We have considered that it makes sense, when looking at the most extreme and dangerous sports, to make a distinction between “real” sports that are organized, where there is usually a winner or at least a rating, and extreme sports at for whom the adrenaline kick is in the foreground and there are usually no professional competitions, since these sports are characterized by daring loners.
This list deals with these extreme sports, if you are looking for the most dangerous sport in the world, you should take a look at our list, there are not surprisingly sports like rugby or MMA and motorsport, but also exotic ones like the sledge race Iditarod or Buzkaschi. You can find out what it’s all about and which sport made it to number 1 in our top 10 most extreme sports worldwide.
Aside from these regular sports, there are some particularly extreme sports that may not meet the classic definition of a sport, but in fact, these are in part the really daring, breakneck and breathtaking tests of human limits in which extreme athletes push their absolute limits and theirs Put life on the hunt for the ultimate adrenaline kick at risk.
These extreme sports require a lot of courage, endurance, strength, willpower and an alert mind. These most dangerous sports not only push their participants to the limits of what is possible and their own limits, they also bring unique experiences and unforgettable experiences, many participants describe their experiences in these extreme sports as a kind of intoxication.
Some people believe that such extreme sports pose too great a safety risk because the participants risk their lives. We think that life and death are inextricably linked, and it is often necessary to take certain risks to do extraordinary things. That being said, we take risks every day, for example, when we drive a car just to go to work or to the supermarket. Isn’t it understandable that some people increase the risk in exchange for unique experiences, records or even discoveries?
People have a unique urge that is rooted in our nature. Most people, at least in the western affluent society, live a life that offers its advantages and is quiet and without real problems, but also without any sensation and excitement. Undoubtedly, most people prefer a quiet life and avoid engaging in these most extreme sports, so they live their everyday lives without adventure and thrills.
But where can you still experience really exciting and adventurous moments these days? Obviously, we don’t encounter such fantastic moments as often in our daily life, but continue to do our normal tasks that make our life monotonous. There must be something here that will get us out of all this boring and passive routine and bless us with the real charm and life.
Friends of the thrill find variety in an extreme sport here, cave diving in closed heights under the water is just as possible as surfing on 15-meter waves that can destroy a small village.
Such activities, collectively defined as extreme sports, are not for everyone. They mainly attract men (though not exclusively) between 20 and 40 who live for the moment – which is good as it could always be their last. In addition to death, there is a long list of injuries: from concussions or brain damage to broken bones, frostbite to permanent lung damage, to name a few.
The definition of the most extreme sport in the world remains a sensitive issue, mainly due to the limited amount of data: it is not surprising that organizers and participants refuse to publish deaths. Existing information leads to strange results. In the UK, for example, more people die of drowning each year from fishing than from any other sport. Still, one would not really consider fishing to be very dangerous or even an extreme sport. The key is not the number of fatalities, but the worst scenario if something goes wrong, and of course the risk of death and injury in relation to the number of participants. This list here is not about the most dangerous sports, but about the “most extreme sports”.
Since Icarus, people have been willing to test how close they can get to a nasty death. But why do people take such risks? A well-known BASE jumper answered the same question in disbelief: “Why? Because you can! ” Some people will make extraordinary efforts to get that kick. If that means jumping out of the helicopter into pristine snow and taking the risk of an avalanche, why not?
Human curiosity seems to be just as lively today as it was in the 1970s when California kids “butt boarded” their skateboards, which is probably one of the earliest extreme sports. Today’s difference from the beginnings of these sports is that organizations and sponsors such as Red Bull, the energy drink, have transformed the past counterculture pastimes into profit-oriented companies with regular television events that offer prize money and official records. For example, the Billabong Odyssey offers $ 100,000 for the first surfer to ride a 100-foot wave.
A large number of people are attracted to these dangerous sports, mainly because of the adrenaline kick and the unique experience that cannot be experienced in everyday life. These sports are not for the faint of heart. If someone likes to live at the limit, these sports are just the thing.
Here is our top 10 list of the most extreme sports in the world:
10th place: heli-ski
Helicopter skiing, a more adventurous but more dangerous variant of regular skiing, was launched in the Canadian snow-capped Rocky Mountains in the mid-1960s and is enjoying increasing popularity worldwide. Here, a helicopter is used to transport the hard-boiled, athletic thrill seekers to the carefully selected pristine mountains, from where they can enjoy the snow-covered descents. The most famous heliskiing area in the world is British Columbia, Canada, with more than 11 meters of extremely dry snow, tree-lined cliffs and plunging glacier cliffs. This extremely dangerous extreme sport allows skiers or snowboarders
It is not difficult to read from the name of the sport itself that heliskiing has something to do with helicopters. It is snowboarding or skiing on slopes that are completely remote and mostly only accessible by helicopter. Passionate fans of heli-skiing even book a year in advance to jump out of the helicopter into the snow on peaks that are far from the human population and then go skiing. They completely ignore the risks of being stranded by weather changes or killed by avalanches. The helicopter flights themselves are not without their dangers.
