You’ve probably never heard of the World Nomad Games, and you’re going to be upset that you’re just now finding out about them.
This year’s games, which kicked off with the opening ceremony on Saturday, take place in Kyrgystan and celebrate the nomadic heritage of the Central Asian nations.
This incredibly dramatic teaser was published before the games, and will give you a good sense of what we’re dealing with:
Forty countries are participating, not all of which have nomadic history — but who could pass up the opportunity to take part in something as awesome as this?
One such country is actually the U.S., which brought a surprisingly large group to participate. Here are just a few incredible things that have taken place since the games kicked off:
Men on fire riding horses
Yep, those are masked men — on fire — riding horses during the opening ceremony. Now that’s how you get people excited for the games (no offense, Gisele).
A horse kicking a man off of another horse
This is apparently a game called Sal Burun. The best part is that this wasn’t even a real event — they just busted out an impromptu game of “knock each other off the horse” while they were waiting for the opening ceremony. Amazing.
A man feeding his eagle
There can’t be much that you can do to make yourself look cooler than this guy. “Oh me? I’m just feeding my golden eagle before the big eagle hunting competition at the World Nomad Games.” Savage.
Fun with goats
The game these men are playing is called Kok Boru, also known as Buzkash. It’s basically a cross between polo and basketball, but instead of a ball they use a decapitated goat carcass. Of course! Not surprisingly, this is the most popular sport at the games. A description of the action from The Guardian:
Taking possession of the goat is a tricky maneuver in which the rider gallops past the carcass and swoops down to grab a leg and pull it up. There follows an almighty horse melee in which punches are thrown, whips fly and the goat is tugged back and forth, before one horseman emerges in a cloud of dust to gallop towards the goal, shaped like a paddling pool, and dunk the goat in to score.
Steven Seagal on horseback in a warrior costume
You know there’s no way Steven Seagal would miss an event like this. While the Olympic Games have presidents and dignitaries in attendance, the World Nomad Games want nothing to do with that nonsense. Seagal is the guest of honor at the games, and made this entrance at the opening ceremony.
A man being dragged by a horse
This isn’t a sport, but why not? Dragging a man by a rope from the back of a horse seems pretty normal in this scenario.
Women shooting bows … upside down … with their feet
These games just can’t get any better — and they don’t end until Thursday.
Why are they burying this after the Olympics? I hereby decree that the World Nomad Games take place in the year between the Summer and Winter Olympics from this day forward.
Kyrgystan 2017 has a nice ring to it.
Wink of the CBS eye to Fox Sports
Source: CBS Sports Headlines / LOOK: The World Nomad Games are a crazier, cooler version of the Olympics