Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Wife Carrying Contest in Finland

I find this funny and strange but it's actually a sport in Finland. I'm talking about the wife carrying contest in Finland where the prize is the wife's weight in beer.

Despite the humorous aspect of this sport, it actually has deep roots in Finland history. It's supposedly reminiscent of a past in which men courted women by running to their village, picking them up, and carrying them off. The festival originated in the 19th century when it was common practice in Finland to steal women from neighbouring villages.

The objective of the contest is for the male to carry the female through a special obstacle track in the fastest time. The track has two dry obstacles and a water obstacle, about one meter deep. The wife to be carried may be his own, the neighbour’s or he can choose any woman over 17 to be the symbolic wife for the event. Several carrying styles may be used like piggyback, fireman's carry (over the shoulder), or Estonian-style (the wife hangs upside-down with her legs around the husband's shoulders, holding onto his waist). Cool, eh!

2 replies:

Unknown said...

Looks like a fun game! That's awesome!

Dean and Lee Schroeder said...

hello Jhenn, I had fun looking at the pictures, hehehe