. But we, if you're like me, have done plenty of other ...more

Motocross is not just sitting on a dirt bike and twist the throttle back around a circle. You have to have the balls to jump 100 ft jumps and to ride a turn full throttle leaning the bike and putting pressure on the outside peg. I have been racing motocross for 5 years and I have broken my foot and have bruised my kidney and I've also had three concussions. Yet I still love the sport and my love for the sport will never end. You burn about 1000 calories just being on the bike for 30 minutes. Your arms get so tired that you can't even hold onto the bike anymore. If you think the sport is easy than you get out there and try to hang with us!

A guy told me motocross isn 't that hard, and that baseball is harder, this was my reply.

First off, its Motocross . So you say Motocross isn't a physically demanding sport? Well let me share some knowledge with you. Getting tackled by 250 pounds going 20mph , How about getting hit buy a 235 pound metal bike going 45mph? Constantly squatting down and jumping explosively blocking a shot , How about squatting every time you hit a jump, bringing a 235 pound bike with you by squeezing it with your legs? get tripped on your shin at full speed , Yea that's gotta hurt, but not worse than getting sideways on a bike and taking a handlebar to the gut. Which can slice your insides open like bread. Get hit 200 times in a matter of minutes , what sport is that? Definitely not football, basketball, soccer or wrestling. How about you get hit 200 times in a race with flying rocks traveling at 60 mph cutting your flesh? I have holes in my Jerseys from roost, got scars to prove it to. A dirt ...more

18 Bull Riding Bull riding is a rodeo sport that involves a rider getting on a bucking bull and attempting to stay mounted while the animal tries to buck off the rider.American bull riding has been called "the most dangerous eight seconds in sports." To receive a score, the rider must stay atop the bull for eight seconds with the use of one hand gripped on a bull rope tied behind the bull's forelegs.

Notice how most of these comments are along the lines of "Look you're riding a bull" rather than anything intelligent or well thought out. This is not a sport. Contrary to popular belief, the bull has no desire to kill anyone. The animal is jut scared, stressed, overwhelmed and desperately trying to rid itself of the bucking strap. Yes, you heard right: that "blood-thirsty" bull is scared.
Bull riding is life-threatening, yes, but I wouldn't call it a very hard sport. All you really have to do is hold on tight and there's not much more to it.

Many people have died from bull riding. If you've rode a mechanical bull before, riding an actual bull is like 10x harder. People don't realize how hard it is but here's a little summary: it feels like you're standing on a gravel rode while a massive earthquake is hitting, it throws you around and basically plays with you like you're it's doll.

Well the fact of the matter is that you have thousand pound animal strapped between your legs and your told to hang on. I'm not just saying this because I have seen bad stuff happen, but I was the person that has all the injuries to show it. So I have no idea why they put horse back riding before bullriding. Cause I train horses for a hobby and they aren't that tough to ride.

Like one of the last comments said your on a bull that's allot of muscle just jumping up in the air twisting around trying to get you off it may only be a 8 second thing, but every second after that and before you get out of the arena is life or death.

19 Baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of nine players each who take turns batting and fielding.

I literally decided to vote here simply because people don't understand what makes a sport or a skill difficult. We are talking about playing the game in this list I assume, not how difficult conditioning is. I don't care if a cross country runner conditions all year for their races because absolutely anyone could do it with the correct training. Not everyone can hit a baseball, in fact most kids quit before little league because they are petrified of the ball. Imagine hitting a round ball with a round bat that is breaking and moving at 85+ mph from 60 some feet away. It's almost impossible and that's why even the best players to ever play the game were only successful 3/10 at bats. It is a skill that does not come to people simply from proper conditioning and repetition, it is a skill that some people can do and most people will never be able to do.

