[splitpost intro="true" order="true"]
Why does everyone feel the need to reinvent the wheel when it comes to "action sports"? From horse boarding and jet surfing to xtreme sledding, YouTube is home to a whole host of wild schemes - probably concocted in someone's basement at 3am after one too many beers. The promo videos are even worse, made in the sober light of day and subscribing to the WORST extreme sport cliches in existence.
I'm sure some people will point out that in the early days, snowboarding was also seen as a completely wacko idea. "Ban This Killer Craze" screamed a Daily Mail headline in the early 90s. And early pioneers in the states faced a constant barrage of disbelief - who wants to slide sideways on snow?! But seriously, we can't imagine any of these ever catching on properly. I mean hangboarding? C'mon...
[part title="Extreme Pogoing"]
Extreme Pogoing - or XPogo - really does look as dumb as it sounds. Think teenage boys jumping around, hitting backflips on souped-up versions of the childhood playground toy, the pogo. Here we get to see professional pogoers (yes, they actually do exist) grinding rails and bouncing on top of boxes to win Pogopalooza, the world championships of extreme pogo. Definitely room for some crotch-related injuries here... Ouch.
You may have even actually seen these roaming a street near you. The Snakeboard is a twisted version of the skateboard where riders propel themselves along the flat by shifting their weight from edge to edge. This old-skool promo video from 1994 is an absolute classic with some dude with a lisp in giant baggy 90s shorts, pulled-up socks and Vans telling us there's "no other sport like it". Errrrr.....
[part title="Running on Water"]
A bunch of guys in Portugal with too much time on their hands have harnessed the power of stone-skimming into human form. This vid shows their attempt to run really fast across the surface of the water, Jesus-style. The commentary is rammed full of cliches and, well... it's pretty damn obvious it's not just water keeping them afloat....
[part title="Jet Surfing"]
OK, so maybe not as cringeworthy as the rest. In fact, some of you may be looking for the nearest place to sign up to the nutty new sport of Jet Surfing. These are surfboards powered by two-stroke petrol engines that pull riders along flat water and into waves, using a handheld remote. We like to think of it as the lazy man's surfboard - but saying that, we wouldn't turn down a test ride on one. But can you really see this coming to a beach near you? Us neither.
[part title="Horse Boarding"]
Yep, it's exactly what it sounds like. Strap a four-wheel mountainboard to your feet, attach a tow line to a horse and, um, get dragged along behind it. The idea is competitors race against each other round a 400m track. They say it's the modern equivalent to chariot racing. We say it's pretty lame excuse for an action sport. To top it off, they even have their own British Horse Boarding Association.
Who are these nutters flashing their gold, shiny teeth and riding lilos down a mountain? With the amount of control these guys are demonstrating, they'll be taking out everyone in front of them before careering into the nearest tree well. And skiiers think snowboarders are the terrors of the slopes? Next time you catch someone bellyflopping their way down the mountain like this, give them a kick from us.
[part title="Wheelman Bushpig"]
Man Bear Pig comes to mind when we're faced with this wacky idea for a sport. In fact, Wheelman Bushpig has nothing to do with South Park. The best way to describe it is a miniature motorbike for your feet. Cue all the worst action sports video cliches ever - pumping rock music, girl riding in a bikini, attempted wheelies - all from a device that edges along just above jogging pace. Will it ever catch on? We think not.
This one has clearly has some serious time and money invested in it. The Flyboard is a jet-pack that pumps super fast jets of water out, propelling you into the sky and allowing you to shoot in and out of the water like Flipper. There are more than 2,500 Flyboard owners out there but is a "new extreme sport phenomenon" or just something that looks like it's dropped out of a James Bond parody?
[part title="Xtreme Sled"]
Marketing Mistake #1 - using 'X' when naming a sport does not make it cool. In fact, calling anything 'Xtreme' only has the opposite effect of reducing its fear-factor in the eyes of everyone aside from 12-year-old boys. Introducing the Xtreme Sled, a glorified toboggan with "the handling of a Porsche 911". Apparently it's best used on tarmac roads - with the obvious downside of inevitably ending up under tyres of the nearest car.
[part title="River Bugging"]
This is possibly the weirdest and most unenjoyable sport of them all. River Bugging involves riding down a river in an inflatable armchair with dorky green flippers attached to your feet. It appears you steer by uselessly flapping your arms in the water before inevitably inverting face first like, well, a doomed bug. Plus, they make Marketing Mistake #2 - using The Strokes as your soundtrack also does not an extreme sport make.