Extreme sports include an element of speed, height, physical exertion, or perceived danger. Examples include skydiving, snowboarding, high-altitude mountain climbing, and white-water rafting. Undeniably adrenaline-inducing, exhilarating, and even a little scary, performing extreme sports can benefit your health. In this post, we take a look at some of the most significant benefits that participating in extreme sports can have on your health and wellbeing.
Burn Lots of Calories
Although any sporting activity will help you burn calories and keep away excess body fat, extreme sports help you burn many more calories than many standard exercises. For example, skateboarders can burn up to 500 calories per hour while riding their board. This is particularly true for skateboarders competing and doing tricks that require speed and skill, but even skateboarding on flat terrain is a great way to burn off calories.
Work Different Muscles
Extreme sports are a great way to get many different muscles working in your body. Because of the physical exertion required to complete extreme sports, you tend to use your muscles in unconventional ways, and your body as a whole gets a complete workout. If we take rock climbing as an example, you are forced to use muscles all over your body, including your fingers, back, legs, neck, arms, etc. Many muscles stretched during an intensive rock-climbing session wouldn’t ordinarily be trained, meaning your body benefits from participating in this extreme sport.
Extreme sports trigger the fight or flight response by their very design, as your body naturally senses danger when you’re about to compete. When you’re about to jump out of a plane to complete a skydive, or you’re about to hit an enormous rapid when white water rafting, you will feel an unparalleled adrenaline rush, which is accompanied by a faster heart rate, dilated pupils, and a change in your breathing pattern. Once completed, your body releases dopamine, the chemical which is associated with pleasure and excitement, similar to what others might experience when betting with a new site or taking other risks. You often hear that extreme sportsmen and women participate in their chosen sport, mainly because of the unique adrenaline rush they get when competing.
Although many people don’t think about it, balance is a skill that you can train and improve by completing particular tasks and sports. The vast majority of extreme sports that you can participate in help you improve your balance. This is undoubtedly the case with snowboarding, high-altitude mountain climbing, and rock climbing, as often good balance is the only thing saving you from a severe accident. Over time your balance will improve, which can help you in many areas of your life, not just while participating in extreme sports.
Increased Mental Focus
Although we’ve predominantly focused on the physical health benefits of extreme sports in this post, they can also have a significant impact on your mental health. Participating in an extreme sport requires a high degree of focus and mental strength, and while competing, you often can’t afford for your mind to veer off from the task at hand. Competing in extreme sports like off-road mountain biking requires excellent mental focus and helps you to train your mind to be mindful and concentrate on the task at hand.