By Niharika Nigam,
Director Business Development, Jumpin Heights.
Adventure sports or extreme sports are quickly gaining momentum in India, with millennials opting for activities like skydiving and parasailing. Due to the rising demand, the Ministry of Tourism in India has now recognised ‘Adventure Tourism’ as a ‘Niche Tourism’ to attract more people of specific interest. Especially, adventure sports allow people to live life to the fullest. The excitement, thrill and the adrenaline rush are the main factors that have attributed to the popularity of extreme sports. What’s more, unlike earlier times, you don’t need to spend a bomb to try out adventure sports. Albeit the options are plenty, following are the top five adventure sports you should never miss in life.
While it may not be everyone’s cup of tea, bungee jumping has always been a top pick for adventure enthusiasts. The process of bungee jumping involves three steps; diving down a considerable height with rubber chords tied to the ankles, free falling and finally rebound. Whether it’s your first time or your twentieth, this adventure sport never fails to ignite the feelings of exhilaration and excitement. Other activities like giant swing and flying fox are also immensely popular. There are several bungee jumping spots in all corners of India where you can take a leap of faith. Rishikesh has the highest bungee jumping spot in the country, and is often frequented by celebrities and media. If you have never done it before, you can gather courage from your experienced peers.
Skydiving without a doubt deserves a place in the list of must-try adventure sports. While the thought of jumping out of a moving plane mid-air may seem scary, skydiving gives an unmatchable sense of euphoria of freefall. Contrary to common notion, anyone regardless of their gender or age can try skydiving. There are numerous reasons why skydiving has been the favourite among adrenaline junkies; it makes you feel empowered, invincible and truly liberated. Furthermore, through skydiving, many have been able to conquer their fear of height. Since skydiving is the closest to one will ever get to flying, it should be on everyone’s bucket list. Until you earn a certificate in skydiving, it is mandatory to jump in tandem where a professional instructor will be attached to you with a harness.
Zip lining is a growing trend across the world and for all the right reasons. Once used only as a means of transportation in remote areas, zip lining has now emerged as an extremely popular outdoor activity in adventure camps. In India, zip lining is a comparatively new concept but it is catching up fast. Barring the monsoon months, you can go zip lining anytime around the year. You can zip line over rivers and canyons as well. Relatively milder, this sport is known for the calming effects on the minds that zipping through natural lush landscaped can have, with a rush of adrenaline at the time of rolling down initially. If you are a first-timer looking for a dose of adrenaline or two, zip lining is the perfect adventure sport for you.
You may have tried your hands at skydiving or zip lining, but your adventure saga will remain incomplete without scuba diving. Scuba diving provides you with a rare opportunity to explore the mysterious world under the sea. From colourful corals to exquisite deep sea creatures, you will get a chance to enjoy a close look at a wide range of underwater flora and fauna. Other than that, the feeling of being underwater is itself therapeutic. In fact, the experience can prove to be very soothing for those suffering from anxiety or PTSD. While scuba diving may seem challenging initially, it is quite easy to learn under the right instructor. It is the exploration of a while different ecosystem- an experience unmatched by any other.
Last but not the least; Skiing is another adventure sport that you should not miss out. From Kate Middleton to Novak Djokovic, famous celebrities are often seen in skiing in well-known ski resorts around the globe. Be it for the breathtaking views or the adrenaline rush, skiing will definitely make you feel refreshed. In India, skiing has been gaining momentum in the last few years. Thanks to the Himalayan range that is widespread across the northern region of India, there are ample destinations of skiing in the states including Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Uttaranchal. If you are physically sound, you just need to strap in your skiing gears and enjoy a blissful experience with snow.
Apart from these, you can also go for less trying adventure sports that may be less demanding. Water rafting, kayaking, paragliding are some of the options for beginners. Remember, due to the nature of these sports, always ensure the credibility and safety standards of the company you choose to do these with, and never try them out unsupervised. Make sure you have an experienced instructor, the right safety gear and suitable attire. If you have any health issues like vertigo, asthma, acrophobia or heart diseases, disclose it to your instructor at the beginning. Most importantly, be mentally prepared before attempting extreme sports. Once all the precaution has been taken, let the experience take over.