Wife carrying, Finland

Wife carrying, Finland © Peter Oelschlaeger

Wives at the ready! This quirky event involves men carrying their brides over a 253.5m obstacle course. The championship started in Sonkajärvi, Finland, in 1992 but its exact origins are unknown.

Locals say it started as a joke, mocking an old tradition in which men carried off would-be spouses from the village. Others claim it was a ploy to promote tourism.

It now features in the Guinness Book of Records and worldwide competitions draw thousands.

Men traditionally carry wives ‘Estonian style’: upside-down with legs around the shoulders and arms around the waist. Women must weigh over 49 kilos (carrying weights if necessary).

Fear not if you have no wife/the lady can be anyone’s as long as she’s over 17.

Written by - Photo by Peter Oelschlaeger

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