5 Useful Tips For A Safe Whitewater Rafting Adventure

You may learn about the thrill and joy of taking a whitewater rafting trip before and want to experience it by yourself. Be aware that the trip can be dangerous, especially if you show up unprepared for what lies ahead. Before you can the adrenaline rush you wish for, stay safe first with the following tips:

Bring The Clothing Gear

Clothing gear you need to bring to a rafting trip including those to wear while on the river and after the trip is over. Plus, there are several items you need to take in the raft also.

Regarding Clothing:

Firstly you need to be prepared to get soaked. And well, you will get wet – that is part of the fun so you do not really need waterproof clothing. However, gym shorts or water-resistant shorts are recommended. Bring along water-friendly shoes also (no flip-flops pleas):– they should be sturdy enough.

When you get wet, you will want your clothing gear to dry off as quickly as possible. As a result, you can wear bathing suit or synthetic clothing. Make sure that you avoid cotton clothing.

If the weather is cold, you can wear a long sleeve shirt, synthetic or wool socks, windproof and waterproof pants and jacket. A change of clothes and a towel are necessary when you set your feet on land again.

A hat with brim and a pair of sunglasses (with retainer strap) will come in handy in sunny weather. But you will most likely need to wear a helmet instead.

Lifejacket: even if you are a great swimmer, having a lifejacket on all the time does not hurt. It will keep you afloat in dangerous situations. Always check and tighten the jacket so that the straps will not lose.

Other things you need to bring are:

A waterproof bag: obviously you need it to keep your belongings

Water bottle: It is essential to stay hydrated all the time

Snacks: if they are not provided during your trip

Medication: if any

Sunscreen: do not rake this lightly because you can get sunburn much easier and quicker than you think. Even a small tube (with a high SPF) is enough to keep you rafting experience enjoyable; or else, the sun can burn your skin.

Camera: if you want to keep the memories, it is fine but make sure the camera is waterproof and secure.

So what you should not wear or bring to the raft: leave jewelry and cash behind because they can get lost or wet.

Pick The Right Rapids For You

Rapids are classified on a scale of 1-6 in terms of increasing difficulty. When you are a beginner, the rule of thumb is to start slowly. Get familiar with whitewater rafting with slow currents and low waves in level I and II first.

This is an adventure sport that involves lots of risk; therefore do not put yourself in danger and choose the highest level from the start. Are you sure you can withstand large, frequent waves and deadly waterfall?  You need to know what you get yourself into and bring proper safety equipment with you on the trip.

Get A Guide

When you first start out, it is advised to hire a guide. Granted, you may handle well on your own if you just slowly float down a river with no strong current or wave; however, you never know what may happen. A guide is the person who will lead you out of danger, help you get out of the water and lead you on the right way for safety.

Listen to your guide and follow the instruction because your guide knows that he or she is doing.

Be Co-Operative

By being co-operative here, we do not mean that you listen to your guide only. Having good teamwork is the key for a safe and comfortable trip. Everyone, including you, need to stay in sync and paddle together to make the raft move smoothly.

Understand How To Keep The Balance

It is simple: if you do not keep your balance well, you can fall into water anytime.

Depending on your sitting location, you can tuck your front foot in the foot hold or under the air tube; however make sure your foot is not trapped. When you sit of the raft, choose the outer rim if possible. And when you feel insecure, just try to stick your paddle in the water to get an extra bracing point.

Which Is The True Winner: Skiing Or Snowboarding?

There is a lifelong rivalry between the two types of adventure sport: skiing and snowboarding. These sports have many things in common but also a number of distinctive differences.

Both are nice but you may not have enough to pursue them both. If you have to make a choice which sport to learn, what will you choose? Will you take on skiing that makes use of with a pair of skis that are bound to the boots where your body faces straight ahead and leg movements are permitted?

Or do you prefer descending snowy slopes with a snowboard attached to your feet through a special boot where your body faces sideways? Let’s have a look at the following comparison before making your choice.

Ease Of Learning

This is a very important factor to consider in choosing with sport to learn.

Skiing: No doubt, skiing is the winner here. Between the two, it is easier to pick up. You can ski decently after a short time; even though it takes longer to master. This is most likely due to the fact that legs movements are permitted: You can use your legs independently. Simply put, you are likely not to experience a painful “break-in” period.

Snowboarding: Be aware that you have to be patient in learning snowboarding due to its steep learning curve. You can easily become discouraged by numerous falls just within the first several days of learning.

Compared to skiing, it is harder to get accustomed to because you have both of your feet attached to a single board; no leg movements are allowed. It may feel unsettling and unnatural at first and you body is at degrees compared to your feet point.

However, you can master snowboarding faster than with skiing after you overcome the initial period.

