Extreme Sports Books
A popular adventurer and wildlife presenter with all ages, Steve Backshall has been climbing since his teens and has a genuine love for the mountains.
- RRP £18.99
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This book is peppered with anecdotes of his climbs and is a celebration of the power of natural landscapes and how they can make us feel very small but also very alive. Despite breaking his back while climbing in 2008, Steve was not put off and managed to seek a variety of new challenges.
He looks back at some of his greatest achievements while climbing including the first ascent of Mount Kuli in the Bornean rainforest, his trek up K2 in Karakorum and describes the terror of a travelling companion's fall into a crevasse while trailing a snow leopard.
Exciting, inspiring and sure to make you feel on top of the world, this is a stunning autobiography about Steve's incredible achievements.
Chosen for their fantastic terrain and sensational beauty, this book features 150 runs on the trails and fells of Britain for those who want to experience something different to the gym or the city.
- RRP £16.99
- Save £13.00
From coastal trails to spectacular mountains, the book will take you all the way from building your fitness and technique to the country's roughest challenges and even incredible, overnight runs.
With stunning photography and engaging writing to capture the feelings of each run, route and landscape, this is a must-have for anyone who wants to run and admire the natural beauty of Britain at the same time.
Covering a diving championship in Greece on a hot and sticky assignment for Outside magazine, James Nestor discovered free diving. He had stumbled on one of the most extreme sports in existence: a quest to extend the frontiers of human experience, in which divers descend without breathing equipment, for hundreds of feet below the water, for minutes after they should have died from lack of oxygen. Sometimes they emerge unconscious, or bleeding from the nose and ears, and sometimes they don't come up at all. The free divers were Nestor's way into an exhilarating and dangerous world of deep-sea pioneers, underwater athletes, scientists, spear fishermen, billionaires and ordinary men and women who are poised on the brink of some amazing discoveries about the ocean. Soon he was visiting the scientists who live 60ft underwater (and are permanently high on nitrous dioxide), swimming with the notorious man-eating sharks of Reunion and descending thousands of feet in a homemade submarine. And on the way down, he learnt about the amazing amphibious reflexes activated in the human body under deep-water conditions, why dolphins were injected with LSD in an attempt to teach them to talk, and why sharks like AC/DC. The sea covers seventy per cent of Earth's surface, and still contains answers to questions about the world we are only beginning to ask: Deep blends science and adventure to uncover its amazing secrets.
- RRP £8.99
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This title is Winner of the Boardman Tasker Prize 2008. "Metro" magazine recently wrote that Andy Kirkpatrick makes Ray Mears look like Paris Hilton. Words like boldness, adventure and risk were surely coined especially for him. As one of the world's most accomplished mountaineers and big-wall climbers, he goes vertically where other climbers (to say nothing of the general public) fear to tread. For the first time, this cult hero of vertical rock has written a book, in which his thirteen-day ascent of Reticent Wall on El Capitan in California - the hardest big-wall climb ever soloed by a Briton - frames a challenging autobiography. From childhood on a grim inner-city housing estate in Hull, the story moves through horrific encounters and unique athletic achievements at the extremes of the earth. As he writes, 'Climbs like this make no sense ...the chances of dying on the route are high'. Yet Andy, in his thirties with young children, has everything to live for. This is the paradox at the heart of the story. This book - by turns gut-wrenching, entertaining and challenging - appeals to the adventurer in all of us.
- RRP £9.99
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This is the true story of a 24-hour period on Everest, when members of three separate expeditions were caught in a storm and faced a battle against hurricane-force winds, exposure, and the effects of altitude, which ended the worst single-season death toll in the peak's history. In March 1996, Outside magazine sent veteran journalist and seasoned climber Jon Krakauer on an expedition led by celebrated Everest guide Rob Hall. Despite the expertise of Hall and the other leaders, by the end of summit day eight people were dead. Krakauer's book is at once the story of the ill-fated adventure and an analysis of the factors leading up to its tragic end. Written within months of the events it chronicles, Into Thin Air clearly evokes the majestic Everest landscape. As the journey up the mountain progresses, Krakauer puts it in context by recalling the triumphs and perils of other Everest trips throughout history. The author's own anguish over what happened on the mountain is palpable as he leads readers to ponder timeless questions.
