As millions descend on London for the ‘Greatest show on earth’ we propose a new demonstration sport. It’s the perfect test for the physical challenges of modern life in London – a true celebration of human endeavor in the the realms of baggage, luggage and transport.
What the disciplines be and how wold you score it though? Total of Kilos per kilometer travelled? Number of bags carried? Number of items crammed into a suitcase? We take a light-hearted look at the disciplines of the lifestyle games…
Baggage. It’s a pain, so there’s all sorts of paraphernalia to try and make life easier: trolleys, follow-me cases with handles and wheels, ergonomic back systems – even ride-on luggage for the kids. With the London 2012 Olympics underway and transport being a major issue, we’ve cooked up a suggestion for a new demonstration sport with three key disciplines of the competition…
So settle into your seats… Ladies and Gentlemen, the Tribaglon is about to commence in the main stadium…
Event 1 – ‘Kilo-Metre’ – is a combination of weight lifting versus track athletics. It’s game of strategy as much as brawn where you need to push yourself to the limit – but know precisely where the limit is.
The objective is to cover the furthest distance with the heaviest weighted suitcase. A Decathlon style scorecard awards points for both distance and weight on an exponential scale. The overall score is the two added together. Travel a long way but don’t carry much and you’ll score highly for distance – but get a low score for weight. Conversely carry a very heavy weight over a short distance and your overall score will be lower. The strategic skill is to understand one’s maximum limits to score in both.
This event suits athletes who have everything: supreme physical strength and immense stamina. Bite off more than you can chew in distance or weight though – and you won’t perform to your optimum.
Event 2 – Tube Door – Tube Door is about speed and agility. The competition is run over a straight 50m with a pair of sliding doors across each lane at the finish line. Competitors must carry a standard 2 backpacks and a holdall (a great opportunity for a sportswear manufacturer as ‘Official Partner’).
The objective is to make it through the sliding doors before they close. In early heats the doors will stay open longer and as the event develops the time they stay open is reduced – thereby narrowing the field. In a similar climax to the high-jump, pole vault and long-jump the competition is left with the most elite athletes. In the same way a high-jumper can choose their target height, so the ‘Tribaglete’ can choose their door closing time. The victor is the athlete who gets through the doors with all bags intact and in the shortest successful time.
Dropping any of the bags results in instant disqualification as does reaching the doors after they have closed. ‘Squeezing through’ the doors as they close is allowed – reflecting common practice on London’s Tube.
Of course, the stadium crowd are encouraged to shout “Mind the closing doors, please” as athletes approach the finish line and the doors begin to close.
Event 3 – Airport Trolley Dash – airport trolleys hold a unique place in our hearts. With all the handling prowess of a plate of porridge, anyone who has ‘steered’ (and we use the term lightly) a fully laden baggage trolley will appreciate the art in navigating safely from set-down to check-in.
So – what would the event entail? Think steeple chase. A 400m course, one circuit of the athletics track, with a series of obstacles to navigate. The winner is the competitor who completes the course first.
Competitors begin in lane at the staggered starting block – without their trolleys. At the 100m mark identical airport Trolleys are parked in lane alongside a 3x suitcases set (another great sponsorship opportunity for a luggage company) in 10, 20 and 30 kilo weights. The first obstacle for Athletes is to pack the luggage on to their trolley and set off to complete the rest of the course. Over the next 100m the athletes can merge out of lane to take the optimum line.
Next up – ‘the dog-leg’ at the 200m mark two rows of departure lounge seating benches are placed across the track blocking lanes 2 to 7 – but with room between them for 3 trolleys. Competitors have to move out to lane 8 and make a hard left to navigate across the track between the benches and a hard right to rejoin the track on the inside of the beginning of the second curve in lane 1. Then it’s a 150m push round the curve and on to the finishing straight… and if you’ve ever tried to steer a trolley round a curve…
At 350m the last obstacle – ‘Check in’ – competitors have to stop and unload their baggage, and park their trolley – before racing for the line…
Athletes will require excellent coordination and anticipation as well as strength and stamina. It truly is the blue riband event. We wonder if Usain Bolt would be interested once he’s done with boring old running.
So there you have it. A new form of Lifestyle Games for London in 2012. Who knows, it could even be the new Total Wipeout.
Of course, millions of visitors to the London Olympics will be running similar gauntlets in their travels to and from the Olympic venues. But there won’t be any gold medals. It doesn’t have to be that way though… a storage luggage locker with ABC Selfstore could be a great solution if you are looking to travel lighter. And our service is worthy of the top podium step.