Are extreme sports actually sports, an art form or a way of life? Whatever the answer may be, the various types of extreme sports possess common characteristics, such as creativity, freedom and originality. As extreme sports continue to gather momentum in Israel, the water and urban fields engage the largest numbers of participants.
Surfing originated among the Polynesian inhabitants of Hawaii who worshipped the sea and its power. Surfing was part of their religion. In 1910, Americans began to visit the islands and quickly caught "surfing fever". Surfboard design and production have progressed thanks to technological innovation and athletes have improved their techniques, thus creating more aggressive surfing. Surfing has gone from focusing on high waves to deeper "tube riding" (surfing inside hollow "tube" or "barrel" waves). The core of Israeli surfing began in the 1960's when a Jewish doctor named Dorian Paskowitz taught Tel Aviv's life guards to surf.
Bicycle racing and road biking have been around for many years, but it was not until the early 1970's that a group of rebellious youths from the Marin, California area tried riding bikes off -road. Today, mountain biking is one of the most popular leisure sports in the world. However, it is a broad realm, encompassing various fields: competitive "cross country" (long endurance races and marathons), "downhill" (downhill competitions, in which competitors must traverse a course in the fastest possible time) and "free ride" (a field in which mountain bike riders jump and perform various acrobatic stunts). Israel's mountain bike league and the Israel Cycling Federation hold many competitions throughout the year.
The history of skydiving is directly linked to man's wish to fly. Parachutes are mentioned in Chinese writings and in written works by Leonardo de Vinci, as well as being documented in other places around the world. The development of aviation accelerated the development of skydiving, which was adopted as an official sport by the U.S. Aviation Organization in 1948. In that same year, Leo Valentine developed improved techniques for controlling the body while falling, which came to serve as cornerstones of the field. Skydiving encompasses four main disciplines, according to which skydivers train and compete: Relative Work, Free Style, Sky Surfing and Free Flying. Israel's two skydiving clubs hold annual skydiving competitions.
Lior Zelering, Editor Adrenaline magazine