- RRP £8.99
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At the heart of "Born to Run" lies a mysterious tribe of Mexican Indians, the Tarahumara, who live quietly in canyons and are reputed to be the best distance runners in the world; in 1993, one of them, aged 57, came first in a prestigious 100-mile race wearing a toga and sandals. A small group of the world's top ultra-runners (and the awe-inspiring author) make the treacherous journey into the canyons to try to learn the tribe's secrets and then take them on over a course 50 miles long. With incredible energy and smart observation, McDougall tells this story while asking what the secrets are to being an incredible runner. Travelling to labs at Harvard, Nike, and elsewhere, he comes across an incredible cast of characters, including the woman who recently broke the world record for 100 miles and for her encore ran a 2:50 marathon in a bikini, pausing to down a beer at the 20 mile mark.
- RRP £9.99
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One night in 1974, a young Frenchman secretly - and illegally - rigged a tightrope between the twin towers of the World Trade Center. At daybreak, he gave the high-wire performance of all time, making eight crossings over the course of an hour, 110 floors up above the earth, as a hundred thousand people gathered on the ground to watch. In To Reach the Clouds, now filmed as The Walk, Philippe Petit re-creates a six-year quest to realise his dream, an adventure as thrilling as the walk itself. In an unforgettable memoir he tells the story of how he conspired, connived, improvised, and insisted his way to this 'coup', abetted by a motley crew of accomplices, the occasional miracle, and his own unflagging passion. He reveals himself to be not only a virtuoso of the air but also a bold and inspired performer on the page. Animated by never-seen photographs and Petit's ingenious sketches, To Reach the Clouds is a tour de force of the imagination and a serenade to his beloved towers.
- RRP £8.99
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Right now, more people are risking their lives for their sports then ever before in history. As Thomas Pynchon once put it in Gravity's Rainbow, 'it is not often that Death is told so clearly to f@%* off'. Over the past three decades, the bounds of the possible in action and adventure sports - from sky-diving to motocross to surfing and beyond - have been pushed farther and faster. A generation's worth of iconoclastic misfits have rewritten the rules of the feasible; not just raising the bar, but obliterating it altogether. Along the way, they have become a force pushing evolution relentlessly onward. In a thrilling narrative that draws on biology, psychology, and philosophy, Steven Kotler asks why, at the tail end of the 20th century and the early portion of the 21st, are we seeing such a multi-sport assault on reality? Did we somehow slip through a wormhole to another universe where gravity is optional and common sense obsolete? And where - if anywhere - do our actual limits lie?
- RRP £9.99
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Longlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year 2012. For over a decade, Dave Scott and Mark Allen were locked in one of the fiercest rivalries sport has ever known. The men, who seemed able to force their bodies into achieving the impossible, dominated the nascent sport of triathlon, continually pushing each other to ever-greater feats of athleticism and endurance. On October 14 1989 the battle between Scott and Allen reached its peak at the 13th Hawaii Ironman, when the pair raced the 140.6-mile event side by side, for eight straight hours at breakneck speed. The eventual winner's margin of victory was a scant 58 seconds. In a profound psychological portrait of these two men, and a gripping exploration of the aching gap between triumph and defeat, Iron War tells triathlon's greatest ever story.
- RRP £12.99
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Each year, thousands of competitors pit themselves against the elements, extremes of geography and their own psyches to take part in the world's hardest physical challenges. From the cold of the highest peaks to the unforgiving heat of the desert, by sea, bike or foot seemingly ordinary people are undertaking extraordinary feats. Whether seeking to prove themselves as athletes, or attempting to escape the humdrum, one thing they all have in common is an unbreakable drive to test the very limits of their endurance. Mental! looks at over 60 of the most extreme marathons, triathlons, bike rides and other iconic endurance events from around the globe, taking in the hottest, coldest, highest, and most remote locations in the world. With a detailed description of each event, featuring personal stories from the competitors, this book offers massive highs and excruciating lows, and shows just what we can achieve in pushing the boundaries o human endeavour.