In this deadly sport, people actually pay a lot of money to fly the helicopter into a virgin mountain landscape that no man touched before driving down the white slope. These skiers – obviously millionaires, but that’s not the whole point – spend large sums of money exploring a natural landscape as opposed to the groomed slopes of a ski area. The natural environment obviously carries greater risks and inconveniences. Even the journey into the interior of a mountain area has often been life-threatening in the past. In 1994, Frank Wells, the former president of Disney, was killed in a helicopter crash during a helicopter ride.
Even the most extreme ski scenes in a James Bond film fade compared to heli-skiers. You fly by helicopter to untouched snow-capped mountains, jump on fresh snow and ski – far away from the crowds and the next mountain rescue. If an avalanche doesn’t kill them, they can get snowed in if the weather changes, or worse. Nevertheless, the sport attracts a passionate fan base.
Anything associated with jumping out of a helicopter becomes dangerous, and heli-skiing is responsible for several deaths and injuries a year. The crazy extreme sport of heliskiing, in which people jump out of a helicopter to land on skis on a mountain slope, is number 10 on our list of the most dangerous extreme sports in the world.
Rank 9: parkour
The latest urban trend, in which people jump back and forth between rooftops without any protection and try to overcome all obstacles found in the city as quickly and spectacularly as possible, is of course one of the ten most dangerous sports in the world.
Freerunning is a sport in which the runner interacts with various obstacles in the area. Freerunning can include somersaults and other acrobatic elements. These movements are usually adopted from other sports such as gymnastics, gymnastics or break dancing. Freerunners can practice their own movements, styles and variations in different landscapes. It’s about getting creative in a neutral, unsecured, or restricted environment. Freerunners usually also do parkour. Freerunning is often associated with parkour, to which acrobatic and stylish movements are added to demonstrate the art of movement. Freerunning was founded by David Belle, who discussed the topic in the 2003 documentary Jump London.
Sebastien Foucan developed freerunning further as a more comprehensive form of parkour. Freerunning is based on parkour, but does not emphasize efficiency, but rather craftsmanship and leaves room for unusual flips and stylistic acrobatics.
The central principle of freerunning is that you should express yourself by moving fluently around you. There are no restrictions on the form of this movement. In his book Freerunning, Foucan addresses a number of basic principles of sport. Other practitioners have proposed different principles. For example, Daniel Ilabaca encourages people to think positively, which is mainly due to the fact that freerunners will sometimes drop – mainly because they have to keep testing their limits.
In Western Europe, Georges Hébert had the idea of overcoming obstacles to personal development or sport. He observed indigenous tribes in Africa with fantastic athletic skills and created the “natural method” system to train people with the same ideas. His ideas eventually led to the Parkour du Combattant (“obstacle parkour”, literally “fighter parkour”), which is now a standard of military training.
These ideas were picked up by a young Raymond Belle who put them to practical use while he was separated from his family during the First Indochina War. When he moved to France and started a family, he passed these ideas on to his son David. Thirty years later, other young people were drawn to these ideas and a small group formed, the Yamakasi, which also included Foucan. This group trained together for several years and in 1997 they received attention through David Belle’s brother, Jean-Francois, and were invited to perform at events. However, the Yamakasi finally separated because some members were looking for more individual expressions of the discipline.
In the meantime, action star Jackie Chan had used the same concepts in most of his films since the early 1980s across the world.
Foucan wanted to create a discipline that is more personal than parkour and easier to adapt to the individual goals of each person. His idea was similar to that of Bruce Lee, who created Jeet Kune Do. Foucan wanted to combine everything he found useful and what he liked from his parkour experience into one sport.
Foucan’s first ideas were first disseminated in the documentation Jump London (2003) and in the sequel Jump Britain (2005). Foucan has appeared in other film productions such as Casino Royale and Madonna’s Confessions Tour. With each appearance, both the discipline and Foucan itself became better known.
Rank 8: tobogganing / tobogganing
The Olympic Games include many fantastic sports that fascinate the audience. Among them is an extremely dangerous sport called luge. Here the athlete races down an icy, steep stretch at a speed of 140 km / h and in some corners of the curve of the artificial ice rink, the luge athlete has to bring his body at an angle of 270 degrees at a speed of 140 km / h. With these speeds and the rock-hard slope, which often runs several meters above the ground, it is clear that a tiny mistake can lead to death here. Very serious traumatic brain injuries and even deaths are not uncommon in this sport.
However, this sport has a little brother, and in our opinion this variant is even more extreme and undoubtedly belongs to this list of the most extreme sports for us. We are talking about Street Luge.
In this dry version of the luge sport of the Olympic Winter Games, the participants race downhill just a few centimeters above the ground with a modified skateboard that is only driven by gravity.
Californian teenagers practiced this extreme sport as early as the 1970s before it even got a name. Street Luge was born in Southern California when downhill skateboarders found that they could reach faster speeds by lying on their skateboards while racing downhill. This early form of sport is known today as “laydown skateboarding”.
