Have You Heard of the World’s Ugliest Sport?

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You might not have heard of a bizarre sport called gurning, but it’s oddly interesting! According to, gurning is “thought to have originated in 1297 at the Egremont Crab Fair in the UK,” and it involves the contests pulling the ugliest faces they can.

As The Mirror further explains, “Contestants have to put their head through a horse collar and ‘snarl like a dog, look savage, distort the countenance’. Those with no teeth have a natural advantage in the contest, because they can move their jaws further up.”

The video below follows Tommy Mattinson, a Guinness World Record holder for winning an amazing amount of gurning competitions. The faces he pulls are very unique, very silly and very ugly! Perhaps the best part of Trans World Sport video begins at 5 minutes and 30 seconds when the champion performs for a dismayed, but fascinated, Queen of England.

Even though it’s referred to as the “world’s ugliest sport,” gurning doesn’t aim to hurt anyone. It’s meant to be entertaining and to uphold an odd tradition. By contorting all of their facial muscles, gurning contestants are celebrating one of the tame, bizarre sports that make up human history.