Extreme Sports

Why do people love extreme sports?

Extreme Sports
Photo by Jonathan Francis / Unsplash
  1. People participate in extreme sports such as BASE jumping, skydiving, and free-climbing despite the high risk of death.
  2. Psychologists believe that the fear response and the brain’s reward system play a role in why people engage in risky behaviors.
  3. Overcoming fear can be a meaningful and transformative experience for some people.
  4. The fear response triggers the release of dopamine, a powerful reward chemical, which can lead to sensation-seeking behavior.
  5. Like drug addicts, extreme athletes may need to perform more extreme events to achieve the same high as their brains become accustomed to higher levels of dopamine.
People participate in extreme sports such as BASE jumping, skydiving, and free-climbing despite the high risk of *death*. Psychologists believe that the *fear* response and the brain’s reward system play a role in why people engage in risky *behaviors*. Overcoming fear can be a meaningful and transformative experience for some people.The fear response triggers the release of dopamine, a powerful reward chemical, which can *lead to* sensation-seeking behavior. Like drug addicts, extreme athletes may need to perform more extreme events to achieve the *same* high as their brains become accustomed to higher levels of dopamine.
Extreme sports: High-risk athletic activities. Wingsuit: Special jumpsuit for gliding. BASE jumping: Jumping from fixed objects. Parachute: Device for slowing descent. Fear response: Body’s reaction to danger. Dopamine: Brain chemical for reward. Sensation-seeking: Pursuit of intense experiences. Amygdala: Brain region for emotions. Addiction: Compulsive need for substance/activity. Marathon: Long-distance running race. Acronym: Word formed from initials. Outcropping: Visible rock formation. Enthusiast: Passionate devotee of activity. Transformative: Causing significant change. Recollection: Act of remembering.
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