From Action Sports Athletes to Pop Culture Superstars: There are Some New Style Influencers in Town


Welcome to a new paradigm. Surf, skate and snow are no longer the sports reserved to low budget, flannel shirt wearing, flip-flop clad punks. The standard ‘throw on a hoodie and drink beers by the fire’ for after surf or apres ski is not so typical anymore.  Now that action sports athletes have emerged in the spotlight as very well paid and very well-dressed icons, they are contending with the usual suspects of fashion and style like models, rappers, and movie stars.  With bigger pocket books, and more attention than ever before, the philosophy of no suits and no stress has been substituted for Oscars parties, private jets and hobnobbing with who’s who at events all over the world.

A Human Catapult Launches Base Jumpers, Angry Birds Style

After news leaked around the web, the Flying Frenchies have released a quick teaser of their recent high flying antics. This time around they’ve built a human-sized catapult on the top of towering cliffs. Instead of “Angry Birds,” this should be called “Crazy Humans.”

A full-length film created with 30 people over 3 months will be coming soon… and they promise a catapult wasn’t the only thing they took up the cliffs.

We Love Friday! – Climbing to New Heights: Fearless Rock Climbers


In his hilarious book, Stuff White People Like: A Definitive Guide to the Unique Taste of Millions Christian Lander wrote, “White people love rock climbing almost more than they love camping. This is because the activity affords them the opportunity to be outside, to use a carabiner for something other than their keys, and to purchase a whole new set of expensive activity-specific clothing and accessories.” I think there’s a little more to it than that- the sense of accomplishment and amazing view are a pretty big factor, but a funny generalization nonetheless. To celebrate this extreme sport that is quickly climbing to the top of many peoples’ lists of hobbies, we searched Instagram for this collection of photos that will make you want to join in on the fun.

Visual Bits #314 > Taking It To The Extreme

Check out your links after the jump!

Subwing: Soaring Beneath The Waves

Looking like a sublime mix between flying, snorkeling and wake boarding, the new Subwing has got to be the coolest new toy I’ve seen lately. The twin winged device — which looks like something out of a Keaton era Batman flick — allows the user to fly and roll underwater much like a stingray. Propulsion for the Subwing is provided by a tow rope from a boat on the surface; either a power boat, jet ski or as its developer Simon Sivertsen first used, even a sailboat. That last option would make this not only extremely cool looking, but also fuel friendly too.

Nat Geo’s Extreme Photo of the Week


In 2009 National Geographic announced they were ceasing the print version of their Adventure magazine. The incredible publication has showcased everything from extreme adventurers and explorers to more accessible adventure themed vacations for readers. As the landscape of publishing has changed, finding advertisers for such a niche magazine became increasingly difficult and so, the decision became final — the magazine was to find its home solely online. This is a similar story for many publications in recent times. Even the NY times laid off 10 long time staff photographers because of declining ad sales in the print publication. Is this all bad? With changing times also come new types of media.

Extreme Helicopter Filming & First Decent of Bell Ringer

The steep mountain slopes are beginning their yearly call to all adventurers. This crazy video captures the first decent of Bell Ringer near Haines, Alaska, where the only way to the top is by helicopter and the “landing pad” isn’t even big enough to land: they stick a partial skid into the mountain top while skiers Reggie Crist and Chris Coulter deftly jump onto the minuscule peak. This video gives us a look at the awesome skill needed to access, ski and film these amazing exploits

Old School Snowboarding Ads from 78 to 92

Today we take a trip down memory mountain, looking at some of the iconic snowboard ads that put the sport on the map. Snowboarding hasn’t always been the popular ride of the slopes that it is today; not long ago, some of us might remember, it was actually shunned by most of the ski parks. Boarders would literally have to hike to the top of a slope or get a snowmobile ride just to cut a line through some powder.
So give thanks for the pioneers of snowboarding and board on!

The Best Wingsuit Video Yet

You won’t find a better, more exhilarating wingsuit video than this! Just released by Phoenix-Fly, a leading wingsuit maker that sews some of the most high performance suits out there, The Need 4 Speed comprises moments taken from flights made during the 2009-2010 season. Filmed by the flyers themselves as they ride the wind all over Europe.

This Bruce Lee quote from the video is especially choice:
“Ultimately, martial art means honestly expressing yourself… it is easy for me to put on a show and be cocky, or I could show you some really fancy movement… But to express oneself honestly, not lying to oneself, and to express myself honestly… Now that, my friend is very hard to do.”

3 Wild Wingsuit Flying Videos

Exactly what does it feel like to be a flying squirrel? These three Wingsuit videos could help you find the answer, or maybe a new adrenaline-filled hobby. Combining skydiving and a special suit with fabric between the arms and legs, Wingsuit flying opens up the possibility for greater control and more horizontal flight.

This sport really brings new dimensions to the phrase “chasing your shadow.”