James Marshall's Sports Page

I don't play sports as much as I used to, but I still have an interest in some and try to watch them on TV. Here are a few of my sports-related interests: sumo, martial arts, tai chi in particular, Australian rules football, professional wrestling, and other sports. Note: the new navigation image for this page was chosen as a way to more clearly represent "sports" than the old one, so some sports here aren't in the image.

Sumo

Sumo is the traditional Japanese style of wrestling. The competitors tend to be very heavy since there's no weight limit. Though the matches are usually over in a matter of seconds, they can still be quite exciting to watch. The Nihon Sumo Kyokai (this is their English page) hosts the official grand sumo home page, so it's a good starting point for information on sumo. You may be able to find some videos of tournament matches at NHK World TV's Grand Sumo Highlights page. The web board at SumoForum.net serves as an alternative to the mailing list. Stats and results from the highest two divisions, makuuchi or makunouchi and juryo, along with other related info are available at some web sites like Bandey's Sumo Site and detailed results of the basho, which contains all the results for all divisions. Other sites I used to link to here have apparently shut down, but if I find some other good sources of information, I'll add them.

Martial Arts

I have a general interest in martial arts and have taken a few classes in northern Shaolin long fist kung fu with a college club that's no longer around, but you can get a little information about the style from Northern Shaolin Long Fist Family. A nice, general message board for martial arts discussion is MartialTalk.com. The CyberKwoon.com board isn't bad either. I also find mixed martial arts (MMA) interesting to watch since it includes factors of many different individual martial arts. Generally, I watch Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) programs on on SpikeTV, but sometimes watch World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) on Versus.

Tai Chi

This is a martial art, but I decided to give it its own section. For some starting information, you can try Wikipedia's tai chi chuan page. In the martial arts classes I took (mentioned above), I learned some Yang style tai chi. Some of the websites I've found with good information include Cloud Hands: Taijiquan and Qigong, TheTaiChiSite with its wealth of links, Erle Montaigue's Taijiworld has good information and a number of free downloads (on another site now), Reinhard's Tai Chi Collection and the Tai Chi Archives at Key Arts Media both contain some good articles. Taiji.de (English) has a bunch of forms in videos and pictures, and Inside Wudang has some videos as well. For something cute, take a look at the Yang form as ASCII art. I also copied out a lot of various tai chi forms from the books I own with a little bit of information about each. If you're looking for a list of posture names for a form, take a look and see if I have it in one of my books.

Australian Rules Football (Footy)

Personally, I enjoy this more than American football (aka gridiron), and the Australian Football League (AFL) web site is the main source of information about the game. There's a lot more action because the rules of the game are designed to keep play going; there are no time outs or huddles or anything like that. It's very athletic and pretty exciting with the occasional spectacular play. Despite its sometimes chaotic appearance, there are indeed rules :) and the basic concept of the game isn't all that hard to understand. To paraphrase an older commercial, it's got a little bit of basketball, football, soccer, and a whole lot of action. ;) They have a section called AFL Explained with some interesting information, as well as the full Laws of the Game 2011 and the Spirit of the Laws 2010, both as PDF files. You might prefer to read this FAQ on the game instead though. Aussie rules is also catching on in other countries and good sources of information on it in the US are the Australian Football Association of North America (AFANA) and the United States Australian Football League (USAFL) web sites; my local area club is the Baltimore Washington Eagles. A few other web sites I found useful include William's AFL Footy Page, Dag's Footy Site, RealFooty, and Footy Forecaster. You can find some interesting information and tipping comps at Monash University's Probabilistic Footy Tipping Competition web site. If you're into tipping competitions, they're pretty easy to find. Try looking at some of the links on the pages above, or join the AFL's Tipping Competition (I usually do every year, but I never do that great). The AFL fixture shows the full schedule for the year, but since the URL changes periodically, I'm not linking to it here -- you can find it on the main AFL web site. Here in the US it can be hard to get footy on TV, but fortunately for me it's on the MHz Networks stations that are available on cable in my area.

Professional Wrestling

My brother got me into this a long time ago when he started getting into it, and yes, I know the basic deal behind it, but it's still entertaining. It's also popular in Japan and Mexico in somewhat different forms/styles, but I don't know too much about it in either place. I rarely watch it anymore, but I used to try to follow Raw and Smackdown by the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), the iMPACT show by Total Nonstop Action (TNA) Wrestling, Lucha Libre AAA, and CMLL. I tend to prefer the last two, which are both Mexican lucha libre shows, because I find them to be generally more athletic/acrobatic and interesting to watch. I'm sure there are many web sites for more information about professional wrestling in the US, but I'll just point to one I found interesting: Pro-Wrestling Title Histories. If you prefer amateur wrestling, you can start finding more information about it from this Wikipedia article.

Other Sports

While I generally don't play sports myself, I do enjoy watching various sports now and then, mainly on television. These include Major League Baseball games, typically post-season games for my favorite team, and NCAA/college basketball, primarily March Madness games when my alma mater's men's team is involved. I watch some other things as well, and may add them at a later date, but these are probably the main ones outside of the ones mentioned above.


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James Marshall (e-mail me)
http://www.jmarshall.net/

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