The sport has developed rapidly since then, both in terms of the type of lying on the board and in terms of the design of the racing sled / skateboards. The high number of injuries at early events has almost put an end to the sport, but now there are strict safety requirements for all approved competitions, including wearing a helmet, sturdy shoes, and protective racing suit. Being crazy is not a requirement, but it helps.
The first professional race took place in 1975 in Signal Hill, California. The rating was based on the top speed reached. The boards used in this race ranged from simple skateboards to complex soap box vehicles in which the driver was completely enclosed in plastic or fiberglass. The sport was not commonly referred to as tobogganing at the time, but the term “luge” (sledding) was used to describe the driving position of some participants. Most of the participants were still on the board at that time. However, a rule gap allowed riders to choose their own board position, including the one on their back. In 1978, repeated injuries to drivers and spectators caused the races in Signal Hill to be canceled.
Roger Hickey and Don Baumea of the Signal Hill races kept the sport alive by continuing to run races in Southern California. Around the early 1990s, both underground and professional races continued to be held in California. The race organizers began to increasingly implement equipment, safety and racing regulations in the 1980s and 1990s.
Street tobogganing is closely related to skateboarding, with the exception that the rider is on his back on the board or sled when falling down a paved road or track at extremely high speeds. The legality of this extremely dangerous high-speed activity is a difficult issue. Participants must wear protective clothing and helmets, the chances of collision on the road are high, with only the feet acting as brakes. Strong protective clothing and a helmet are really essential if you don’t want to find yourself smeared all over the street.
You would expect this sport to be at the forefront. Surprisingly, it’s pretty safe – relatively speaking. “Only” 25 deaths were recorded between 2008 and 2011. The injuries are fairly serious, but rare due to some serious safety precautions such as full leather outfits and motorcycle helmets.
Street tobogganing has now receded behind longboarding in terms of participant and spectator numbers, and due to the fact that there are only a few, but professionally organized races, there are fewer injuries and deaths here than with longboarding, where often inexperienced newbies without Wear protective clothing on the furiously fast boards. Nevertheless, tobogganing is clearly an entry in this list, mainly because of its history as perhaps the first extreme sport of the modern age. This makes “Street Luge” number 8 in our list of the most dangerous extreme sports.
7th place: longboarding
This is a variation of skateboarding with a longboard instead of a normal skateboard. Longboarders often practice on open roads, which increases the risk of injury from various obstacles in the form of moving vehicles and obstacles. Longboarders often suffer head injuries and broken bones, including internal bleeding. Using a helmet can significantly reduce the rate of injury. This sport can also cause traumatic brain injuries, which can even lead to the death of the longboarder. Skateboarding is a slightly less dangerous sport because it uses a normal skateboard instead of a longboard and the speeds achieved are a lot lower.
Downhill longboarding is about going downhill as quickly as possible and keeping the board under control. Speeds of over 130 kilometers per hour were reached. British driver Pete Connolly is the current Guinness world record holder for the fastest man on a longboard with a breathtaking top speed of 146.73 kilometers per hour.
A longboard varies in shape and size in contrast to its traditional counterpart, the skateboard, and offers more stability, traction and durability due to the larger wheel circumference and the lower wheel hardness. Many, but not all, longboards use axles that contain geometrical parameters other than a skateboard. These factors and their variation have made room for a variety of disciplines, functions and purposes for a longboard. There are also professionally organized races in longboarding, in which some drivers reach speeds of up to 100 kilometers per hour. The angles at which some longboards can turn and their ability to cover long distances make them more suitable for cruising on the road than normal skateboards.
Longboarding started in the 1950s. The idea for longboarding comes from surfers from Hawaii. They wanted to be able to practice their surfing hobby on land when the waves were too small to surf. The surfers then figured out how to achieve their goal of getting surfing ashore by modifying their skateboards. They grabbed a piece of thick plywood and shaped it into a smaller version of a surfboard, then bolted the axles and wheels to the decks and drove to small hills to mimic the same movements they did while surfing.
In the 1970s, a small group of longboarders continued to develop their techniques. Some longboarders from this period were introduced in 1978 in an article in the SkateBoarder magazine entitled “Cult of the Longboard”. These pioneers saw longboarding as a form of self-expression and were influenced by surfing. Despite the advent of polyurethane bikes (known as “thane” by longboarders), longboarding was not yet widespread in the 1970s.
Longboarding continued to live as an underground sport, and home hobbyists continued to build boards in their garages or buckled axles with old 1970s cryptonic bikes or roller skate bikes on snowboard decks.
In the early 1990s, Sector 9 started mass-producing and selling longboards. Technology also changed in the 1990s. The reverse kingpin trucks, special rear-mounted axles, made the longboard more stable, for example.
The internet has enabled small groups of skateboarders to communicate with each other, which has allowed the sport to continue growing. There are several sub-branches of longboarding with relatively small but clearly defined groups of followers such as slalom, LDP (Long Distance Pushing / Pumping), downhill, dance, freeriding, technical hardwheel sliding and more.
