Extreme sports

Amazing, inspiring feats of daring and determination that will bring you everywhere from the high skies to the deep sea.

  1. 12:13
    Ueli Gegenschatz Extreme wingsuit flying

    Wingsuit jumping is the leading edge of extreme sports — an exhilarating feat of almost unbelievable daring, where skydivers soar through canyons at over 100MPH. Ueli Gegenschatz talks about how (and why) he does it, and shows jawdropping film.

  2. 9:42
    Chris Burkard The joy of surfing in ice-cold water

    "Anything that is worth pursuing is going to require us to suffer, just a little bit," says surf photographer Chris Burkard, as he explains his obsession with the coldest, choppiest, most isolated beaches on earth. With jawdropping photos and stories of places few humans have ever seen — much less surfed — he draws us into his "personal crusade against the mundane."

  3. 15:35
    Diana Nyad Never, ever give up

    In the pitch-black night, stung by jellyfish, choking on salt water, singing to herself, hallucinating … Diana Nyad just kept on swimming. And that's how she finally achieved her lifetime goal as an athlete: an extreme 100-mile swim from Cuba to Florida — at age 64. Hear her story.

  4. 4:48
    Matthew Childs 9 life lessons from rock climbing

    In this talk from TED University 2009, veteran rock climber Matthew Childs shares nine pointers for rock climbing. These handy tips bear on an effective life at sea level, too.

  5. 19:10
    Guillaume Néry The exhilarating peace of freediving

    In this breathtaking talk, world champion freediver Guillaume Néry takes us with him into the ocean's depths. Meter by meter, he explains the physical and emotional impact of water pressure, silence and holding your breath. His eloquent description of the underwater experience reveals the hidden poetry of freediving.

  6. 16:47
    Dame Ellen MacArthur The surprising thing I learned sailing solo around the world

    What do you learn when you sail around the world on your own? When solo sailor Ellen MacArthur circled the globe – carrying everything she needed with her – she came back with new insight into the way the world works, as a place of interlocking cycles and finite resources, where the decisions we make today affect what's left for tomorrow. She proposes a bold new way to see the world's economic systems: not as linear, but as circular, where everything comes around.

  7. 9:38
    Sue Austin Deep sea diving ... in a wheelchair

    When Sue Austin got a power wheelchair, she felt a tremendous sense of freedom — yet others looked at her as though she had lost something. In her art, she conveys the spirit of wonder she feels wheeling through the world. Includes thrilling footage of an underwater wheelchair that lets her explore ocean beds, drifting through schools of fish, floating free in 360 degrees.

  8. 17:04
    Ben Saunders To the South Pole and back — the hardest 105 days of my life

    This year, explorer Ben Saunders attempted his most ambitious trek yet. He set out to complete Captain Robert Falcon Scott's failed 1912 polar expedition — a four-month, 1,800-mile round trip journey from the edge of Antarctica to the South Pole and back. In the first talk given after his adventure, just five weeks after his return, Saunders offers a raw, honest look at this "hubris"-tinged mission that brought him to the most difficult decision of his life.