How the heck is "competitive baton twirling" ranked higher than baseball? People say "oh there's no running involved and you don't need endurance" yeah well try getting out of a rundown and see how long you last. Also, to hit a baseball at the major league level is described as "a superhuman feat." You have less than half a second to read the movement of the 90+ mph pitch, decide whether to swing or not, start your swing, and connect with the ball within the right time. If you are just 7 milliseconds too soon or late, the ball will sail foul. That is how precise this game is, and I don't understand how it is ranked 43rd.

I can't believe baseball is number 44. Baseball should at least be top five. It isn't that easy to hit a small ball going 95 mph from 60 feet, while your deciding if the pitch is a ball or a strike, and to be in the league you have to hit the ball 400 feet or more. And what about a curve ball dropping 14 inches in a blink of an eye. What about when you take a lead and the pitcher throws to pick you off, you have to notice that in under a second, and if you are a pitcher you can't be too tempted or you'll balk. And what happens when your at third base and a ball is hit 100 mph right at you face, are you going to have to go through multiple surgeries, or are you going to make the split second reaction and catch the ball? I could go on and on, pitching, batting, ground balls, line drives, pop ups, pickles, not letting the pitcher get in your head, getting into the batter's head there is an infinite amount of information that makes baseball one of the hardest sports

What is this! Baseball at 45! Baseball is behind ballet and soccer for crying out loud! While baseball is not physical and many people call it boring it is just because you just don't know how to play. A baseball player has to remember thousands of different situations while in other sports you don't have to remember rarely more than 10. Baseball may not be physical but the amount of mental focus involved is insane! For example, Ty Cobb the player with the best batting average ever, only hit the ball 36% of the time and he made the hall of fame. In other sports do you make the hall of fame for losing 64% of the time? Plus positions like catcher and pitcher take so much focus, skill, and memorization that baseball is easily the hardest sport.

20 Volleyball Volleyball is a team sport in which two teams of six players are separated by a net. Each team tries to score points by grounding a ball on the other team's court under organized rules.

People don't actually relize how hard volleyball actually is. Mentally and physically! People will just be like " ooo like hitting a ball over the net is just so scary and requires mental strength" people who say that have never played competitive volleyball before. You are under so much pressure not to mess up during a whole hour or more long game. Everyone must be in the exact right position at the exact right time or you could lose the game. The passers must get to the ball and possibly run across the court in under 3 seconds. And not only that you but must decide how you will hit the ball. Will you set it? Will you pass it? Will you dive for it? And you must decide how hard you should hit it, how high, and where too. And again you must do all this and get to the ball in under 3 seconds. Then the setter must get to the ball, get a perfect set up to the hitter all while trying to make your set competition even or ot could be an illegal hit. Then they must decide what type of set to ...more

Yeah volleyball does take a lot of skill, and is very difficult I understand that. If people want to say skill wise it's one of the harder sports, that is probably true. But the work and pain this sport requires is nothing compared to other sports. I've played sports where my legs are in pain, and I can barely breath, and mentally and physically I am in pain. Volleyball does not require suffering through pain to be successful.

Volleyball is extremely difficult especially competitively. This sport is a complete mental game. Once some one gets in your head your cracked and the game is over. You have to think about everything your doing in fast paces. Where your supposed to be when there hitting. How high your platform should be when your passing. How much leg muscle you should use to push a hut. Foot work is different in passing, setting and hitting. You have to master every piece of volleyball to succeed. Plus conditioning. I've ran track and I think I do more running and conditioning at a volleyball practice then I did in track. I practice for 4 and a half hours every Saturday. Just to prepare me for an all day tournament. You don't see swimmers swimming for 6 hours or any other sport play 6 games in a day! So volleyball is extremely hard because it's a physical endurance sport and a mental sport.

Honestly this is pathetic. Whoever made this list has never played volleyball. There is no way in a million years that competitive cheer is ranked higher. Like all they do is through a 60 pound girl with the help of 2+ people. While we volleyball players through ourselves on the floor while Making a perfect pass and having to get up in the matter of what...3-5 seconds? I will fight to prove to people that volleyball is all most a life threating sport. When people hear volleyball they most likely think of gym volleyball when you practice under serving that is nothing like an actual game. It should be at least the top five if not higher.