- RRP £11.99
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Bear Grylls is a man who has always sought the ultimate in adventure. Growing up on the Isle of Wight, he was taught by his father to sail and climb at an early age. As a teenager he found identity and purpose through both mountaineering and martial arts, which led the young adventurer to the foothills of the mighty Himalaya and a grandmaster's karate training camp in Japan. On returning home, he embarked upon the notoriously gruelling selection course for the British Special Forces to join 21 SAS - a journey that was to push him to the very limits of physical and mental endurance. Then, in a horrific free-fall parachuting accident, Bear broke his back in three places. It was touch and go whether he would ever walk again. However, only eighteen months later Bear became one of the youngest ever climbers to scale Everest, aged only twenty-three. But this was just the beginning of his many extraordinary adventures...Known and admired by millions, Bear Grylls has survived where few would dare to go. Now, for the first time, Bear tells the story of his action-packed life. Gripping, moving and wildly exhilarating, "Mud, Sweat and Tears" is a must-read for adrenalin junkies and armchair adventurers alike.
- RRP £8.99
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Shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year award. One winter's night in 1976, over 20 million people in Britain watched John Curry skate to Olympic glory on an ice rink in Austria. Many millions more watched around the world. Overnight he became one of the most famous men on the planet. He was awarded the OBE. He was chosen as BBC Sports Personality of the Year. Curry had changed ice skating from marginal sport to high art. And yet the man was - and would always remain - an absolute mystery to a world that had been dazzled by his gift. Surely, men's skating was supposed to be Cossack-muscular, not sensual and ambiguous like this. Curry himself was an often-tortured man of labyrinthine complexity. For the first time, Alone untangles the extraordinary web of his toxic, troubled, brilliant - and short - life. It is a story of childhood nightmares, furious ambition, sporting genius, lifelong rivalries, homophobia, Cold War politics, financial ruin and deep personal tragedy. So much more than a run-of-the-mill sports biography, Alone reveals the restless, impatient, often dark soul of a man whose words could lacerate, whose skating invariably moved audiences to tears, and who - after succumbing to AIDS, as so many of his fellow artists and friends did - died of a heart attack aged just 44.
- RRP £9.99
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Fifty Places to Ski and Snowboard Before You Die - the tenth book in Chris Santella's popular "Fifty Places" series - takes readers on a tour de force of some of the world's most inspiring ski/snowboard areas. Based on interviews with leading ski/snowboarding experts, the book explores the rich history, personalities - and most of all, the experience - of visiting mountains from the Alps to the Rockies, of apres ski in Cortina or helicopter rides into virgin Alaskan powder.
- RRP £15.99
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All the moves to become a serious skateboarder. Praise for The Skateboarding Field Manual, also by Ryan Stutt: 'Stutt's appealing title is rife with the glossy glamour that should win nods of approval from even proficient shredders.' - Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books. From selecting the right board, to learning which way to stand, to landing a kick flip, Skateboarding Skills provides critical instruction for young riders of all experience levels. New riders will learn essential skills to advance their riding ability while experienced riders will learn new tricks to add to their repertoire. Ryan Stutt shows riders the fundamental techniques that will lead them to success as they practice skateboarding's most important and widely used flips, grinds and slides. These include: Ollies and Nollies; Manuals; Boardslides, Lipslides, Noseslides and Tailslides; 50-50 grinds, 5-0 grinds and Nose grinds; Smith grinds, Feeble grinds and Crooked grinds; Kickflips and Heelflips; Pop Shuvs; Varial Flips and 360 Flips. With Skateboarding Skills, riders will learn the building blocks that are the basis of all skateboarding tricks. Instruction for both flatground and vert skateboarding, plus real-time action sequences that capture the tricks step by step, will help riders learn how to execute the same moves that professional skateboarders use. All photographs show riders wearing the most essential of safety equipment - a helmet.
