The game obviously has its origins in the pages of the Harry Potter books, but for we Muggles the real deal began 6 years ago at Middlebury College in Vermont. Now, over 700 different teams exist at high schools and colleges across the country! The grounded version of Quidditch is popular with both wizarding nerds and the more athletic types alike, and can be just as physical as any rugby, lacrosse, or soccer match. Despite being a fantastical game, Quidditch injuries are quite real, ranging anywhere from a broken nose to cracked ribs and a concussion! Concern over the safety of competitors has necessitated more formal regulation of matches, so the International Quidditch Association (yes, it exists) is currently drafting its first-ever referee guidebook and will hold referee training workshops. This evolution of the sport is increasingly important in the face of its ever-growing popularity - the annual Quidditch World Cup last year drew over 20,000 spectators!
19 Astonishing Facts