What do rivers, volcanos, air, sand dunes and massive waves have to do with each other?
That’s easy—they are all places that extreme boardsports happen! There are close to 30 different boardsports, and don’t worry, we won’t be covering them all in this article—but for now, let’s take a look at the top eight most extreme boardsports in the world. From standing, laying down and kneeling to surfing sand, rivers, big waves, volcanos and being pulled through the air, the sky’s the limit when it comes to the world of extreme board sports. So get ready, get set, and let’s dive – or jump, surf, or slide—our way into it.
What Are Boardsports?
Simply put, a board sport is simply a sport involving a board. The most common examples are well-known sports like skateboarding, surfing or snowboarding, but those are just scratching the surface of the vast array of board sports that people partake in every day.
Boardsports are divided into four different categories, depending on the environment: Land, Air, Snow, and Water. Perhaps someone will come up with an extreme board sport that involves fire, and we’ll be able to have all major elements. But for now, the first on our list is as close to fire as we are going to get!
This sport definite is focusing on the “extreme” part of extreme sports, and for good reason. If surfing 70-foot waves is a little too low-key for you or snowboarding isn’t cool enough, perhaps surfing down a volcano will help satisfy your need for speed and thrill. Don’t believe us? Check out the video below to see it in action.
What do you get when you blend together surfing, wakeboarding and waterskiing? The answer is Kneeboarding. Kneeboarding is a sport invented by Southern California surfers on the off time of the surf, when the water was flat, as an alternative to wakeboarding and water-skiing. It started out as an athlete kneeling on the board while being towed behind a boat, but today has branched off into its own style of surfing, too.
Ever want to go snowboarding, but without the cold weather? Then Mountainboarding is the sport for you. Developed by snowboarders during the off season, mountain boarding is a well-established board sport that borrows from skateboarding and snowboarding to create the ultimate land board sport. Also known as dirt boarding or all-terrain boarding, take to the hills or all mountain biking trails in lieu of the slopes or skate parks, like you would for snowboarding and skateboarding.
Bodyboarding takes a twist on the surfing world: Simply put, bodyboarding is riding waves in a prone position (laying stomach down) on your board. The sport got its start in the islands of the Pacific, where the Polynesian people were the first to develop the basis of the sport we know today. It’s suggested that the age-old practice of catching waves in a prone style actually lead to people doing stand-up riding, meaning that bodyboarding may be far older than surfing its self.
Today, bodyboarders use a square-nosed, soft and flexible board ranging between 33” and 46”. Bodyboarding has become practiced worldwide, and even though surfing is much more popular, bodyboarding has been picking up steam and is a growing watersport.
Snowboarding started out as one of the original extreme sports, and has grown to be one of the biggest sports in the world, gaining worldwide attention. Simply put, snowboarding is when you ride a board down snow-covered slopes, preforming jumps and extreme maneuvers that make your heart skip a beat.
Riverboarding is one of the newer sports on this list—and it looks like a blast! Similar to bodyboarding, riverboarding is when you lie prone on your board—the difference being that you are not in the sea, but riding down rapid rivers and fast moving whitewater, which is definitely a change from the ocean scene. Some say it’s more thrilling and adrenaline than other water sports, as you are crashing straight through and haphazardly making your way through some of the most action packed rivers, it makes for an awesome adventure for sure.
Snowkiting is quite similar to kitesurfing – the main difference is that one is performed on snow, and the other is on the water. With snow kiting, you don’t need to worry about catching wave, deep water or crowded beaches—all you need is a snow covered field and frozen lake with strong winds, and you are off and ready to go! Get a kite and a snowboard, and you’ll have the time of your life surfing the snow. The one thing to keep in mind is that there is a small learning curve as it is more difficult to maintain your balance when snow kiting. With normal snowboarding, you can move your arms for balancing, but with snow kiting, your arms will be busy controlling the kite.
While never really considered an official sport, it has grown tremendously in recent times—and is one of the oldest board sports in the world. Sandboarding is exactly would it sounds like—you are literally surfing sand! Wherever there are large sand dunes, there’s a good chance that and sandboarding is allowed. It’s one of the most exciting and exhilarating outdoor activities out there, so grab your board (or rent one locally to the dunes) and get ready for adventure! From coastal dunes or deep in the deserts, sandboarding takes place in a world all of it’s own.
And there you have it, 8 of the most exciting boardsports to happen on the planet! Which will you be trying out first? There’s something for everyone, no matter if you enjoy being in the water, flying through the air or keeping your feet firmly planted on the ground. Which will you be practicing first?
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