Pedestrianism was almost the Olympics of the 1850s.

Pedestrianism was one of the most famous sports in the 1850s, almost like the Olympics.

Pedestrianism is a competitive sport in the 19th century, long before you and I were born.

It is basically a sport where one walks for 6 consecutive days to see who can go the furthest distance.

Usually, that is around 450 miles or 724km.

No, it’s not a joke and no, people took it very seriously back then.

It was equivalent to the World Cup finals or Tiger Woods golfing for a championship.

Spectators regularly goes into the ten thousands, paying to watch people walk!

There was corporate sponsorships, snacks served, tickets sold and the competitors were treated like celebrities.

The competitors went around with an entourage of dieticians, manicurist, feet doctors and massage therapists.

Of course with any competition, comes betting.

Rich people were betting voraciously on Pedestrians competing.

Hard to believe that walking can be so popular back then.

But yea, most of the entertainment we deem as cool or fun weren’t really invented back then either.

There was no iPhone or TikTok in the 1850s.

Many of the modern endurance walking and running got the idea from Pedestrianism.

It is just mind-boggling how humans can be so determined to walk hundreds of miles a day for so many days.

It becomes a test for both the mind and body.

And I am not sure which will break first.

So how did Pedestrianism, such a well-known and popular sporting event die off into the 20th century?

Well, we got smarter for one.

Pedestrianism was very dangerous, killing many competitors.

Back then medicine was not as developed, we knew little of endurance sports and the rules and regulations were not fully established.

People literally champagne as they were walking, upon wise advice from their dieticians.

It probably also evolved over time into race-walking, and over shorter distances, to make it safer and easier for the masses.

After all, can you imagine walking 724km for 6 days in a row?

As we look back at our own history, it is amazing how much we have changed in 150 years.

There is so much we can learn from the past.

But more importantly, I cannot imagine spectating and cheering for someone walking, days on end.


#startups #business #startupx #Pedestrianism #success #socialmedia #walking #marathon #olympics #betting #sports #entrepreneurship #strategy #modernsports



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Durwin Ho

Durwin Ho


CEO of StartupX | Web3.0, Crypto, DeFi, NFT Enthusiast |HyperX Sustainability Hackcelerator | Startup Weekend Singapore.