Quidditch should be an Olympic sport
Yeah, it’s from Harry Potter, but it’s still a real sport
According to the IOC, there are a number of factors that determine whether a sport is suitable for the Olympics: youth appeal, universality, popularity, good governance, respect for athletes, and respect for the Olympic values of friendship, respect and excellence.
We could argue that no sport currently in the Olympics meets all these criteria – but there’s one which isn’t which meets them all. Yes, I’m talking about muggle Quidditch.
This fast-paced and fast-growing sport deserves a spot in the Olympics. In the last 11 years, it’s gone from fictional pastime of the wizarding world of Harry Potter, to niche university hobby, to highly competitive, international sport.
The World Cup has just been and gone, seeing the Australian Dropbears make history and beat Team USA to the gold.
Quidditch is inclusive to all genders, which makes it incredibly unique and extremely progressive. And it’s still 100 per cent full contact, and fully brutal.
The inclusivity of the sport extends far beyond simply the gender rule (maximum of four players of the same gender on pitch at any one time); the Quidditch community as a whole is one of the most welcoming, friendly and supportive that you’ll ever encounter.
Seriously, everyone is just lovely.
Perhaps more importantly, Quidditch is amazing to play. It’s intense, but incredibly fun. There are, obviously, four different positions (chaser, keeper, beater, seeker), which ensures that there’s something for everyone.
And whether you have any clue what’s going on or not, it’s still exciting to watch. Fun to watch is not something that can be said for every Olympic event – not even all of the televised ones make for good watching, so Quidditch could really liven things up.
And as far as youth appeal goes, it’s predominantly, though not exclusively, played in universities, so that’s basically built in. But more than that, younger children love it too.
Child-friendly Quidditch sessions (Kidditch) are often run by members of the Quidditch community on various occasions, and it’s always a lot of fun for everyone involved.
I’m pretty certain that Quidditch covers most, if not all, of the criteria to be considered for the Olympics, and is bloody awesome to boot – so let’s make this happen for Tokyo 2020.
Photos: Luke Parker