05.12.10 – Try to guess what Finland’s national sport is. If you guessed hockey… you’re wrong. If you google “national sport of Finland” you’ll find your answer, pesäpallo, which is a “bastardized” version of American baseball. Pesäpallo? In all the time I have been in Finland, I have yet see anyone playing pesäpallo.
Now hockey, that’s another story. When I visit my local ice rink, you can bet there will be at least 3 hockey games going on and if you asked, you could probably get another one started like that. Everyone plays it too, boys and girls, fathers and sons, fathers and daughters, you name it. Last time I was at the rink, there was a girl about 5 years old who didn’t have skates, kneeling on the sidelines, batting a puck between to mini hockey sticks the size of spatulas. Finns may have been “born with the skis on,” but when they are christened, they get a hockey stick and a puck.
I don’t know why a country that spends most of the year covered in ice would not choose hockey as there national sport but I’ll tell you one thing, I’m heading to the store to buy a hockey stick.
- Russia finish Finnish “beast” off (rt.com)
- Young Russians chase hockey dream in small-town Ontario (thestar.com)
- 5 Best Hockey Stickhandling Drills (mademan.com)