42 Breathtaking Facts About Extreme Sports

April 26, 2019 | Mathew Burke

42 Breathtaking Facts About Extreme Sports

Extreme Sports factsExtreme sports have been on the rise since the the 1990s, with technology advancements making more extreme sports possible. Not for the faint of heart, extreme sports are adrenaline inducing sports that push human limits. These athletes are constantly trying to jump higher, go faster or fly farther which either leads to broken records or broken bones.

 42. The Floor Is Lava

Located the foothills of Cerro Negro Mountain in Nicaragua , the sport of volcano boarding actually lets boarders carve down the surface of an active volcano. Although volcano boarding is not a main stream activity, it lets adrenaline junkies check the “I just surfed down a 2000 ft volcano” box.

Extreme Sports FactsWikimedia Commons

41. Cowabunga

Surfing, also known as enalu in the Hawaiian language, was first seen by Western eyes during the first voyage of James Cook, during the ship's stay in Tahiti. Surfing was a central part of ancient Polynesian culture and certainly predates European contact. Today, surfing has become a wide spread pastime and almost anywhere there are waves you can find people trying to ride them.

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40. I think ill just walk down

Another adventure sport with Polynesian origins, cliff diving requires divers to take a plunge into the sea and from the top of cliffs as high as 23-28 meters! Amateurs can take the plunge from much lesser heights and frequently do. Divers have described the free fall as exhilarating, but know that cliff diving has claimed its fair share of lives.

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39. Pitfall

The thrill-seeking Aussies indulge in Crocodile Bungee Jumping for that extra adrenaline rush. If the jump alone isn’t enough, live crocodiles with their mammoth jaws open await you as you free fall toward them. You’re very narrowly missing the jaws of death when the bungee snaps you back up. How much do you trust that chord?

Steve Irwin QuizWikipedia

38. Olympic Level Danger

A variation of butt boarding, street Luge allows athletes to lay down their whole body on the surface of a specially designed board as they fly down mountain roads. Street lugers can reach speeds well over 100mph.

Extreme Sports factsWikipédia

37. Anyone want to drive up a cliff?

Rock Crawling challenges drivers’ skills through the roughest of tracks as they steer their heavy duty vehicle over boulders and steep paths strewn with rock piles. The slightest miscalculation could flip the vehicle, or worse, see it tumbling down a rocky slope. Buckle up!

Extreme Sports FactsWikimedia Commons

36. Slacker

Slacklining is not the typical tightrope walking one would witness at the circus. It in fact, it is comprised of a nylon rope that bounces and stretches as you walk along it. With the rope capable of bouncing, and stretching, it allows slackliners to use the line like a trampoline to do a variety of high flying stunts.

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35. A Rock And A…

Deep Water Soloing is rock climbing without any safety harness, but on cliffs over the sea. Only the most experienced climbers even attempt such cliffs. This is made even more difficult due to the added element of moisture from the crashing waves. Luckily the water can provides a but if a safety net.

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34. New Age

A new extreme sport on the block, first attempted by daredevil Russians, sky walking requires finding ways to the top of tall buildings or structures, and take dizzying selfies that are sure to make every palm sweaty. The venues for climbing can be anything- mammoth statues, skyscrapers, cranes, or natural cliffs.

Extreme Sports FactsWikimedia Commons

33. Roll In The Hay

Zorbing has taken the world by storm in recent years, and this is for a good reason as it looks like fantastic fun and is also rather hilarious to watch. The sport was born in New Zealand (like many extreme sports and activities) and involves climbing inside a large inflatable ball where riders are then sent hurling down a hillside until they stop (usually about half a mile). The orb is double layered, meaning that there is an air cushion keeping riders safe.

Extreme Sports FactsPixabay

32. Waterpult

Air Kicking is certainly an entertaining extreme sport, and it is also one that a lot of people would be open to trying (unlike most of the entries on this list). Air Kicking is essentially being catapulted through the air into a swimming pool or foam pit, and although it is safe you can be sure that it will get your adrenaline pumping. You are shot into the sky through the air in a pre-calculated parabolic trajeExtreme Sports factsctory which uses air pressure and water recoil technology. Around 60 liters of water are forced through a nozzle under the seat, which will fire participants around 26 feet into the air before crashing down into the water.

