Young boy playing cornhole

Many Americans think of cornhole as a lighthearted pastime played in a lawn, but the game is slowly evolving into a legitimate sport. Professional cornhole is a thing. Two major leagues dominate the landscape: the American Cornhole Organization and the American Cornhole League. The former has stood the test of time after more than 13 seasons, while the latter is young but poised to expand globally soon. Each brand is stacked with competitive players; the best ones already make five-figure prizes in televised tournaments.

It’s no longer crazy to find out where to buy cornhole sets in hopes of becoming a professional athlete yourself. Considering that ESPN and high-profile sponsors like Bud Light are now investing in this niche sport, you can start making serious money playing cornhole now.

However, do you have what it takes to actually compete? Gleaning from respected icons of the sport, Matt Guy and Cody Henderson, here are the qualities that you need to possess to put the beanbag in the hole consistently:

Accuracy

Competing against the best makes each of your tosses counts. Unlike when you’re just playing your drunk uncle or your six-year-old daughter, you have to be precise with your throw. You need to learn the fundamentals and master proven strategies to score points with high accuracy.

You have to practice countless hours to familiarize yourself with the weight of the bag and the distance of the board. Just like in basketball, professional cornhole demands rely heavily on muscle memory to hit your target with great consistency and less effort for long periods.

Endurance

A tournament can last for 12 hours involving walking 10 miles’ worth of distance and tossing beanbags repeatedly in the heat. Professional cornhole isn’t a triathlon, but it’s no walk in the park, either. Your body must be able to endure a ton of stress as it receives punishment from the elements and fatigue.

Focus

Cornhole

Competitive cornhole players are just as psychologically tough as they are physically ready. Boredom can take its toll and affect your concentration. If you let the tedious nature of the game get the best of you, a mentally stronger adversary will make quick work of you. To succeed on the pro level, you ought to be comfortable being in a quiet area for many hours, which is harder than it sounds.

Discipline

If you aspire to be a professional cornhole athlete, you need to lead your life like one. You have to devote time for regular training. Aside from practicing your tosses, you also need to run for miles every day to enhance your stamina. When participating an event, it’s not uncommon to allot more or less 250 hours of practice in six months. Since you probably can’t let go of your primary job, for now, you have to juggle your work commitments, family responsibilities, and cornhole training activities.

Non-spectators still don’t take professional cornhole players seriously, but more and more people will begin to give respect to such athletes soon. Regardless of your current skill level, now is the time to train to reach pro level, get paid generously, and be one of cornhole’s first legends.

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