Have You Heard of The Office Chair Grand Prix? A Japanese Decade Long Tradition

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Japan’s Office Chair Grand Prix

For over a decade Chairs Swivel Around The Streets For A Tasty Prize

On your marks, get set, SWIVEL! The Japanese are known for quirky competitive games, and the annual office chair race held in the city of Hanyu is one of them.

This swivel chair race is also known as the ‘Isu’ Grand Prix first started in 2009 by Tsuyoshi Tahara. Formula racing inspired the event, and the race comprised three-person teams. Each participant competes for the most laps around a 200-metre course.

To put it simply this hell-scape of caster disasters was created to test one’s grit.

The Evening Standard interviewed participants of this race and found just how grueling it can be on one’s body.

Satoru Taguchi assembled his squad with fellow fathers of his kid’s school, stated: “I was tricked into doing it. My body is badly sore.”

First place of the 2019 Office Chair Grand Prix went to Team Kitsugawa Unyu from Kyoto, Japan. The first place prize was 90 kilograms (198 pounds) of white rice, which the winners were too tired to pick up and respect from their coworkers.

Other Games With Chairs

Maybe they are just kids games, but their pretty nostalgic.

Musical Chairs

One classic game of elimination that comprises players, music, and chairs, the defining factor of this game is having one fewer chair than players.

When the song stops, whichever player is still standing is eliminated. With each round, a chair is removed, and the game goes on until only one player remains.

Chair Rally

Two chairs per player. The aim of this game is passing the finishing line without touching the ground.  To win, one chair must be placed in front of the other.

Seven Up! (Arguably A Chair Game)

Also known as “The Heads Up Game” where most group sits with their head down, thumbs up, and eyes closed. While seven players go around the room, secretly pressing their thumbs down.

At the end of each round, the seated participants guess which of the seven pressed their thumb down. If guessed correctly, the seated person switches roles with one of the seven pickers.

Japan Office Chair Grand Prix
Odawara Tokaido Gojusan Tsugi Katsushika Hokusa 1806, CC0 Public Domain Designation

Related Questions

Helpful Info About Office Chair Racing & Some F.A.Q. Answered
Clearly you never seen a moment of this gnarly event!

This 200-metre course gets swiveled apart by people racing backwards on office chairs. These pieces of furniture were not designed to be raced with and maintaining balance can be difficult. This is true when maneuvering turns, helmets are mandatory to avoid head injury.

Clearly you never watched a minute of this gnarly event!

The Original Japanese Office Chair Grand Prix (Isu-1) hosts around 165 participants making up 55 teams that have 3 drivers. The trending event now has ten different races conducted annually throughout Japan.

There are just so many factors, but it depends on the driver.

Some prefer lightweight with no back rest and just a seat pad. Other drivers enjoy the arm-rest for added control and the back seat for comfort. IMHO I’d go for a swivel stool to get the best of both worlds.

Are they safe? - No, but they look fabulous!

Twitter user @P00DI3PI3 posted an image with the caption “cruising past the haters like.” The tweet went viral within five days and received over 62,000 likes and

Office Chair Roller Skates
Image Provided by Knowyourmeme

19,000 retweets.

It should be upbeat, timeless, one for all ages, and from all walks of life.

The Ventures, "Walk Don't Run" comes to mind. It has a classic 1960's surfer vibe and the title of the song speaks for itself. #MusicalChairMusic

SOURCES

Joshi, Shamani. “People in Japan Are Racing Office Chairs on the Streets to Win Free Rice.” Vice, 12 June 2019, www.vice.com/en_in/article/3k3je8/people-in-japan-are-racing-office-chairs-on-the-streets-grand-prix-to-win-free-rice.

Shimbun, The Kyoto. “Japan’s Office Chair Endurance Race Aims to Win Popularity Overseas.” Kyodo News+, 24 Jan. 2020, english.kyodonews.net/news/2020/01/f8d1c6757cd7-japans-office-chair-endurance-race-aims-to-win-popularity-overseas.html.
 
White, Megan. “Hundreds Race around Streets of Japan on Office Chairs.” Evening Standard, 10 June 2019, www.standard.co.uk/news/world/hundreds-wheel-around-streets-of-japan-in-office-chairs-for-unique-endurance-race-a4163166.html. 
 
“Office Chair Roller Skates.” Know Your Meme, knowyourmeme.com/memes/office-chair-roller-skates.
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Claude

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Hello, My name is Claude and I enjoy sitting comfortable. Research into what separates the good from the bad, in the matter of chairs started when I made a new years resolution to have better posture.

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