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31. Get Low

Limbo Skating involves using roller skates to limbo under objects, and many people have found a way to move under objects just inches off of the ground. Watching someone limbo under a bar just a few inches off the ground is incredible enough, but to do this on skates is even more impressive as they have to spread their legs apart and retain their balance. A 6-year-old from India, Gagan Satish, broke the world record in 2014 by limbo skating under 39 cars that were parked just five inches off the ground. The feat took him just 29 seconds to cover around 230 feet, and the video is truly an amazing watch. Good skill to have if you find yourself in a tight place.

Extreme Sports FactsWikimedia Commons

30. Half The Fun

Mountain biking is an extreme, dangerous and exhilarating sport, but some extreme sports enthusiasts find that two wheels is not extreme enough, so they have instead opted to ride a unicycle down mountains and rough terrains. Most people struggle to ride a unicycle, so the idea of traversing a mountain side on one seems a step too far, and it is a particularly difficult extreme sport to get to grips with. It is of course hugely impressive though, and although riders may not reach the same speeds as mountain biking it requires guts, determination and skill to conquer a mountain on just one wheel.

Extreme Sports FactsPixnio

28. Graceful

Wearing a cross between low stilts and pogo sticks, Powerbockers are able to launch themselves into the air and reach impressive heights. Performers are capable of jumping up to around five feet off the ground and can travel at speeds of up to 20 mph, as well as taking strides as large as nine feet. This means that there are obvious dangers attached to this extreme sport, but it also allows people to “jump like a kangaroo, run like a gazelle and stride like a giant.”

Extreme Sports FactsFlickr Garry Knight

27. Down Under Blunders

Extreme dinghy racing is one of the most chaotic and extreme motor sports, and this also ensures that it is one of the most entertaining too. Taking place through small swamps and canals in Australia, this is high intensity racing where one simple mistake could result in a huge accident. Oh, did we mention the water is inhabited by crocodiles, snakes, and all kinds of other creepy crawlies? Extreme dinghy racing seems to grow in popularity each year, and now Red Bull put on an annual Dinghy Derby which draws huge crowds to see these thrill seekers navigate their dinghy’s through twisting swamps at great speeds.

Extreme Sports FactsPixabay

26. I Believe I Can Fly

There are few experiences which would be as adrenaline pumping and as walking on the wings of a plane mid-flight, and this has developed into a popular extreme sport/activity called wingwalking. Typically, the individual will be strapped to the top wing of a vintage biplane where they will then be swept through the skies at speeds of up to 135 mph and will often have a pilot that will perform a range of acrobatic maneuvers too. This is not a particularly dangerous extreme sport as you are strapped to the plane, but rest assured that it is the thrill ride one won’t soon forget.

Extreme Sports FactsWikimedia Commons

25. Cheesy

The Cooper’s Hill Cheese-Rolling and Wake is an annual race held near Gloucester in England. The race sees a nine pound round of Double Gloucester cheese rolled down a hill, and contestants will then chase after it with the person first over the finish line claiming the cheese as their trophy. Cheese rolling may sound like a barrel of laughs and an innocent enough race to the bottom of the hill, but the hill is very steep and uneven which leads to everyone tumbling over and sometimes viscously. There are always several injuries with many requiring hospital treatment, and you need to watch a video of the race to see just how crazy yet incredibly entertaining it really is. It began as a tiny event for people in the local village, but has since become a world-famous event.

Extreme Sports FactsWikimedia Commons

24. It’s A Bird

At one point or another, everyone has imagined what it would be like to soar through the sky. Wing suit flying is the closest humans can come to this feeling. It is a combination of sky diving and hang gliding where the individual dons a wing suit, which looks very much like a flying squirrel. This suit adds a large amount of surface area to the body, so that when you jump from a high altitude and spread your arms and allowing you to fly. A parachute is then required to land much like sky diving. There are many risks attached to wing suit flying, especially because the pros try and see how close they can come to the ground before having to pull the chute.

