[ad_1] If you thought rock-paper-scissors (RPS) was just a simple game played during recess or to determine who pays for lunch, think again. For those competing in the national RPS tournament, throwing is serious business.

The World RPS Society states that the game has been played since the Han Dynasty in China, but it wasn’t until the 20th century that it truly became a phenomenon. And in recent years, RPS has taken on a competitive edge. The first RPS World Championship was held in Toronto in 2002, and since then there have been numerous national and international tournaments where competitors can win thousands of dollars in cash prizes.

At the heart of throwing in the big leagues is strategy. While a casual player may just make a random choice, the pros know how to read their opponents. They study their habits, their facial expressions, and body language. They predict what their opponent may choose and then choose their throw accordingly. It’s a psychological game as much as a physical one.

The rules are simple: rock beats scissors, scissors beats paper, and paper beats rock. But within those rules, there are different strategies to employ. Some players may always start the game with rock, hoping that their opponent will start with scissors. Others may switch between the three options to throw their opponent off-balance.

And then there’s the matter of sportsmanship. While it may seem like a silly game, there is a code of conduct to follow. Players must shake hands before and after each match, and they must follow the rules set forth by the tournament officials. Cheating can result in disqualification and even a ban from future tournaments.

Competing at the national RPS tournament is no joke. It takes months of practice and preparation, and the top players take the game very seriously. But at its core, RPS is still just a game that brings people together. Whether you’re competing at the national level or just playing with friends, RPS is a game that can bring out the competitive spirit in all of us.[ad_2]

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