In addition to the diversification into many “types”, longboarding has also returned to its origins. Ramps have started to be used to develop more street-oriented tricks and crossover events, while also picking up on its earlier beginnings in slalom, skating, cornering and speed.
The speed record on a longboard was set in 2017 when Peter Connolly reached a speed of 146.73 km / h.
A record for the longest longboard route was set by David Cornthwaite in 2006 when he ran 5,855.21 km from Perth to Brisbane through Australia. This record has since been broken by Rob Thomas from New Zealand, who ran 12,159 km.
Longboarding is associated with a different injury pattern than skateboarding. Many longboarding injuries occur while driving downhill, while very few skateboarding accidents occur when driving downhill. In downhill racing, unlike other longboard applications where a helmet and padding can be worn, riders must wear certain protective equipment. Fully closed helmet, padding on the driver’s elbows, knees and wrist, gloves and a leather suit are required. This equipment is required by the International Downhill Federation. Longboarding injuries are more likely to affect the head and neck areas than skateboarding injuries, which tend to affect a skater’s lower extremities.
There are media reports of five longboard-related deaths in Canada and the United States in 2012 and four in 2013. A number of municipalities, particularly Vancouver, have considered banning or restricting longboarding.
The extremely dangerous hobby is not widely regarded as an extreme sport, but in the form in which some participants perform it, it is without doubt on our list of the 7 most dangerous extreme sports.
6th place: cheerleading
The most surprising entry on this list, but the cheerleading sport, which is particularly popular in the USA and which, among other sports events, provides additional entertainment for fans, is one of the most extreme and dangerous sports in the world. As with gymnastics, which we cover in our list of the most dangerous “conventional” sports, cheerleading requires the utmost concentration and incredible body control, and a small mistake can have tragic consequences.
If you actually think about it, this sport should be much higher. In some of the actions, the athletes are thrown up to 9 meters into the air. If your teammates miss hooking on the way down, there’s nothing to protect their head. It is considered one of the most dangerous high school sports in America. Cheerleading causes more head injuries than high school soccer.
This sport requires much more than dance steps, choreography and sexy movements. This deadly sport (yes, it is a sport, even if the debate about this name is still going on) is extremely dangerous. Over 20,000 injuries to cheerleaders have been reported each year, making it the most vulnerable sport for women. The most common injuries are painful vertebral fractures and broken legs. If the cheerleader falls on the head, there is a high possibility that she will suffer concussions or spinal injuries. It is the most dangerous school activity, but now cheerleading can also be pursued as a professional career. There are a handful of professional cheerleaders around the world.
Anyone who thinks that only macho sports such as surfing or bull riding appear on this top 10 list of the most dangerous extreme sports will be amazed to find cheerleading on this list. But if you consider that the mostly female athletes are thrown into the air meters high, build human pyramids and towers and perform somersaults and other tricks in flight, only to be caught by the colleagues with pinpoint accuracy, then it will be less surprising, that this sport deserves a place on this list.
Cheerleading has the highest catastrophic injury rate among women athletes. The risks of cheerleading were most recently highlighted when Kristi Yamaoka, a cheerleader from Southern Illinois University, suffered a broken vertebra when she hit her head after falling from a human pyramid. She also had a concussion and bruised lung. The fall occurred when Yamaoka lost his balance during a basketball game between Southern Illinois University and Bradley University on March 5, 2006 at the Savvis Center in St. Louis. The fall received additional attention because Yamaoka continued to perform the movements while she was carried off the field. Yamaoka has since recovered completely.
Cheerleading is an activity in which the participants (so-called “cheerleaders”) cheer on their team for encouragement. The term and activity encompasses chants and dances to extreme acrobatic elements. The purpose of cheerleading is to motivate sports teams and to entertain the audience. Performances usually last between one and three minutes.
Cheerleading has its origins in the United States and remains largely confined to the United States. An estimated 1.5 million cheerleaders participate in all-star cheerleading. The worldwide fame of cheerleading was promoted in addition to many film appearances by the broadcast of the international cheerleading competition by ESPN and the worldwide release of the 2000 film Bring It On. Partly due to these influences, there are now an estimated 100,000 participants in Australia, Canada, China, Colombia, Finland, France, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and also Germany.
Due to the dangerous nature of this sport and the extreme acrobatics without any safety precautions, cheerleading undoubtedly deserves a place on our list of the most extreme sports in the world and thus our place 6.
5th place: extreme surfing
Surfing is great fun and almost limitless joy. Only the best surfers with a lot of courage and experience can risk riding the huge 15-meter waves. These monster waves can penetrate the country for miles and not only destroy life on the coasts. This enormous force can of course also kill the surfers or bury them deep under water, where they drown or hit hidden rocks.
If the foot strap is stuck, it is carried away with a force that can tear down entire house structures in a matter of seconds. Sharks are often attracted, which increases the dangers. The romantic image of surfing with big waves with tanned, sporty types and hot girls in bikini is not inaccurate, but this sport has a dark side and is one of the most dangerous extreme sports in the world. Most survivors of an accident stay out of the water for months if they are lucky enough to have jumped off the bat.