Extreme Sports FactsWikipedia


23. Choo, Choo, Choose Something Else

The creator of Train Surfing has clearly seen one too many action films, and this is a sport which is also illegal around the world. Train Surfing involves climbing onto the roof of a train and “surfing” it as it moves at great speeds, and needless to say it is incredibly dangerous. Train Surfing is a huge problem is South Africa and India and many people have been killed attempting it. It was popular in the 80s and 90s, and once again resurfaced in 2005 after someone only known as “The Trainrider” surfed atop the InterCity Express, the fastest train in Germany. A few years later, 40 German teenagers died attempting this wild and dangerous activity/sport which is perhaps one step too far.

Extreme Sports FactsFlickr darkday

22. That’s Deep

Some might not consider scuba diving to be an extreme sport, but imagine divers submerge themselves up to 100 ft or more, without an oxygen tank strapped to their back. That is the sport of free diving. These divers often have enlarged lungs after years of holding their breath for as much as five minutes. No thanks.

Extreme Sports FactsFlickr

21. Teamwork

Blobbing is giant air bag, set it in the middle of a lake, with a person on one end, and someone else jumping onto the other end. The higher/heavier the jumper, the bigger the liftoff! There have been numerous viral videos of insane airtime from blobbing.

Extreme Sports FactsPixabay

20. Peaked

Mountain boarding, also known as dirtboarding and offroad boarding, takes on all types of terrain, and are sometimes used to do tricks or even downhill races. It’s a cross between skateboarding and snowboarding, but much more dangerous than both since boarders literally are going down mountains, and there is no soft snow to fall into.

Extreme Sports FactsWikimedia Commons

19. Wake Me Up

Wakeboarding and water skiing are very popular water sports, typically done at the recreational level. But, some take these sports to a whole new level, throwing fancy maneuvers and jumping the boat’s wake to do tricks in the air. This requires extreme skills to pull off, as failing to land on the water could result in injury or death.

Extreme Sports FactsPixabay


18. Windy Ride

Kiting, also known as kitesurfing and kiteboarding is similar to wakeboarding, but instead of being towed by a boat, riders fly a large kite that acts as a sail. Adding the kite to the equation even allows Kitesurfers to surf on sand dunes or even snow. The danges of this sport comes because surfers can find themselves blown hundreds of feet into the air.

Extreme Sports FactsPublic Domain Pictures

17. Sore Feet

Barefooting is just like water-skiing, but without the skis. Barefooters must travel at speeds up to 35-40mph to stay above the water. As if that isn’t enough, barefooting competitions include tricks, slaloms, and even jumps. Be sure to book a foot massage immediately after.

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16. Stick Up

XPogo is pogo sticks on steroids! Extreme pogo involves all types of flips, tricks, and jumps up to 9 feet in the air. Pogo sticks aren’t just for kids anymore.

Extreme Sports FactsInterExchange

15. Parkool

Also known as freerunning, parkour is the art of moving over obstacles as quickly and efficiently as possible. No equipment needed; parkour can be practiced practically anywhere. The bigger the obstacle, the greater the risk and reward. Since you literally need no equipment, parkour is one of the most accessible extreme sports.

Extreme Sports FactsPixabay

14. I’m Board

There are many different specialties of skateboarding, including half pipe (vert), mega ramp, and street riding. These days pro skateboarders choose a discipline and work to improve their skills, adding more difficult tricks and flying higher. Crashing is to be expected, and getting back up to try it again is part of the process. If Tony Hawk has taught us anything, it’s that you rarely land a new trick the first time, but if you don’t try you’ll never know.

Extreme Sports FactsPixabay

13. More Like White Knuckle

Whitewater rafting is using an inflatable raft or kayak to navigate choppy “whitewater” that has an unstable, turbulent current. Rafters risk hitting sharp rocks, unexpected steep waterfalls, and being thrown from the raft. Whitewater rafting is often attempted in groups, but sometimes individuals attempt the rapids solo. Like most other extreme sports, safety is the number one concern with this one.