Convenience

Skiing: Obviously, there are a lot of things that a skier needs to carry. You have to take care of skis, poles, boots and other safety items like helmets, gloves and goggles as well. Carrying them around is no joke and you are problem dead tired by the time you get to the lifts. However, you will soon have comfortable rides with chairlifts once you get the hang of it.

Snowboarding: With just a snowboard and a pair of boots to carry around, snowboarding seems to pose less trouble for you. The real issue begins, however, when you get on and off ski lifts. It takes quite sometimes to get used to. T-bars, for example, can be inconvenient for you.

Coolness

Basically, you will need to make your choice between a cool sport (aka snowboarding) and an more elegant sport (aka skiing).

The Injuries

Now we get to a really serious part. The types of injuries causes by these two types of sport are different.

Skiing: With skiing, you have poles to help keep your balance and navigate though rough terrain. The most typical types of injury you get with skiing is cruciate ligament ruptures. Skiing tends to be hard to your knees.

Snowboarding: It seems to be safer when it comes to leg injuries. However, you are most likely to suffer from upper body injuries, especially wrist, shoulder and ankle injuries.

Never go out with your snowboard without wearing wrist guards: the impact can be more brutal than you think. You need to exert so much energy and have to navigate without the help of poles. Do not be surprised if you body aches all over after an intense trip.

Adrenaline Factor

Skiing is the obvious choice if you look for speed.  It beats snowboarding big time, in fact. And have you heard about extreme skiing? This exciting but extremely dangerous sport is performed on long, steep slopes in mountainous areas.

So which one should you choose? If you like surfing, then snowboarding is probably the right option for you because you can get used to the side position of standing on a board quite quickly.

On the other hands, people who prefer skating may find skiing more suitable due to flexible and independent leg movements as well the body position of facing forward.

How To Stay Safe While Skateboarding?

Skateboarding is cool: there is no denying about this. But the number of accidents related to skateboarding is nothing good to write home about. Make sure you stay safe while skateboarding with the following guide:

Why Skateboarding Accidents Happen?

You can easily lose balance while riding a skateboard quickly over hard surfaces – that is for sure. It is not just about falling on the spot: you may run into another skateboarder, a pedestrian or a motor vehicle.

Accidents are most likely to happen because of the following reasons:

You do not take good care of your skateboard

You skip using protective equipment

You perform skateboard in irregular, unsafe surfaces or crowed locations

You overestimate your skill and perform tricks beyond your skill level.

What Types Of Injury You May Suffer?

Injuries related to skateboarding can range from being minor cuts and bruises to several head injuries and even death upon collisions with cars.

The most typical injuries involve the wrist, ankle or face. You can get cuts, bruises, strains, fractures…People who get hospitalized often suffer from head injuries, which can leave many serious consequences such as trauma, fractures, anxiety and even disabilities. Skating near traffic can lead to death.

At Which Age Should You Learn Skateboarding?

To be honest, skateboarding is not for everyone. It is not recommended for children under 5 because they often have poor balance and are lack of co-ordination skill. They also react slowly and do not have the necessary skill and experience to control a skateboard well or fall safely.

Children of 6-10 years old can skateboard with close supervision from their parents of a trustworthy adult/ adolescent; at this age range, they are still very inexperienced in judging potential risks.

How To Prevent Skateboarding Injuries

You can avoid a lot of injuries with the following tips:

Choose A Suitable Skateboard And Maintain It Well

Using a skateboard that fits you is important; never choose one that is too big or two small for your size and weight. Before each ride, spend some time to inspect your board:  look for signs of cracks and damage, tighten any loose parts and get the board repaired in case of serious defects.

Learn Basic Skills Properly

Before you want to perform difficult tricks, mastering basic techniques is a must. You need to know how to keep the balance, make a turn, slow down and stop the board properly first.

Learning to fall safely is also very important. Try to roll and fall on the fleshy parts of your body.

Wear Proper Protective Gear

At the very least, you need standard safety gear: helmet, knee pads, elbow pads and wrist guards. If you want to perform tricks, you should choose heavy duty gear for better protection.

Take note that the helmet must fit you properly. Also, wear appropriate shoes and empty your pocket of sharp objects that may hurt you when you fall.

Pick The Appropriate Location To Ride

Special attention should be paid when you skateboard on rough surfaces or injuries can easily occur. It is best to ride on areas free of rocks, cracks and traffic. Trails and skate parks are the best choices for you.

When you first start with skateboarding, choose areas that you know well. Slow down and always stay alert in unfamiliar and rough terrain for your safety.

Be Careful When Performing Tricks And Jumps.

Tricks and jumps are not easy; you can only perform them when you reach a certain level of skill and experience. Try them first in a safe environment. Avoid overestimating your skill or the consequence can be severe.

