There are certain “classic” sports that are recognized and enjoyed by people around the world, including the likes of soccer, basketball, tennis and golf. There are also plenty of extreme, crazy sports which are sure to blow your mind. Adrenaline is an enormous part of what makes sport so enjoyable, so it seems inevitable that people have gone in search of sports and activities that create the most adrenaline pumping action even if it may not be the safest activity. Extreme sports such as snowboarding, surfing and skateboarding do not seem quite as extreme when you see people performing these wild sports, and you have to give them credit for their creativity as well as their bravery for coming up with and partaking in some of this jaw dropping sports.
Due to the wild and extreme nature of these sports, not many of them have caught on around the world. Some are what you would call a niche sport and are unlikely to expand, whilst others are growing in popularity and you may one day see people competing on your television screens. We can only hope that this is the case, as the majority of these sports are simultaneously gripping, breath taking, dramatic, impressive and of course hilarious.
Although there is an element of danger in all sports, many of these crazy extreme sports are incredibly dangerous to perform and involve putting yourself in high risk situations. This is what adrenaline junkies thrive on and they wouldn’t have it any other way. With this in mind - don’t try any of these at home, kids.
Here are the top 15 craziest extreme sports in the world.
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 orb where you are then sent hurling down a hillside until you stop (usually about half a mile). The orb is double layered, meaning that there is an air layer in between two inflatable orbs (this acts as a shock absorber and ensures that it is safe). If you are looking for a sport that will leave you dizzy, disorientated, full of adrenaline and in hysterics, then this is the one for you.
14 Air Kicking
Air Kicking is certainly an entertaining extreme sport, and it is also one that a lot of people would like to try (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 trajectory 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. It looks great fun, and it is also quite the spectacle to watch too.
13 Limbo Skating
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. Although not as extreme as some of the other entries, limbo skating certainly carries risk and is a strange yet entertaining sport.
12 Crocodile Bungee
Full points to the person who found a way to make bungee jumping even more terrifying, as I’m not sure you can top throwing crocodiles into the mix. As if falling to the ground from a great height attached to a rubber band wasn’t extreme enough, some adrenaline junkies are now bungee jumping over a pit of crocodiles for their fix. One woman’s cord snapped whilst attempting this from the Victoria Falls Bridge, but she fortunately was able to swim to safety despite having her feet tied together. Foster’s also created a commercial which depicted someone having their head bitten off attempting a crocodile bungee, with the line “New Foster’s Hit Tap… Don’t Lose Your Head”.
11 Mountain Unicycling
Mountain biking is an extreme, dangerous and exhilarating sport, but not enough for some people. 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 you may not reach the same speeds as mountain biking it takes a lot of guts, determination and skill to conquer a mountain on just one wheel.
Creeking is one of the most dangerous sports there is, but of course this also makes it one of the most exhilarating. It is similar to canoeing and kayaking, but Creeking involves descending steep low-volume white-water that includes waterfalls, slides and unexplored canyons. This means that it has to be performed in specially made canoes and extra gear is needed to ensure that people are kept as safe as possible. There are all kinds of unique hazards attached to Creeking, including sieves (where the paddler gets stuck underwater), chicken heads (rock sticking out of slides) and of course waterfalls where the landing is key. This is certainly not one for the faint of heart.
Wearing a cross between low stilts and pogo sticks, performers are able to launch themselves into the air and reach impressive heights. This enables them to perform all kinds of stunts, and this means that skateparks around the world now have people performing this extreme sport along with skateboarders, skaters and BMX riders. 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”. Once you have seen someone run around wearing these stilts, you will want to try it for yourself.
8 Extreme Dinghy Racing
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 or misjudgement could result in a huge accident. You also will desperately not want to take a tumble into the water, as here you will find 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 derby which draws huge crowds to see these thrill seekers navigate their dinghy’s through twisting swamps at great speeds.
7 Wing Walking
There are few experiences which would be as adrenaline pumping and as extreme as walking on the wings of a plane mid-flight, and this has developed into a popular extreme sport/activity called wing walking. Typically, the individual will be strapped to the top wing of a vintage biplane where you will then be swept through the skies at speeds of up to 135 mph and you will often have a pilot that will perform a range of acrobatic manoeuvres too. This is not a particularly dangerous extreme sport as you are strapped to the plane, but you can be sure that it is the ultimate thrill ride and something that will have your heart in your mouth throughout.
6 Volcano Boarding
Hurtling down an active volcano on a thin piece of board or metal may sound like something out of a James Bond film, but it has in fact become a hugely popular extreme sport and is practiced by many. The sport is most popular on Nicaragua’s Cerro Negro, and this sees participants travelling down from 726 metres and reaching astonishing speeds of up to 50 mph. Like most extreme sports, safety gear is very important and ensures that injuries are often just scratches and bruises. Then again, there is the threat of an eruption and having molten lava flowing down the volcano which not even 007 could evade.
5 Cheese Rolling
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.
4 Cliff Diving
As the name implies, this crazy extreme sport involves throwing yourself off of cliffs from a great height into the sea below. There are many great benefits to this extreme sport, such as seeing some stunning sights in beautiful areas of the world, free-falling through the air will give you a huge adrenaline rush, you will feel at one with nature and there is no special clothing/equipment to buy. It is of course highly dangerous though and can put great strain on your body. The impact when you hit the water can be enough to break bones or compress your spine, but there are then rocks, branches and fish to consider when landing which can cause fatalities. You must always enter the water feet-first in a vertical line to break through the water easier, and any other landing will always result in injury or even death.
3 High Lining
Slack lining could be described as urban tightrope walking. Whilst some people will practice this with the line a few feet off the ground, there are also those extreme characters that take things to the next level by slack lining across cliff tops and other dangerous areas (this is called high lining). The person walking the rope will usually have a harness attached to the rope itself, but this does not guarantee safety as if you were to fall near the start or towards the end you could swing into the cliff side and if you fall in the middle could cause the rope to fail. High lining provides an incredible thrill however which is what makes it so popular, and in addition to this it ensures for some stunning views which nobody may have seen before.
2 Wingsuit Flying
At one point or another, everyone has imagined what it would be like to soar through the sky. With wingsuit flying you can discover this feeling, and the extreme sport is a combination of diving and hang gliding where the individual dons a wingsuit, 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 legs you get an increase in lift which allows you to fly. A parachute is then required to land much like sky diving. There are many risks attached to wingsuit flying, but it is also the closest that you will come to flying through the air like a superhero, or at least like a flying squirrel.
1 Train Surfing
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 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 InterCityExpress, 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.