Extreme Sports FactsWikimedia Commons

12. Wall Walk

Abseiling or rappelling is the act of descending down a cliff side on a rope. Sounds easy right? People must trust their safety and lives to the rappelling equipment and their skills. One mishap can make for a very bad situation. Luckily rappelling technology has come a long way in the last 20 years, so this one’s more for the thrill.

Extreme Sports FactsPxHere


11. Bases Loaded

Base jumping from a tall structure or cliff, and free falling at over 100 mph is a thrill that is difficult to match. Unpredictable wind gusts, proximity to other buildings, and short period of time to deploy the parachute are some reasons why BASE (Building, Antenna, Span, Earth) jumping is a favorite to many adrenaline junkies. Not to mention it’s illegal.

Extreme Sports FactsPixabay

10. Slippery Slope

Ice Cross is a lovely combination of ice-skating and ski racing, where four people wearing pads and hockey skates race down a track made of ice. Steep hills, tight turns, jumps and rollers make for a very exciting scene. Oh, and there’s really only one rule, first one to the bottom wins. Definitely one of the most extreme sports we’ve ever seen.

Extreme Sports FactsPxHere

9. Speed Demons

Downhill skateboarders use long boards, softer wheels, and wider wheel base, enabling them to reach ridiculously high speeds. Boarders can reach up to 70 miles per hour, and the slightest miscalculation could be their last.

Extreme Sports FactsPexels


8. Ice Grips

Ice climbing is scaling up massive ice formations either on frozen waterfalls or snow covered mountains. Ice climbing opens itself up to all kinds of risks like broken chunks of ice, avalanches, even falling to a cold death. This is the sport for that special someone who thinks simply climbing a giant mountain is too safe.

Extreme Sports FactsPixabay

7. Peaked Part II

Big mountain skiing/snowboarding is simple. Get to the top of an ungroomed, snow covered mountain (usually by helicopter), and ski or snowboard down safely. The only problem is, skiing/snowboarding down an ungroomed snowy mountain is anything but safe. Often, skiers/boarders will have to drop off massive cliffs and navigate around exposed rock. On top of all of that, there’s the added risk that boarders/skiers will cause an avalanche behind them that will chase them down the mountain.

Extreme Sports FactsWikipedia

6. Daredevils

Free climbing is climbing a rock formation without any other type of assistance or support. Clips anchored into the rock by the climbers as they climb are ignored as these daredevils either make it to the top or…

Extreme Sports FactsPxHere


5. Speed Racers

Going down a luge or skeleton track can get very dicey considering how narrow, twisty, and dangerous the ice track is. To make things more extreme, the small steel sled used can reach up to 80+ miles per hour. At those speeds, a helmet won’t do much.

Extreme Sports FactsPxHere

3. Canyon Not?

Canyon swinging is a newer extreme sport where a very long rope swing is attached to a harness, and secured to a bridge or a cliff on the other side. A swinger gets in the harness and leaps into the air, swinging repeatedly over large canyons or bodies of water. Because the rope swing is so large, it takes a few minutes for the swing to come to a complete stop.

Extreme Sports FactsWikipedia


2. Sky High

Although all extreme sports pose some kind of danger, statistically Hang gliding is the most dangerous when it comes to chance of death. Hang gliding is an extreme sport where gliders harness themselves into a large kite and leap from great hights.  The large glider creates enough lift to allow the glider to fly through the air and land safely. Sounds pretty fun and relaxing, while simultaneously terrifying.

Extreme Sports FactsPixabay

1. No Thanks

For most people visiting Spain, the Running of the Bulls is a fun tourist experience, but for an unfortunate few, it means injuries, and possibly death. The agitated bulls are released into crowded city streets and provoked into chasing participants who try to escape the bulls without injury. How does that saying go? You mess with the bulls and you get the horns?

Extreme Sports FactsWikimedia Commons

Sources: 1,2,3


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