Big wave surfing is a discipline of surfing in which surf maestros are paddled or pulled on waves at least 6 meters high to surf them. The most coveted trophy is an intimidating 30-meter wave that offers a price of $ 100,000 for the first person to ride such a wave. One of the greatest dangers of this sport is drowning due to immersion and the pull of the current, or even hitting your head against hidden underwater rocks.
Big wave surfing is a discipline within surfing in which experienced surfers paddle or are towed onto waves with a height of at least 6.2 m on surfboards known as “guns” or towboards. The size of the board needed to successfully surf these waves depends on the wave size and the technique with which the surfer rides the wave. A larger, longer board allows a rider to paddle fast enough to catch the wave and has the advantage of being more stable, but it also limits maneuverability and surfing speed.
Here is an impressive highlight video on YouTube:
In 1992, big wave surfers such as Laird Hamilton and Darrick Doerner introduced cross-over sport tow-in surfing. While many drivers still participate in both sports, they remain very different activities. This type of surfing consists of being dragged into massive waves with the jet ski in order to achieve the speed required for a successful ride. Tow-in surfing has also revolutionized board size, allowing surfers to swap their bulky 12-foot boards for lightweight 7-foot boards that provide more speed and easier maneuverability in waves over 6 meters. This form of surfing allowed surfers to ride waves over 15 meters high.
The name is self-explanatory, but also misleading. These waves are not big, they are monstrous. Big Wave Surfing refers to surfing on monster waves from 20 feet (approx. 6m) high. These are strong waves that can pull surfers deep into the dark ocean with the brutal force of nature (as was the fate of the famous Mark Foo) or destroy their eardrums. An Australian study found that only 2% of surfers wear helmets. Sometimes the surfboards prove themselves to be a lethal weapon. Big wave surfers have a reputation for being a little crazy for a reason.
Drowning, being dragged down by the current, hitting your head against hidden rocks, or being hit by the board that you should be surfing on elegantly, is what extreme surfers put up with in search of the ultimate wave and adrenaline rush. However, the hunt for the 100-foot wave is not yet complete, which may not come as a surprise, even if the winner will receive $ 100,000, sponsored by board manufacturer Billabong.
When the waves break, a breaking wave can push surfers 6 to 15 meters below the surface. Once they stop spinning, they need to quickly regain their balance and figure out where to go to the surface. Surfers may have less than 20 seconds to get to the surface before the next wave hits them. In addition, the water pressure at this depth can be strong enough to damage the eardrum. Strong currents and water influences at these depths can also throw a surfer into a reef or into the ocean floor, which can lead to serious injuries or even death.
One of the greatest dangers is the risk of being submerged by two or more successive waves. Getting through a triple hold down is extremely difficult and surfers must be prepared to deal with these situations.
A major controversy between big wave surfers is the need for a foot strap on the surfboard. In many cases, the leash can do more harm than good to a surfer by catching and holding it under water and reducing its ability to fight on the surface.
These dangers have killed several big wave surfers. Some of the most notable are Mark Foo, who died on December 23, 1994 while surfing the famous California surf spot “Mavericks”.
While surfing is a popular recreational sport, big wave surfing is a discipline of surfing in which the surfing experts paddle or are pulled into huge waves that are at least 20 feet high. The hunt continues after the wave with an intimidating height of 100 feet. And the most famous competition, the Billabong XXL, offers $ 100,000 in prize money. Some of the other top events offer huge prize money, like $ 70,000 for the Tow-In World Cup in Maui and $ 65,000 for the Quiksilver Waimea Bay Contest.
No doubt that extreme surfing has to appear on this list of extreme sports, 5th place for us in the list, even if one could argue that it should be placed even higher.
4th place: cave diving / cave diving
All types of diving are dangerous, the depths of the sea are adamant and scary. This is exactly why some extreme athletes are drawn into the depths, and we have looked at the most dangerous types of diving here.
Scuba diving is an underwater sport that is becoming increasingly popular worldwide. This recreational sport involves using the SCUBA device, a self-contained scuba that allows you to stay underwater long enough to enjoy the tranquil beauty of marine life. While for some, the attraction of diving is the attraction of underwater life, for others it is the thrill of exploring a wreck or a cave. The main danger in this sport lies in the pressure changes. These changes in pressure may damage the lungs, eardrum, or sinuses. Prolonged exposure to excessive pressure can lead to the formation of nitrogen and helium in our bloodstream, which can damage tissue, clog small blood vessels, or even stop blood supply.
If the ascent from a dive is too fast, it can lead to decompression sickness and spinal cord, brain and lung failure. There is also a risk of being attacked by stray sharks or other underwater creatures.
Aside from the obvious risk of drowning, diving can kill in so many ways. You could show up too quickly, it could be a bad mix in the tank, you could hit your head on a rock, but there is always a way to the surface. It is different with cave diving.
Cave diving is an unusual sport that involves diving into underwater caves that are at least partially filled with water. In this sport, the usual diving equipment is used in special configurations. In addition, due to the different circumstances of sport, cave diving also requires the use of a variety of other equipment.