21 Cycling

I do Cycling myself, I also played inline hockey, water polo, swimming and tennis, if I were to put these sports into an order from the hardest to the easiest it would be: 1. inline hockey 2. Water polo 3. CYCLING 4. Swimming and 5. tennis. It is a sport were you need a lot of stamina and be exercised very well, you always have to push yourself to keep up and have a very good technique or else you have nearly no chance in keeping up with others. My heart rate sometimes goes to 200 beats per minute and I am very experienced! Also it is not to sit a lot at the pc or desktop because you can get a lot of cramps when in a race or training, I think this sport should deserve a vote and be in the top 15 at least!

Over 100 miles at over an average speed of 25mph for 7 days then have a day off then do it for another 7 days have a day of then again another 7 days and this is just one race in the season. People might think their just riding a bike but it's the toughest sport just for the endurance and just how hard it is on the cyclists bodies. Yes there are tough sports like rugby, ice hockey boxing where physical contact is part of the sport but the matches/bouts last a short period of time compared to a cycle race and their not expected to do it all again the next day.

Cycling an extremely difficult sport. My brother and sister are both cyclists. My brother is an international however. Training consists of mental and physical attributes. Mental training is preparing yourself to realise that there will always have an obstacle in your way, doesn't matter what sport, also mental training is having your mind set to doing you best, putting 150% or more all the way. Physical training is preparing your actual body. You must have upper body strength and most important lower body strength, legs. Physical training consists of a lot of leg work and working on endurance whether you are a endurance rider or sprinter endurance is very important in cycling. In sprinting you have to keep at a certain speed for a length of time in some events and then find the strength in you to go at a higher speed and keep accelerating more and more until you cross that finish line. I would personally categories cycling as one of the top 20 hardest sports because I know for a fact ...more

I have participated in most sports. I've found that continually cycling on a daily basis is tough on your body. And when the professional athletes are not able to take ibuprofen or other medication for pain. If they crash or have muscle pain they have to work through it for days on end. My hat is off to the professional cyclist.

Definitely one of the toughest sports, a sport of mental and physical attrition.

22 Cross Country

Xc is so physically demanding and takes forever to get used to. I feel bad for the 5- or 6-year-olds whose parents make them run this sport even though they can't stand it. I know a lot about this sport and if you ask me that is a cruel thing that should count as child abuse. I've done it for over 5 years now, and I just started enjoying it, which takes forever. You're running up and down hills, through extreme weather late in the season, and through the most mentally challenging moments of your life. Speaking of the weather, it takes NOTHING for them to cancel races. Last year We had nationals and it had stormed the night before, so the field was muddy, the following cold front wind was insane, and the wind chill went from the 50's to the single digits. Guess what? Another storm came in and our race got called back because of HAIL, and they STILL didn't cancel it. All they did was postpone it another 30 minutes. Then there was this other time when a TORNADO touched down in my town, ...more

People always say cross country isn't that hard. "All you do is run, it's pretty simple". Well that running includes mental and physical strength. You have to commit so much to this sport. I have to eat healthy for 3 months and watch the rest of my family eat junk. I have to wake up at 6PM during the summer to go to camps and then run 4 miles. Do you get tired from running a mile in PE? Well for us 3 miles is an easy run. The pain that you experience during training and running races is incredibly hard to get past. Even when you want to give up you have to push through the pain. Runners are actually very strong because most people don't do this sport because they are not strong enough to get through the pain. So if anyone wants to tell me that Cross country isn't a sport, go try and run 3-5 miles early in the morning. Go see how it feels when your legs are on fire and you can barely breath.