- RRP £9.95
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Across the world seemingly ordinary people are undertaking extraordinary challenges that will push their limits to achieve the improbable - by sea, bike, foot or sled. From the Badwater Ultramarathon in the unforgiving heat of Death Valley in California to the freezing wilderness of Alaska, these once-in-a-lifetime experiences are increasingly popular, and strangely addictive. For a certain breed of competitor, there is an unbreakable drive to see exactly how much the body and will can endure. Ultra-endurance events in the hottest, coldest, highest, most remote locations - these are no Sunday morning excursions but gruelling fights for survival and victory. This book looks at 50 of the most extreme marathons, triathlons, bike rides and other iconic endurance events from around the globe. The World's Toughest Endurance Challenges is a truly inspiring and beautiful collection of what we can achieve when racing to the limits. With full-colour stunning photography, coverage of every detail of these cruel challenges and including accounts of competitors who have lived to tell the tale, this book is a wonderful testament to those who face Mother Nature and survive.
- RRP £25.00
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Obstacle course races and mud runs such as Tough Mudder, Spartan Race, Warrior Dash, Rugged Maniac, and Muddy Buddy are all waiting for you to get Down and Dirty. Author Matt B. Davis offers an overview of the most popular races before tackling the most important concerns for any racer: preparation and training. Each obstacle-focused chapter will feature a leading obstacle race athlete who will offer expert advice on how to get prepared for your next race-whether it's your first or you're a recent devotee who wants to try them all. Because each race is different, this book will supply training advice for a variety of obstacles and races.
- RRP £14.99
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The Kiteboarding Manual is your complete practical guide to this fast-paced and addictive sport. It'll get you started with the kite and take you throughto flying it on the water, jumping, tricks and racing, as well as covering weather, wind and tide theory and helping you select the right kit. Sections cover: The origins of kiteboarding and massive rise in popularity in recent years How a kite flies and basic weather principles as well as background on tides and currents, waves, and wind vs tide Getting started on land - LEIrigging, assembly, launching and flying, body-dragging How to master your board skills -turns, stopping, rules of the road Going upwind, riding toeside, turning and transition Moving fast and riding waves; learning to tack and gybe Details on all kiteboarding disciplines from speed kiting to kiting on land How to improve your performance and enjoy incredible airtime! Packed with step-by step photo sequences explaining the basic moves all the way through to more advanced tricks, and including information on competitions and becoming an instructor, this is a book no kiter will want to be without.
- RRP £20.00
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Have serious fun as you master every essential kayaking skill. Are you a visual learner? Short on time? Do you like a little entertainment with your instruction? Then "Sea Kayaking Illustrated" is for you. It combines concise, easy-to-understand instruction with lively, information-packed, often hilarious illustrations to show you how to improve your kayaking skills. Developed by a certified instructor, this complete program in sea kayaking takes you on a visual tour of everything this accessible sport has to offer: paddling in wind and waves - in other words, sea kayaking! gear - every kayaker's favorite topic; rescue techniques - if you haven't flipped yet, just wait; carrying kayaks - learn the intricacies of ropes, straps, and racks; surf's up - tips for wave dodgers and seasoned shredders; river touring - no salt water needed! Kayak camping - how to leave no trace in style; coping with critters - from sea lions to sharks, and much more - yes, there really is much more.'While chock-full of dead-on sea kayaking instruction, it's the fun and easy-to-digest format that sets this book apart. Reading it is a pleasure' - Frederick Reimers, "Paddler". 'Just the thing if you want a solid and comprehensive look at sea kayaking in all its forms' - John Lull, author, "Sea Kayaking Safety and Rescues", instructor-trainer, ACA.
- RRP £13.99
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Amy Purdy, who inspired a nation on Dancing with the Stars and has been called a hero by Oprah Winfrey, reveals the intimate details of her triumphant comeback from the brink of death to making history as a Paralympic snowboarder. In this poignant and uplifting memoir, Dancing With the Stars sensation Amy Purdy reveals the story of how losing her legs led her to find a spiritual path. When the Las Vegas native was just nineteen, she contracted bacterial meningitis and was given less than a two percent chance of survival. In a near-death experience, she saw three figures who told her: "You can come with us, or you can stay. No matter what happens in your life, it's all going to make sense in the end." In that moment, Amy chose to live. Her glimpse of the afterlife-coupled with a mysterious premonition she'd had a month before -became the defining experiences that put Amy's life on a new trajectory after her legs had to be amputated. She wouldn't just beat meningitis and walk again; she would go on to create a life filled with bold adventures, big dreams, and boundless vitality-and share that spirit with the world. In 2014, Amy-the only competitor, male or female, with two prosthetic legs-claimed a bronze medal for the U.S. Paralympic team in adaptive snowboarding. She then became a contestant on season eighteen of Dancing With the Stars, and viewers were captivated as the girl with bionic legs managed to out-dance her competitors all the way to the finale. Amy's journey is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and the capacity we all have to dream bigger, defy expectations, and rewrite our stories. Amy was given a second chance for a reason-to use her life to inspire others. Her powerful memoir urges us to live life to the fullest, because we are all a lot more capable than we could ever imagine.