4 Rookie Mistakes To Avoid When Learning To Skateboard

Maybe you see people in your neighborhood skateboard all the time and secretly envy their flexibility. Or you want to look cool or find a way to vent out your loneliness so you start to learn skateboarding.

As a beginner, you may find the sport daunting and exciting at the same time. Keep it a fun experience by avoiding the following rookie mistakes and make a shortcut to success:

You Have No Commitment

If you just skate without knowing what you are doing this for, you may get bored or discouraged every easily. Whatever your reason to start skating is, think about it. Wanting to look cool may not take you far.

It is best that you find a good reason to skate, like for achieving health benefits or pushing your limit. Think about the positive side of skateboarding and set a goal for yourself: how skillful will you be in the next 6 months or 1 year? Your goal will drive you forward and make you feel more committed to learning.

You Only Think About Failing

Yes, you should be worry about failing because you will fall for sure. It is part of the learning curve. However, too much worry is not good for your health. Plus, fear of falling will prevent you from skating efficiently.

Think about the outcome you can achieve than worry about something that may never happen. Chances that what you worry about will not come true anyway so you would better focus your energy on measures to avoid falling than the consequences.

You can overcome your fear and get used to falling with time. Surely, it is a lot better than giving up before trying or just quitting after a fall or two, right? Look around you: there are people who suffer much worse falls and they still keep on learning until they can skateboard with ease and confidence.

Again, you can be sensible. But you should be willing to task risk or you will go nowhere.

You Hesitate When Making The Move

Your hesitation can mean two things: you are not well-prepared and you do not believe in yourself.

By being prepared, you need to prepare yourself physically and mentally. Physically, make sure your body is fine before you want to perform a trick; if you are sick and cannot focus well, then do not make a move.

Skill-wise, you should be skillful enough to perform the trick; do not cut corner and bike more than you can chew. So it is understandable to hesitate when your body is not at its best or when you know you do have enough skill.

But if you have perfectly fine body conditions and enough skill to perform jump, for example, but hesitate, you may make a deadly mistake here because your timing is crewed.  In skateboarding, timing matters! Many times you just have a very small window of opportunity to succeed.

When you hesitate for just a split second, you can easily lose balance and get injured; plus there can be worse consequences if you bump into another person or collide with a vehicle nearby. So, you need to make a choice: to step away from performing a trick/jump and start over later when you are mentally prepared or spare no second and jump into action.

You Do Not Have Fun

Learning to skateboard is not always smooth sailing. You will have bad days when you fall a lot or cannot seem to grasp a technique. When you feel frustrated, take a break and come back when your mind is more relaxed. If you skate without any fun or excitement, you lose the true purpose of skateboarding.

Longboard Or Shortboard For Beginners: Which Is The Winner?

Don’t you just love adrenaline rush you experience when surfing? It is so exciting and dangerous at the same time. Before you jump into the waves to enjoy the fun, you need a proper board first.

It is not really an issue for experienced surfers but beginners often wonder if they should choose longboards or shortboards. There are notable differences between these two types that beginners should understand to make the right choice.

Longboards

Between the two types, longboards came first. We can easily tell from the name that longboards are (much) longer and wider than shortboards. Typically, they are about 8 feet long and more.

With such a large surface area in touch with water and to plan their feet, riders feel more stable. Stability factor is very important for anyone who starts to learn surfing. If the board seems to unstable for you and you fall out a lot, you can easily become discouraged to continue learning.

If you want to paddle out, it is easy to do so on a longboard. You just need to lay down with your stomach on the board and use your hands to paddle through the water. Catching (small) waves will not really be an issue for you. Longboards are often associated with fancy footwork.

It is clear that longboards are ideal for beginners as they are more forgiving and require shorter learning curve. If you start out modestly, this is the better option.

It is not to say that longboards are perfect, though. Handling steep, big waves are not easy: it requires riders to have certain skills and experience to generate good speed and make radical turn. These days, many people use longboards as if they are shortboards to carve in and out of the wave.

Shortboards

Shortboards appeared later than longboards; you can think of them as modern versions of longboards. Obviously, they are shorter (typical about 5-7 feet).

There are two main reasons why they are probably not the right choices for beginners.

Firstly, they are less stable: you have less area for placing your foot and the boards are more volatile in movements.

Secondly: getting up on them is harder because they do not catch waves easily. If you want to get up, paddle harder.

Despites these shortcomings, shortboards are very popular because they are easier to maneuver thanks to their aerodynamic shape and design. Basically, they offer you more freedom. They are much better choices to carve throughout the waves and to deal with steep faced waves.

And in case you want to pick up more speeds and make radical turns: it is not a problem with shortboards.  With time, you will become more experienced and can choose the right time to hit the wave and speed up to the maximum.

To start out, it is recommended that you choose a longboard because it is easy to use. However, if you prefer better mobility, pick a shortboard instead. You should try them both before you can decide what really works for you.