Cave diving can bring some life-threatening dangers, the greatest of which can be caused by light failure and poor visibility, which can ultimately lead to separation from the partner. Loss of air is another danger, especially because you can’t just go to the surface to catch air without smashing your head.
Cave diving can be used as an extreme sport to explore flooded caves for scientific research or to search for and recover divers who have been lost while diving for one of these reasons. The equipment used varies depending on the circumstances, ranging from holding your breath to supplying oxygen from the surface. However, almost all cave dives are carried out with diving equipment, often in special configurations with redundancies such as a sidemount or backmount twin set. Recreational cave diving is generally considered a type of technical diving because there is no clear surface during large parts of the dive and decompression often occurs.
In the United Kingdom, cave diving developed from local mining activity. Its origins in the United States are more closely related to scuba diving. There are relatively few cave divers worldwide. This is due in part to the special equipment and skills required and in part to the high potential risks from the specific environment.
Despite these risks, water-filled caves attract divers and speleologists due to their often unexplored nature and pose a technical challenge for divers. Underwater caves have a variety of physical characteristics and can contain fauna that cannot be found elsewhere.
Hypothermia, loss of oxygen, separation from your diving partner, poor visibility and light failure are just some of the dangers in this unusual sport. The National Speleological Society defines a successful dive as “one from which you return”. In contrast to diving on the high seas, you cannot simply climb up. According to the San Marcos Area Recovery Team in Texas, more than 500 people have died in cave diving accidents in Florida, Mexico and the Caribbean alone since 1960. Experience does not guarantee survival since many of the victims were instructors and technical divers.
There are many things that can go wrong with cave diving if you get lost in dark, sinuous caves beneath the surface of the sea and have to rely on the equipment not to fail with its limited amount of oxygen and finding your way back in time. Not to mention the abundance of unfriendly sea creatures that can be found in some caves. The base jumper’s safe landing depends on the opening of the parachute, while the cave diver’s return depends on what he discovers below. Any type of diving is very dangerous, but cave diving is the most risky by far, making it fourth on our list of the ten most dangerous extreme sports.
3rd place: bull riding / bullfighting / Pamplona
This will be a longer entry as we will present several sports and events here. However, they all have one thing in common: the encounter between man and bull. It seems to be a cross-cultural issue, an obsession with the massive farm animal.
First of all, to the most controversial form, the bullfighting known in Europe, mainly from Spain, which is protected as a cultural heritage, but is also condemned by animal rights activists and a large public for the brutality against the animals.
It is an archaic sport, but it is still celebrated all over the world. For some reason, people think it is a great idea to challenge, irritate, play with, and ultimately stab a two-pound, creature that has very sharp horns and can crush a human body. Dozens of injuries occur every year in professional bullfighting. However, this number could be significantly higher since many incidents are not registered anywhere. If you add the element of a weapon, bullfighting appears far more dangerous than bull riding.
Nevertheless, due to the organized competitions and the helpers and safety precautions, there are fewer deaths than with the bull riding, which is particularly popular in the USA.
We’re talking about rodeo sport, where you have to sit on a bull for as long as possible while the cop tries to throw the rider off. The mere thought of climbing a bull weighing up to 1000kg causes absolute horror in normal people. Therefore, there is probably not much to say about the dangers associated with sport. Bull riding is one of the most dangerous sports in the world, with neck, head and spine injuries and, of course, serious injuries from contact with the horns occurring regularly. Bull trampling poses an even greater danger than horns. In 1989, after a bull pierced the heart of Cowboys Lane Frost, protective vests made of special protective material were required.
The final fate of the driver depends on the position of the landing. He’s lucky if he doesn’t hit the ground flat or get caught in his horns to be thrown up again with another big throw. Sometimes the bull goes on a real hunt when the rider lands upright in range. Broken jaws, ribs and collarbones are common. The other participants draw the bull’s attention, otherwise this sport would cause a lot more bloodshed to the riders. In short, this is an adrenaline-ridden, extremely dangerous sport that demands everything from the rider in terms of concentration and body control, but there is always the certain unpredictable element
There is a professional bull riding organization that looks after the sport that is very popular in the United States, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Canada, Argentina, Mexico, Nicaragua, Brazil, New Zealand and Australia. The risk factor in this game can be seen from the fact that even the best rodeo riders can only stand on the bull’s back for 8 seconds. People don’t make it that long and are thrown into the air earlier with wild violence. In any case, the end is the same, the fall or flight from the bull is inevitable.
And that’s not all, there is a possibility that the angry bull will attack the rider to get him done. This sport is not even safe for the spectators watching from the stands. If any of these animals weighing up to a ton trample on you, the next trip you take will be in an ambulance or hearse.
This sport is usually a big favorite among men who like to flaunt their high testosterone levels so much that they’re willing to take any chances.
For the really passionate, however, this sport is an art. In rodeo schools there are courses for those who want to learn this deadly sport.
