Have you been counting down the days to the Summer Olympics as we have? I can’t wait for Friday night to see the Opening Ceremonies of the London Games.
In order to get into the sporting spirit properly, I’ve gathered up some supplies for a DIY Decathlon — ten events, each adding points to a cumulative score to determine the winning decathlete. Of course, our competition is structured a little differently than the Olympic Decathlon. Rather than only including track and field events, I’ve split the competition into two categories: Pool vs. “Track and Field” Events.
Day One — Pool Events include:
1. Diving. Make your best, most creative jump from the low diving board. My husband S and I will award points solely based on style.
2. Water Endurance. How long can you hold your breath underwater without passing out/involving a lifeguard? Timed event.
3. Water Gymnastics. Best of three moves in the water, including but not limited to flips, handsprings, and handstands. Points will be awarded after a brief consultation of the judges (again, me and S).
4. Water Slide Sprints. Another timed event to determine the fastest one to speed down a water slide of the judges’ choosing.
5. Longest Float. Who can do the back float the longest without interference from other swimmers and/or competitors? A timed event.
A side note: all of our pool events are going to be performed at a public pool. Therefore, in order to not embarrass the competitors, the events will only be held when the pool is not crowded and none of the competitors’ friends/classmates/acquaintances are in attendance. Got to preserve the dignity of the athletes, you know.
Day Two — Track and Field Events include:
1. Tennis Ball Bounce. Who can “self-volley” a tennis ball on their racket for the longest time without it touching the ground? The winner is determined by the highest count of consecutive bounces.
2. Jump Rope Endurance. This event has two separate stages: longest time jumping rope forwards and longest time jumping rope backwards. Winner will have the highest average time of the two stages.
3. Tennis Ball Shot Put. In an attempt to even out the height/age differences, all competitors will lie down on the ground, eyes closed, and throw a tennis ball at a target (white plastic dishpan, shown above) 10 feet away. Closest to target after three attempts wins. In the event that two or more athletes hit the target, a “sudden-death” throw-off will commence.
4. Beanbag Toss Tourney. Using the bags game (pictured to the right), the tourney runs as follows: preliminaries consist of the younger two competitors playing each other while the oldest competitor faces off against me. Winners of the prelim rounds play each other to determine the overall winner of the event.
5. Marathon. With Louie as the “Pace Puppy,” the athletes will race back and forth across the backyard. Last one standing is the winner. For the record, my bet’s on Lou.
And what are the decathletes playing for, you may ask? A gold medal? A bouquet of flowers? The national anthem piped in his/her room?
Nope. At the conclusion of our DIY Decathlon, all our athletes and judges will enjoy a feast with the overall winner determining what’s on the menu. The meal will conclude with ice cream sundaes all around — the type of ice cream and toppings also chosen by the winning decathlete.
Let the Games begin!