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What Motivates People to Do Extreme Sports?

https://psychcentral.com/news/2017/05/11/what-motivates-people-to-participate-in-extreme-sports/120361.html

psychcentral.com

What Motivates People to Do Extreme Sports?
New research debunks the myth that those who participate in extreme sports are adrenaline junkies with a death wish. Instead, researchers at Queensland University of Technology say that those who participate in extreme sports do it to have an experience that is life-changing.

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“Far from the traditional risk-focused assumptions, extreme sports participation facilitates more positive psychological experiences and express human values such as humility, harmony, creativity, spirituality, and a vital sense of self that enriches everyday life.”

Robert Schweitzer - psychologist

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Life-Changing Power Of Extreme Sports

Life-Changing Power Of Extreme Sports

Those who practice life-threatening extreme sports do it to have an experience that is life-changing, to feel alive and have an almost transcendental sensorial clarity.

Extreme sports have the potential to induce powerful and meaningful non-ordinary states of consciousness. They have been shown to be affirmative of life and the potential for transformation.

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“My vision is sharper, and I’m more sensitive to sounds, my sense of balance and the beauty all around me. … Something sparkles in my mind, and then nothing else in life matters.”

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“The activity itself enables experiences that are beyond the everyday. People talk about their senses being alive, about being able to see things much more clearly. It gives them a glimpse of wh...

“The activity itself enables experiences that are beyond the everyday. People talk about their senses being alive, about being able to see things much more clearly. It gives them a glimpse of what it means to be human as in the capacities they have that we don’t tap into in everyday life.”

 - Eric Brymer, psychologist, on the effects of extreme-sports

Extreme Sports Athletes

Many extreme athletes are careful and thoughtful planners, and avoid thrill-seekers when possible.

Most research that links extreme-sports to thrill-seeking, hedonism, and a taste for risk, was done using young subjects, who tend to be impulsive and poor decision-makers regardless.

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The Motivation Behind Extreme Sports

One of the most powerful motivators is the satisfaction that comes from succeeding at a hard sport and from the grinding it requires. Although some are looking just for th...

Extreme Sports And Risk

Researchers found that extreme sports athletes often don’t consider their sports risky, and dedicate a lot of time studying and minimizing risks. They believe they have done all they can to mitigate risks through hard work and focus. 

Near-death experiences (NDEs)

Near-death experiences (NDEs)

NDEs are triggered during a life-threatening situation when the body is injured by blunt trauma, e.g., a heart attack or shock.

Many survivors tell of leaving their damaged...

Negative NDEs experiences

Not all NDEs are positive - some can be frightening, with intense terror, anguish, loneliness, and despair. Distressing NDEs are underreported because of shame, social stigma, and pressure to conform to the positive NDEs.

A close encounter with death reminds us of the fragility of life and can reveal the layers of psychological suppression that prevents us from these uncomfortable thoughts.

The NDE phenomenon

A 2017 study found that NDEs were recalled with greater clarity and detail than either real or imagined situations were. In other words, NDEs were remembered as being more real than life itself.

NDEs are no more likely to occur in devout believers than in secular or nonpracticing subjects.