The Science Behind Why We Love Risk
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 the “high” extreme sports bring, some report it helps them feel closer to nature, more self-aware, at peace and even transcendent.
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“Far from the traditional risk-focused assumptions, extreme sports participation facilitates more positive psychol..."
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.
“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
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.