Bull running from Pamplona
The San Fermin Festival, or the running of the bulls, as it is popularly known, takes place on July 6th in Pamplona, Spain. It was originally the transportation route for bulls, from the place where they were bred to the bullring where they were to be slaughtered. Youngsters jumped next to these bulls to demonstrate their bravery. Over the years, it developed into a festival characterized by music, dance and markets. The run starts after the first two missiles and ends with the third and fourth missiles, which signal that the bulls have entered the bullring. The dangers of running with bulls are unimaginably great. Every year, an average of 50-100 people suffer injuries such as internal bleeding,
Bull running (Encierro in Spanish) is a crazy tradition and takes place in several other places, with Pamplona in Spain being the most famous of all Encierros. The writer Ernest Hemingway described this spectacle in two of his works. Just like bullfighting, bull running is the subject of heated debates between animal rights activists and sports lovers. That being said, around 300 people are injured worldwide every year and several are killed in bull races.
However, there is an even more extreme variant, which comes from the state of Tamil Nadu in India, and in a way combines bull riding and bullfighting.
Jallikattu, also known as bull taming, is another sport where bulls are used, although it takes place on a different continent with different rules. This sport, which took place in villages across the Indian state of Tamil Nadu (formerly Madras) during the Pongal Festival (traditional harvest festival of the region), is a battle in which only one emerges victorious – man or bull. In one form of this sport, a person has to hold onto the bull for a certain time or distance in order to win, while in another variant of this game the bull is released into the open field, with the participants trying to defeat the bull. The dangers to be expected are many and 200 people have died in this sport in the past two decades.
The different forms of bull sport are diverse and different, but they all have one thing in common: They are incredibly dangerous, daring extreme sports, and with us, bull riding ranks third for the other spectacles described here as the third most extreme sport in the world.
2nd place: base jumping / wingsuit
This is undoubtedly one of the most dangerous and breathtaking extreme sports you can imagine. Base jumping and above all its most extreme version, the combination with the wingsuit, brings people as close to flying as possible. But even without a wingsuit, jumping off buildings, bridges or cliffs with a parachute is the most dangerous thrill there is.
First of all, the risks start with the parachute, but this also applies to “normal” parachute jumps. There is no guarantee that the glider and the replacement glider will open. Either the jumper will land safely or he will almost certainly find his death. This sport is not only very risky, but also extremely popular and attracts a large number of people. At the same time, base jumping has cost more than 180 lives since its inception in 1980, making it one of the most dangerous extreme sports.
Another, still dangerous variant of base jumping is the use of a wingsuit during the jump. With this special suit you can fly through the air at breathtaking speeds, practiced wingsuit pilots manage to fly precisely through narrow crevices or the like, with a few centimeters of space on both sides.
You only have to watch a video, it is actually enough if you only look at the wingsuit plane with its equipment before you take off to understand why this sport is extremely dangerous and kills many lives every year. The reasons for this are mostly a lack of skill, self-overestimation and mistakes when using the equipment. A little more attention and care can make this most dangerous sport much safer.
Almost everyone who does not suffer from acute fear of heights and likes a certain thrill has certainly thought about jumping out of a plane with a parachute. For many this is apparently not extreme enough and therefore they choose cliffs and artificial objects such as towers or antenna masts. Jumping from lower altitudes may sound safer to the layman, but in reality they are more difficult to handle because there is practically no time to deploy the parachutes or respond to problems. BASE is actually an abbreviation for the type of objects that people jump off. It stands for buildings (buildings), antenna masts or towers (antenna), structures spanned over abysses such as bridges (span) and earth (natural formations such as cliffs, gorges, etc., earth).
BASE jumping is essentially skydiving from the above structures instead of an airplane. As exciting as it sounds to race through the air as the wind blows through your hair, it often ends in death. Apart from the obvious danger of jumping from a height of several hundred meters, there is a risk that the wind will push them against the building from which they jumped or against other obstacles. In fact, this sport is illegal in many parts of the world, including the United States, except at organized events such as B. West Virginia Bridge Day. The highest BASE jump in the world to date was recorded by the Petronas twin towers in Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia with a height of 452 meters.
Wingsuit Flying (or Wingsuiting) is the sport of flying through the air with a wingsuit that gives the human body more surface to significantly increase buoyancy. The modern wingsuit, which was first developed in the late 90s, creates a surface with fabric between the legs and under the arms. Wingsuits are sometimes called “Birdman Suits” (after the makers of the first commercially available wingsuit), “Squirrel Suits” (due to their resemblance to the squirrel) and “Bat Suits” (due to their resemblance to the animal or perhaps the superhero) designated.
Here are a few incredible shots that make you dream and shiver at the same time:
A wingsuit flight usually ends with the parachute being released. Therefore, a wingsuit can be flown from any point that is high enough for flight and parachute use – usually from an airplane or a BASE jump point such as a high cliff or mountain peak. The wingsuit pilot wears parachute equipment that was specially developed for skydiving or BASE jumping. While the parachute flight is normal, the pilot opens his arms after the jump to get into the almost horizontal flight, where extreme speeds (on average approx. 160 km / h!) Are reached and the pilot can perform amazingly precise flight maneuvers with a lot of practice .
