Tag Archive: Sports

   

5 most extreme and dangerous sports

Till now restricted to fewer nations and limited activities, extreme or adventure or dangerous sport has been consistently gaining popularity with newer sports being introduced in the category. This when the activities classified as extreme sport come with a high level of inherent danger and are certainly not for the weak-hearted.

As on date around 40 activities (and many more number of variations) fall under the recorded classification of dangerous sport albeit with some debate over the levels of risks each carry. Of these 40 sports, we have picked 5 which are perceived to be most dangerous by a large group of stakeholders:

Cave Diving

Cave Diving

Image credit: Flickr DaseinDesign

Considered by many as the most dangerous sport Cave diving is a type of technical diving, which is not only challenging but also quite hazardous. The sport is an extension of caving and scuba diving and is undertaken for the exploration of under-water caves using specialized equipment and specific skill-sets. The one obvious danger is that due to the cave’s ceiling, the diver in an emergency cannot swim vertically to the surface but must swim the entire way back out. Poor or zero visibility and decompression sickness are some other hazards attached to this sport.

BASE Jumping

Base jumping

Image credit: Flickr santimolina

BASE in Base jumping is acronym for Buildings, Antennas, Spans (bridges) & Earth (cliffs). The sport involves participants jumping from fixed objects (any of the BASE) and using a parachute to break their fall. Owing to the obvious risks attached from falling from such heights, early BASE jumpers used two parachutes (main and reserve).  A 2002 study reveals that BASE jumping has one fatality per sixty participants.

Bungee Jumping

Bungee jumping

Image credit: Flickr syymza

Unlike the BASE jumping where a parachute or even a wing-suit is used Bungee jumping is an extreme sport that involves jumping from a tall structure or even a helicopter while connected to a large elastic cord. As the jumper jumps into a free fall, the cord, usually tied to the jumper’s feet, stretches to its full length to stop the jump a short distance before the earth / water surface. The jumper flies upwards again as the cord recoils.  This up and down continues until all the energy is dissipated. A common risk involved in the sport is the snapping of the cord, which in fact has been the prime reason of many casualties.  There have been serious injuries when the jumper’s neck or body has entangled in the cord. Increased stress levels, decrease in immune function and a type of stroke has also been linked to Bungee jumping.

Motorcycle Racing

Motorcycle Racing

Image credit: Flickr joeduty

Motorcycle racing with its many on-road and off-road genres is undoubtedly one of the most dangerous sports in the world, yet its popularity across the globe is unprecedented. The sport is as much popular with the riders as with the spectators and fans.  An extremely physically demanding sport, the thrill of the high speed, dirt tracks or rough / ice patches ensures that bikers forgo the obvious dangers with élan.

Big Wave Surfing

Big wave surfing

Image credit: Flickr Jeff Rowley Big Wave Surfer

A discipline within surfing Big wave surfing is actually a more serious and more hazardous form of surfing where surfers, using varied sizes of surf board (depending on size of the wave and individual technique), paddle into or are towed onto waves which are at least or over 20 feet high. At that height, the surfers have to maintain their equilibrium either my moving zigzag or by spinning themselves.  Failure to maintain the equilibrium means the waves may push the surfer down 20-50 feet below the surface in-turn causing rupture of eardrums, severe injuries or even death.

   

Bullfighting – Sport, Art or Cruelty

Bull Fighting

Image credit: Flickr JuanJ

How many of you have seen this extreme sport in which the bulls are killed during the game just for the sake of entertainment. Dozens of people also killed during this blood game every year. Many people defend Bullfighting by labeling it as an art or a sport while on the other hand for majority of the people its nothing but cruelty.

Origin of Bullfighting

Bullfighting originated from Spain and as such Spain has become synonymous with this traditional event.  It is said to have then spread to the other countries like Portugal, Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela and France.  There are in fact modified forms of bullfighting being practiced in some other countries such as Oman and India.  (Many of these countries in fact also have cock-fighting as a favorite pass time).

Bull Fighting

Image credit: Flickr JuanJ

Sport, Art or Cruelty?

The sport, if it can be called one, has been a matter of debate and conflicting ideologies for a very long time with die-hard fans of bullfighting claiming it to be a culturally important tradition and event an art.  Many other people and the animal rights activists naturally see it as a blood-sport openly criticizing the practice as barbarian because as per tradition fighting bulls can only be used once.

How they play

Even today this game is practiced in the same traditional way. It involves professional matadors, bull fighters or toreros which perform various formal moves construed and invented by the bullfighter’s own style or by the school. Such maneuvers are performed at close range, which places the bullfighter at risk of being speared or flattened.

Fact about Red Cape

Bull Fighter

Image credit: Flickr AhBoon.Net

The red color cape is used to attract bull and as per common misconception it is believed that the color red will anger the bull. However, this is not true as bulls are colorblind. The bulls are agitated by the wave of cape and as a tradition till date red color cape is used. The toreros or matador uses his cape to attract the bull in a series of passes which serve the dual purpose of wearing the animal down for the kill and creating a spell bound show for the audiences.

The bullfight usually concludes with the killing of the bull by a single sword push known as estocada. In Portugal, the traditional finale called pega concludes the show. In this men try to grab and hold the bull by its horns and since it is illegal to kill a bull in the arena hence it is removed and slaughtered in the enclosures.

Bullfighting remains in controversy, it being a culture for its supporters and fans, and sheer brutality by many others.

Global anti-bullfighting campaigns and increased sensitization has however seen a definite decline and even complete ban of the practice in some countries and in some regions in Spain.  The events of bullfighting in Spain have fallen by a third during the last 3-4 years.