Oh please. Do you wake up at five in the morning and go to cheer practice? Even the horses are asleep by then! How far is an easy run for you? Because for us, it's three miles. We don't stop. Ever. We push through the pain, the blood, the sweat. We don't have a routine to practice. You think running is easy? If your stride is messed up, you pull and fracture must led and bones, you need knee replacements. If you're under-prepared for a race, you won't make it. You have to train all year round. This isn't about scheduled practices, it's about getting up early before school by yourself, and pushing yourself to do better, to strive for a better time. Your routine is two minutes? Two minutes can make a huge change. Two minutes of hard work doesn't compare to 45. We push. We give it our all. You can't go home and eat all the junk food you want. You have to eat healthy and keep your body clean. There's no break. No bench, no stop. You can't have water while you practice. You throw up, the ...more

I don't know why everyone is bashing other sports? Why even compare your sport to others? It is what it is. All I know is that cross country is hard. Like deathly hard. There have been times during a race that I've actually wished my leg would break so I could stop. I have honesty never went through as much pain as what I have during races. It's a god awful pain that you wouldn't understand unless you went through it. There is no way to explain that distinct pain you start to feel after mile one. It gets exponentially worse and you've still got multiple miles left. Like I said, I'm not going to compare cross country to other sports because I haven't done them. But I can say, without a doubt, that cross country is as hard as it gets. It literally requires your 100%. Most people don't grasp the meaning of 100%. That is it. Every drop of energy you have to give. You CANNOT exceed 100%. It is impossible. If you have 10 marbles in a bag you can't take 11 out of the bag. 10 marbles is all ...more

23 Long-distance Triathlon

I don't think most of you have even done a twelve hour race before? Swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles, run 26.2 miles, and then brag for the rest of your life. Not the average Joe can do one. The Ironman Triathlon is the toughest race in the world. Often called the hardest day in sport. It is not a sport for the weak minded. After a while, the body shut downs and the only thing keeping you moving is your mind. With high drop out rates, many question if they could even finish after racing a few hours into the race. Nutrition and hydration is key to a great race. This sport combines three tough sports into a monster challenge.

I don't understand how this is #27. I've been looking at various pages on difficult sports, and most "experts" seem to think that specific aspects of a sport is what make it hard (such as coordination, technique etc). NO. You automatically learn those things from being in that sport. You adapt. You can be the best basketball player, but be the worst in something else. Difficulty is NOT equal to practice.
What makes a sport hard is how hard you have to push your body and mind to the abosolute limit, to even compete. The foundation of all sports is in the Triathlon. I have done all 3 sports at a competitive level, and there is nothing like pushing yourself until you are going to faint or puke. You don't get that in other sports. Its not about practice, its about how hard it is for a body.
If you give anyone (fit) a (fair) amount of time (years) they can master any sport, just based on practice. On sports like triathlon, you don't get that. You have to have a superhuman body and ...more

It is beyond my belief that people believe that a long distance triathlon (or ANY triathlon for that matter) is ranked 20th overall. I know it does not receive as much media attention because other, more "exciting" sports are what the fans want to watch, but this is VERY hard. You have to be almost insane to do this sport. Those of you who were complaining about lactic acid, having to compete (or practice) several hours a day, well, tack on more than twice what you were complaining about, and you've got a long distance triathlon. 13, 14, 15, 16 hours straight of excruciating physical activity. 2.4 miles of swimming, ONE HUNDRED TWELVE (112) miles of biking (usually takes 5-6 hours) and then a marathon (26.2 miles) on top of it. Marathons themselves are an extreme showing of physical activity. Just saying, if this sport received more media attention, it would be #1 for sure. Inhuman levels of endurance and speed. The people that compete in these are the best athletes in the world. All ...more

This is not an easy sport. If swimming is second on the list then this must place higher up than 20th as this consists of swimming and cycling and running. You have to master three sports, three different techniques- all muscles groups are used. It is mentally excruciating, whether it be long distance or short distance. You push yourself to the absolute limit every time you go and train. I, as a 15 year old girl, have puked at training various times due to the physical barriers I have crossed.