- RRP £9.99
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Gary and Joanie McGuffin's Paddle Your Own Canoe set a new standard for paddling instruction books. In this companion title, they use the same model for the art of kayaking. They offer expert, step-bystep instructions on all of the sport's essential techniques. They discuss the kayak's Inuit history, types of kayaking, recommended kayak sizes and shapes, and proper gear and clothing. Illustrated with more than 600 colour photographs and illustrations, Paddle Your Own Kayak is designed for both seasoned and novice kayakers, offering guidance on: Balancing the body; Strokes and maneuvers; Paddling fundamentals; Recoveries and rescues; Carrying and launching; Weather and water conditions techniques; Staying centred; Navigation methods. A special section on kayak camping provides good advice on what to look for in a destination, how to select a site, packing your kayak, setting up tents and shelters, meal preparation, water filtration, first aid and much more.
- RRP £16.95
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A stunningly illustrated book detailing the world's most breathtaking on-water adventures Whether it's paddling down mountain chasms or on gentle rivers and lakes, navigating a canoe or kayak counts as one of life's indescribable joys. And in this memorable collection of 100 extraordinary on-water experiences, author Jason Smith gives armchair adventurers and avid water sport enthusiasts a taste of what canoeing and kayaking feel like in every climate, condition, and geographical location. From the frozen wastes of North America, the rivers and seas of Europe and Asia, to the stunning waters of the Far East and Australasia, he brings each paddle stroke to life. With something for everyone--from the white water adrenalin junkie to the extreme kayaker--Ultimate Canoe and Kayak Adventures offers true-life adventurers useful, detailed information telling you exactly how, where, and when to attempt any on-water expedition yourself. * The author is an avid paddler with 20 years of experience, has been recognized as an "Extreme Photographer" by Professional Photographer magazine, and is editor of Canoe & Kayak UK* Striking full-page color photographs are matched with lively text that bring 100 adventures to life Offering a rare, inside look at living the life of adventure in every climate and latitude, this spectacular album of memorable canoeing and kayaking experiences is an ideal gift and a must for those who wish they'd been there--and those who already have.
- RRP £20.00
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Award-winning Brooklyn-based sports photographer Jonathan Mehring, named by ESPN as one of the top ten skateboard influencers, has logged thousands of hours with pro skate teams to some of the world's most unusual and unlikely destinations--from Mongolia and Australia to Kazakhstan and the Amazon. In this book he joins his photography with the best of his contemporaries to show the joy, excitement, and sense of freedom that skateboarding brings, uniting people in all walks of life and every corner of the world.
- RRP £20.00
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Palm Angels will be a definitive volume of the Los Angeles skateboarding scene. Photographed by the Italian creative director of Moncler, the volume devotes a special focus on the look and fashions of skate culture. While it emphasizes dramatic movement, it is less focused on describing tricks as it is about conveying the sensation of men and women engaged in an epic, all-consuming activity. This is achieved with over 200 photographs in colour and black and white, some large-format, and many duotoned in gold ink. Through art photography, this book aims to do for skate what Bruce Webber and others did for surf culture, elevating it from an exclusive and localized American preoccupation to a global phenomenon with an equally potent mystique, and one that engages a broad demographic. Pharrell Williams (known to the skate community as Skateboard P) has been instrumental in popularizing the skate look and has propelled it all the way to the high-street of fashion capitals like Paris, New York, and Tokyo.
- RRP £35.00
- Save £4.51