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Making a splash - Watersports from around the world
Not everyone wants to spend their holidays relaxing and soaking up the sun while lying on a quiet beach, there are plenty of holiday makers who would rather spend their time splashing around in the water while taking part in many of the watersports that there are available. Whether your budget will take you to Africa where you can dive with the sharks or to sunny Cornwall where you can practice your surfing skills, here are a few of the most popular activities that you can do and some sites that can offer you more information to help you book a trip.
Scuba is actually an acronym for Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus so scuba diving is underwater diving where the diver uses a scuba set to breath underwater. It has become a very popular holiday activity because people want to see the brightly coloured fish swimming in the tropical coral reefs of the Caribbean. However, people looking for more of a thrill choose to go scuba diving in cages so they can come face to face with sharks, but the biggest thrill seeker goes to Richard Presley who has the world record for the longest deep dive: 69 days and 19minutes!
Wind surfing was created in the 60’s by two Californian men. Hoyle Schweitzer was a surfer and Jim Drake, a sailor. They combined the sail and the board to create a new piece of equipment originally referred to a as sail-boarding or board-sailing. Neither name stuck and the term windsurfing was born. Its popularity quickly spread from California to the rest of the world and became an Olympic sport 1984 at the Los Angeles games. The original design of the board has evolved into a style that leaves room for a lot of variation. They can be between 8 to 12ft in height and range from 7 to 18kgs. You can master the basics after a couple of days training but to reach the usual speeds of over 40mph, you will need to put in a lot more time. Active Adventures specialise in windsurfing holidays in Lanzarote and Dahab, Egypt so take a look here for some tips on booking your perfect trip.
If you’ve always wanted to take part in an adventure activity, water-based or not, and just can’t seem to find any like-minded people to do it with, look no further. www.8thdayadventure.co.uk is a membership-based sport, adventure and social club. It’s a lot more fun learning or doing a sport in a friendly and vibrant group atmosphere, and they can often get good group discounts too!
Surfing is a surface water sport that was a central part of ancient Polynesian culture. People go surfing all around the world with the most popular destinations being Hawaii, Bali and California. However, surfing holidays in Portugal and other European destinations are becoming increasingly popular.There are two types of surfing, long boarding and short boarding and surprisingly long boarding is easier because you don’t have to move as fast which makes it the best option for beginners. Once you’ve master the art of surfing you’ll also have to master the lino like ‘Hang Ten’ – when a surfer has all his toes on the nose of the board or ‘Hodad’ – which is the name for a beginner or non-surfer. The only way to learn surfing is to start at the very beginning. Many people learn "bad habits" when they start surfing and these are really difficult to correct as time progresses. If you want to learn to surf (and also the surfing lingo) Errant Surf Holidays is a leading surf travel company tailoring holidays and instruction all over the globe. With a whole range of locations from Bali to Barbados, Morocco to the Maldives.
Academy of Surfing Instructors (www.academyofsurfing.com) is the worlds leading surfing and education organisation. The ASI website has learn to surf books and dvds that can give you background knowledge as well as listing some accredited surf schools so you can get hands on expert tuition. Visit yougosurf.com to find some useful information on the beachfront hotel in Playa Hermosa just 5 minutes south of Playa Jaco. This is a popular Costa Rica All-Inclusive Hotel - See how to win a free all-inclusive 7 day 6 night hotel stay at the hotel
If you really want to take surfing seriously then you should visit action sports fitness to find out about the high performance sports training that Stef Harkon offers the surfing community to give them that extra edge. Another website that you should check out for surfing information is SurfRhythm, it focuses on events, people and culturally relevant surfing information written by a ten year veteran surf mag journalist.
White Water Rafting
The first white water rafting expedition was recorded in 1842 in the USA by Lt Fremont. What began as a number of rubber tubes attached to a floor, has since become a favourite activity of millions of people worldwide. The raft has obviously had a few adjustments to make it a safe piece of equipment to be used in both still and flowing waters and with stringent regulations and precautionary measures in place, the experience can be enjoyed by most people of all ages. Rafts can be enjoyed as a leisurely activity or as a competitive one and often accommodate between 4 and 12 riders. They type of boats you can use vary as much as the unpredictable waters you choose to raft.
For some New Zealand Adventure, take a look at Adventure Junkies. They offer extreme 10 day guided adventure through the South Island of New Zealand. On a daily basis you'll push your limits with white water rafting, skydiving, bungy jumping, heli-hiking, canyoning and much much more! Trips include small numbers, modern apartments, comfortable transport, good food and fun and informative guiding throughout. Awesome trips for like minded adventure seekers!
Sailing is one of the oldest water sports in around and a number of people have made history by sailing across the world including Joshua Slocum who was the first man to sail around the world solo back in 1898, it took him a total of 3 years! However, maybe slightly more impressive is the more recent news of 16 year-old Jessica Watson who is now known as the youngest person to sail round the world solo. However, you don’t have to go to the extremes of sailing around the world to enjoy sailing, there are many centres especially on holiday where you can have lessons and experience the joys of sailing at your own pace. Want to cruise in the Caribbean? Why not try Sailing holidays with Boat Miamicharters, Sailing yacht charter with or without crew for your sea vacation adventure with Boat Miami. If you are after a Sailing Cruise for sailors who love to travel by sail boat. visit Sailing-cruise.net. The wind changing their direction, but cannot change the sailor's destination. Find Sailing Information for Traveling with sea and sun.
The popular sport of wakeboarding was developed from a combination of Snowboarding, Water Skiing and Surfing. The idea is for riders to balance on a buoyant board (similar to a surfboard) and get pulled along by a motorboat. These specially designed boats are made so they create a decent sized wake. It may seem as though wakeboarding is a relatively simple sport compared to the trickier water skiing and surfing, but don’t be fooled, riders can get up to speeds of around 25miles per hour. As with most water sports, the simple task of staying upright is a lot harder than it seems. Wakeboarding is the fastest growing water sport there and currently more than 3.1 million wake boarders around the world.
Equipment is an important part of any water based sport so make sure you are kitted out with the best there is. The first and most important factor to consider when buying your sports gear will be the level of protection offered by any product, followed secondly by the comfort factor. If you’re not relaxed in with your equipment, you won’t feel completely relaxed on the water. For more information on how to find the best Shore, Surf Clothing and Wetsuits, take a look at Shore.co.uk.
Whether you plan to go diving in koh tao or suffing in California, make sure you take a look at some of the guides we have here on the site for inspiration! And as always, I'd love to hear your comments so leave any suggestions for sites below and i'll add them to the post!