24 Rowing

Either school or crew, pick your poison. Crew has practices year round. All days of the week. Even the mornings before school. It's too cold outside to run? Get on the Ergometer. It's raining and you're freezing? Put on a jacket and launch your boat. Your hands hurt? 2k test. Your legs are cramping and you're on the edge of blacking out? Keep taking water and keep rowing. If you stop, you lose the race. No lie. Crew is a lifestyle. Unlike other conventional sports where people play for fun and pleasure, an athlete must absolutely love crew in order to keep on working. Without the slightest but out doubt, an athlete can bring down his team and in turn, lose the race. It's much different than shooting a ball in a basket, or hitting a ball with a racket. It's so much different, and so much more. There's more to this sport than meets the eye. This sport is a way of life. So stop complaining about face masks, flat balls, or rained out fields. Put down those protective pads, that bat and ...more

Rowing is so much harder than 13TH! Really this sport should be way further up on this list. And really! I agree with the other people here cheerleading and sports like that have NOTHING on rowing. Try the early mornings, the EXTREMELY HARD trainings where you want to vomit because you can barely see anything anymore it is tilting so much- you are that dizzy and out of breathe AND EVERY muscle in your body KILLS. This is not an easy sport and it has a lot of technique, hard work and between the cost, early mornings, and amount of trainings it should be so much further up on the list. Plus like what the others have said trying to keep in time perfectly with the other people and making sure you don't let them down, so racing your hardest no matter how much you wish you could stop or you could take a break! You have to keep going meaning it is a lot more demanding then anything ESPECIALLY cheerleading.

There is nothing harder than rowing because since it is a sport that works all of your body, you have the ability to put out all the energy you have available and that is what I train for 5 hours a day 6 days a week, and I am just a high school rower. Also, in motocross, breaking legs, undergoing surgery, and "surviving concussions" doesn't make you brave nor a good athlete, it only means that you have broken your leg, undergone surgery, and had concussions. The thing about rowing is that when you want to give up, you can't and you can't even think about thinking about wanting to give up because if you do then you wont have the ability to be focused on making each part of the stroke perfect. Trust me I have done almost every sport on this list, and as soon as I rowed for the first time I was amazed at how difficult and addictive it was.

Rowing is definitely harder than Cross Country or Figure Skating, endurance sports. With any race sport like those, you can go at your own pace if you are getting close to your breaking limit, but in a rowing eight, you cannot stop if you are in pain or else the whole crew goes down. So you have to keep going.

And Horseback Riding and Motocross, while causing a lot of pain, does not build much muscle. It doesn't mean a sport is particularly difficult if you're scared of being thrown and breaking something, it means you can take a high amount of pain.

Any athletes of these other sports should try a 2k test, then say that their sport is hardest. And a girl definitely made this list. Competition Cheerleading? Please.

25 Hurling

Hurling is not the most physically demanding sport in the world but is the fastest and most skilful sport by far. Epically for goalkeepers. The average shot from about 25 yards away can exceed speeds of 100mph. So the goalkeeper must protect an 80sq foot goal with a piece of wood that's 5 inches wide at the widest part, and keep the sliotar out of the goal. Plus his only protection is a weak plastic helmet.

Very tough game - at the lower levels you don't need to be especially fit (like pretty much all sports) but at elite level you need to be extremely fit. It also requires fantastic coordination and physical strength.

Or this one - where an Irish hurler traded places with a Baseball player to see how the skills of the sport contrasted:

The whole programme is very interesting if anyone has time to watch it all! Most important thing to remember about elite Hurlers is that they are amateur sportsmen. They work full time at different jobs (teachers, sales, etc.) The most important thing to remember about elite Hurlers is that they are amateur sportsmen. They work full time at different jobs (teachers, sales, etc.)

Extremely tough sport. Carrying a hurl all through the game, avoiding guys who hit you as hard as they can, while trying to hit a ball smaller and heavier than a tennis ball

It's almost impossible, e to avoid being shouldered to the ground, getting hit with a Hurley. It takes lots of commitment and is played with a love for the game

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