5 ways to take up an extreme sport
From the queens of the track, field and slope, adventurous female athletes were at the heart of design inspiration for the new Winter collection. Whether it’s scaling the highest peaks or becoming the first woman to cross a dangerous ocean stretch, athletes including Diana Nyad and F1’s Susie Wolff are showing the boys how it’s done. If, like our seasonal muses, you have a taste for adventure and want to sample the endorphin rush that goes with the world’s wildest extreme sports, then follow our guide below and take the first step today.
There are few greater sensations of freedom than swimming in the deepest depths, with no sound but the stillness of the water around you. Freediving is an exhilarating way to explore your limits and push your physical performance to new levels, descending to the deepest depth or going the longest distance in a single breath. Described by the New York Times as the ‘second most dangerous sport after skyscraper parachuting’, this is not a something we recommend trying alone (our ambassador Rebecca Coales recently spoke about her experience within the freediving community). To join a community of like-minded underwater adventurers, head to certified dive centers around the world, such as London Freediving and Freedive NYC.
Is one challenge a day simply not enough to test your willpower? For those who dare to set the bar higher, there’s no feat quite like the Iron Man. A 2.4 mile-swim, 112 mile bike ride and 26 mile run presents plenty of opportunity to identify your greatest strength, and indeed your biggest weakness. To help build up your endurance, several Sweaty Betty boutiques host a weekly run club where you can meet similarly inclined cardio fiends with whom to clock up the miles. Maximise your comfort on the move with Sweaty Betty's essential endurance accessories, including the blister resistant socks, structured Asics Gel Kayano 22s and Ultra Run Bra (pictured from left to right).
Ever since Nicola Adams triumphantly became the first British woman to win an Olympic boxing title in 2012, there has been a significant increase in the number of women taking to the ring. Even the most traditional of boxing gyms are now opening their doors to women, and boutique fitness studios are transforming the traditional concrete boxing gym into a more luxurious experience altogether. London’s 1Rebel’s new Rumble class combines the HIIT benefits of a boxing workout with luxurious facilities and a convenient post-workout juice bar. Meanwhile, New York’s Church Street Gym has introduced women-only classes and Prevail Los Angeles is loved by locals for its killer kickboxing sessions.
Blue sky sports
With extreme sports, the sky is the limit. Especially when the itinerary includes the likes of parachute jumping and wingboarding (surfing the sky on an airplane wing). Californian adrenaline junkies often head to San Diego or Orange County for jet packing, parasailing and zip lining, while Red Letter Days in the UK and Cloud9 Living in New York offer a blue sky adrenaline rush to high-fliers from less tropical climes.
Whether it’s racing down a mountain or trying new tricks at the BMX park, taking your bike play to new extremes promises to make your heart rate soar and fill your stomach with those pre-challenge butterflies. In the UK alone, there are more than 50 dedicated off-road cycling tracks (find your nearest one here). If you live on the other side of the Atlantic, USA BMX is the go-to destination to find a club or coach near you.
Nadia wears Trail Thermal Running Tights, Optimal Training Hoody, Elements Windproof Gloves and Gel DS Trainer 20 NC Asics