Which Sport Is It?

Is it baseball or softball? You've got a bat, a ball, and you're hoping for a home run, but which sport is it? So far you don't know because these sports are similar but they're not the same. A number of sports look alike. How many of them can you tell apart?

Baseball and Softball

Similarities

These popular sports both use a ball, bat, and three bases on a diamond-shaped field. The object is to hit the ball and score a run. The team with the most runs wins.

Differences

Baseball Softball
1. Small, hard ball 1. Large, softer ball
2. 90-foot basepath 2. 60-foot basepath
3. Nine players per team 3. 10 players per team (slow pitch; fast pitch has nine players per team)
4. Overhand pitch 4. Underhand pitch

Biathlon and Triathlon

Similarities

Both are sports made up of more than one event.

Differences

Biathlon Triathlon
1. Made up of two sports - cross-country skiing and rifle shooting 1. Made up of three sports - swimming, running, and bicycling
2. Competitors ski through the woods and stop every five kilometers to shoot at a board with five targets. 2. Competitors swim a distance, then run a distance, then bike until the finish. Distances are not always the same.
3. Fastest time wins. Each missed target adds one minute to your time. 3. Fastest time wins.

Bobsledding and Tobogganing

Similarities

Both are snow sports using sleds.

Differences

Bobsledding Tobogganing
1. Team with fastest time wins. 1. Not competitive
2. Sled mounted on runners to gain speed 2. Long, flat sled curved in front
3. Two-Four people race 3. Two-Four people coast down a hill

Calisthenics and Gymnastics

Similarities

Both require an agile, flexible body.

Differences

Calisthenics Gymnastics
Exercises to promote physical fitness such as: pull-ups, jumping jacks, sit-ups Artistic gymnastics: vault, symmetric bars, balance beams, floor exercises, rings, high bar

Curling and Hurling

Similarities

None except they sound very similar.

Differences

Curling Hurling
1. Played on ice 1. Played on a large, rectangular field
2. Four players per team 2. 15 players per team
3. Players use brooms and a large piece of granite (rock) which is called the stone. 3. Players use a ball similar to a baseball and curved sticks known as hurleys.
4. One player slides the stone down the ice towards a bullseye. Two others sweep the ice to make the stone go faster. 4. Players try to hit the ball into a net (3 points), or just above the net (1 point) using their stick. Or if the ball is off the ground, they can use their hands and feet.
5. The winning team has their stone closest to the bullseye. 5. The winning team scores more points than the losing team.

Field Hockey and Ice Hockey

Similarities

Both are team sports played with a stick. To score, an object must be hit into the opposing goal.

Differences

Field Hockey Ice Hockey
1. Played on a large, rectangular field 1. Played on ice
2. 11 players per team 2. Six players per team
3. Players wear cleats 3. Players wear ice skates
4. Stick with curved end used to hit ball 4. Long-bladed stick used to hit rubber puck

Horse Racing — Thoroughbred, Harness, and Steeplechase

Similarities

In all three, there is a horse running around a track with a jockey (rider) trying to make the horse go faster. The first horse to cross the finish line is the winner.

Differences

Thoroughbred Harness Steeplechase
1. The jockey is on a saddle on top of the horse. 1. The horse is pulling a cart driven by the jockey. The cart is known as a sulky. 1. The jockey is on a saddle on top of the horse.
2. Horses race a certain distance around a flat oval track. 2. Horses race a certain distance around a flat oval track. 2. Horses race around a track that also contains water jumps, ditches, fences, and hurdles.

Horseshoes and Quoits

Similarities

The object of both games is to encircle a short metal pole in the ground called a stake—or get closer than your opponent.

Differences

Horseshoes Quoits
1. Two-four players 1. Any number can play
2. Two horseshoes 2. One iron, rubber, or heavy rope ring

Motocross and Cyclocross

Similarities

Both sports require a bike and race to the finish.

Differences

Motorcross Cyclocross
1. BMX track: smooth, sandy soil 1. Race course: one-third road, two-thirds plowed land, woods, streams
2. Racers jump over mounds 2. Racers ride or carry their bikes

Paddleball and Racquetball

Similarities

These sports take place on a court with up to four walls for play. To win points, the opposing player must fail to return the ball to the front wall before its second bounce.

Differences

Paddleball Racquetball
Uses a perforated paddle with a short handle Uses a strung racquet with a short handle

Table Tennis and Ping-Pong

People often think table tennis and Ping-Pong are different sports, but they are the same. Ping-Pong is the company's trademark for table tennis (as Kleenex is for tissues).

Pool and Billiards

Similarities

Both games are played on a green felt table with a long stick or cue.

Differences

Pool Billiards
1. Two-four players 1. Two players
2. One white (cue) ball, 15 colored and numbered balls 2. One white cue ball, one “spot” white ball and one red ball
3. Cue ball knocks colored balls into six holes, or pockets, on side and in corners of table 3. There are no pockets. Players strike the cue ball and try to hit the other two balls on the table, either directly or by banking the balls off the sides of the table.
4. Points are scored when balls are knocked into the pockets; person or team with the most points wins 4. A point is scored when the cue ball hits one of the object balls, then riccochets and hits the other; person or team with the most points wins

Skiing— Nordic, Alpine, and Freestyle

Similarities

All require skis, poles, and snow. However, many people now enjoy snowboarding (see below). There is Alpine and Freestyle snowboarding but no Nordic snowboarding.

Differences

Nordic cross-country Alpine downhill skiing Freestyle skiing
1. Relatively flat surface: fields or trails in woods 1. Steep mountain or hill slope 1. Steep mountain with moguls (bumps) and an area for snow jumping
2. Quick strides 2. Fast descent from top to bottom 2. Made up of two events - aerials and moguls. Aerials has compeitors doing acrobatic ski jumps. In the moguls competition, racers speed around the moguls to the finish line. Judges determine the winner in each event.

Snowboarding

Snowboarding, part surfing and part skiing, is a very popular winter sport. It requires a board, bindings, and boots. No poles are used.

Skittles and Tenpin Bowling

Similarities

A player rolls a ball down a long alley, trying to knock down pins.

Differences

Skittles Tenpin bowling
1. Even number of players, two-24 1. One-five players
2. Ball or thick, flat disk 2. Ball
3. Nine pins 3. 10 pins

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