It is called “extreme sport”, but is also ridiculed by many as an “attempted suicide”. The participants throw themselves from a high jump location such as a building, a bridge, an antenna or a cliff. About 5 to 15 people who take part in this deadly sport die each year. Since 1981, 230 deaths have been recorded in the “BASE Fatality List” published in 1981. This puts base jumping and, above all, the variant combined with the wingsuit in second place on our list of the most dangerous extreme sports.
1st place: rock climbing / extreme mountaineering
Mountaineering and climbing includes a number of activities that involve climbing and climbing mountains. We will focus on three categories here, extreme mountaineering, especially climbing the “eight-thousanders”, rock climbing and probably the most dangerous form of climbing, “free solo”.
The high peaks have always been a fascination and challenge for people, such as climbing the K2 or Mount Everest, and it takes extreme nerve and determination to climb just one or even all of the 10 highest mountain peaks. In addition to the usual climbing risks, people often have to climb over frozen corpses on their way over mountain plateaus, valley glaciers and ice rivers. Every step up there is final, because gravity doesn’t stop at climbers.
When they reach the top, they can enjoy your success. At this point, the work is only half done, because the return will not be much easier. UV radiation can damage your eyesight, and this can lead to carelessness. You can never count on medical help, rescue or even helicopter support, which is always uncertain in a rapidly changing climate. The mortality rate drops, but is one death per six summit climbs. This very popular and dangerous sport is a real test of the physical and mental strength of the climber.
Mountaineering is also often referred to as alpinism, although the use of the term can vary between countries and eras.
It is not difficult to understand that mountaineering essentially involves the risky activity of climbing up and down the highest natural rock, ie mountains. Every element of this activity is risky. The climber can suffer various physical injuries from falls during severe physical exertion, e.g. B. ankle sprains, sprained joints, ligament tears, broken bones, back injuries, concussions or frostbite. Weather changes can be fatal, you can easily get off the track, and deaths are therefore quite common.
It is estimated that one climber dies from six successful Everest climbers. Even worse, the climbers on the way up are often greeted by frozen corpses of other climbers. Threats from hypoxia, hypothermia, frostbite and pneumonia are always around the corner. Helicopter rescues are not always possible, so even a simple injury can be fatal. If climbers lose their goggles, there is a possibility that their cornea will be burned by excessive UV radiation. Although mortality rates have decreased since 1990 (mainly due to the introduction of better safety equipment), around 179 of the 1300 Everest climbers have lost their lives to date. In 2000, 24 deaths were reported in the United States after accidents in North American mountaineering.
Rock climbing is a sport in which participants climb up, down, or over natural rock formations or artificial rock faces. The goal is to reach the top of a formation or the end point of a normally predefined route without falling. Professional climbing competitions aim to either complete the route in the shortest possible time or to reach the most distant point on an increasingly difficult route.
Rock climbing is a very hard and exciting sport, but it results in a high death toll. The spirits and physical strength must be at the absolute highest level during the ascent. Both are inevitably at the lowest level even with the best climbers when descending. The slippery paths, the sudden weather fluctuations and the tiredness make the descent even more dangerous. Medical help is almost impossible up there because helicopter help is always uncertain.
Climbing is a physically and mentally demanding sport that often tests a climber’s strength, endurance, flexibility and balance, as well as mental control. It can be a dangerous activity, and knowing the right climbing techniques and using special climbing equipment is essential for safe routes.
As far as insurance premiums are concerned, climbers pay the highest premiums in many countries, since this sport is classified by the insurance companies in the highest danger class. In the United States alone, climbing claims about 20 lives each year. So you can imagine how many there must be around the world.
There are a thousand ways to imagine how someone could die on a mountaintop. You can be hit by an avalanche, slide off a steep slope, fall into a crack or simply make the wrong step while walking the ice-covered paths. However, most deaths occur on groomed climbing trails classified as mild to moderate. An apparently simple run can end tragically in an instant, especially by overestimating your own abilities.
Free solo is a form of climbing where the climber climbs alone without using ropes, belts or other protective equipment, which means he has to rely entirely on his own strength and abilities. Unlike bouldering, free soloists climb to dangerous heights where a fall would result in serious injury or even death. With ordinary free climbing (although not on your own), safety equipment is often used to protect against falls, but this must not assist the climber when climbing, descending or descending sideways.
This great 360 ° video shows the first ascent of the famous “El Capitan” in Yosemite National Park in the USA by Alex Honnold:
Since there are several national parks in Germany and Austria that offer good climbing areas, there are alsoseveral mountaineering schools that offer different courses. Especially in the Alps, of course, climbing is a popular and popular sport. Mountaineering and the various elements of climbing such as free climbing as a category definitely deserve its place among the most dangerous extreme sports, and due to the extremely high number of fatalities, climbing and extreme mountaineering are on the top of this list.