Danger, excitement, confidence. Extreme sports bump your life up to the next level. Unsurprisingly, extreme sports fans love to come up with crazier and crazier ideas every year – as if base jumping and urban exploring weren’t mad enough already (remember this viral video that got everyone’s palms sweating?).
It seems hanging off sky scrapers is young person’s game, with the 18-24 demographic leading the way in participation in extreme sports. Fewer than 10% of people have partook in an extreme sports activity since 2009, but when you see these three sports, maybe I can encourage you to put down the baseball bat and pick up the skis/helmet/parachute.
Slamball is easily the most fun looking sport I’ve ever seen. Combining the best parts of basketball, football and trampolining, Slamball is played on a basketball court augmented with four trampolines surrounding each basket. This is already enough to make it an outrageous dunk-fest, but it gets better. It is also a full-contact sport, meaning there’s plenty of blocking and brutal body checking to break up the pretty notion of players gracefully flying towards the net.
What you’ll need to play: unfortunately, you might have to join an official Slamball team to find a proper court, unless you have enough money to make one yourself… Slamball existed from 2002-2008 in a broadcasted league format, and doesn’t seem likely to come back any time soon. Otherwise, knee pads, elbow pads and some LeBron 12s would be handy. Check out some action amazing Slamball here.
This one needs little explanation. If you’re an expert skier, you might already be aware than some people are going very far off-piste in order to reap maximum thrill rewards. The latest trend is to hire a helicopter and go skiing in the mountains. The benefits of this are obvious; No chairlift waiting, avoiding the queues, and getting to start your run by jumping out of a chopper onto a mountainside! It’s as if this sport is made to exist symbiotically with GoPro.
What you’ll need to play: the prospects of actually getting to play this one are much better than with Slamball. Many resorts now actually offer heli-skiing as a luxury, top of the range service. Check out this resort in Utah, the highest heli-skiing operation in the world. You’ll need the usual ski paraphernalia too of course, so check out retailers like High Octane to find some amazing prices and the best ski gear deals.
I shall stick my neck on the line and claim that the Cooper Hill Cheese Rolling is the oldest extreme sport in the world. Since the 1400s people have been trying to beat all competitors in catching a wheel of cheese that gets rolled down from the top of Cooper Hill in Gloucester. This may not be extreme, but I assure you that it is pretty hard-core. This footage from the event shows just how extreme it can get. Flailing bodies form an avalanche of flesh, each hell bent on being the first to tumble their broken bones on the eight-pound double-Gloucester cheese-wheel.
What you’ll need to take part: the best thing about this is that there is nothing you’ll need. Just show up, go to the top of the hill, and fight for your life. Fancy dress is encouraged but not obligatory.