The 5 Most Dangerous Sports

Some sports carry an inherent danger and here are five of the most perilous sports that we can think of.

Three Valley Ski resort in France

Adopting regular practice of physical activity is a central component of a healthy lifestyle, but there is potential for many sports to be dangerous and even life-threatening.

So, let’s take a look at five of the most perilous sporting pastimes.


On average, 13 boxers die in the ring every year, but the effects of the sport can change lives in the long term as well.

Not surprisingly, most injuries are caused to the head and eyes, but a fighter can suffer anything from cuts and bruises to internal bleeding and organ damage, with the most serious being those to the brain.

The power of the punch can cause all sorts of problems and speech difficulties and memory loss are common. And those are just the mild issues.


More than 500 bullfighters have been killed in the last 300 years, which is perhaps a modest number when you consider how dangerous the animal being faced is.

The worst-case scenario is that the bull can trample over you, but there have been numerous cases of horns ripping out eyes and there is scope for cuts and scratches to become infected with disastrous consequences.

High levels of medical protection persist, but fatal injuries do still occur so it is definitely a sport you do not want to try if you don’t know what you are doing.


Holding your breath for more than three minutes to head deep underwater is an obvious danger and Frenchman Arnaud Jerald went down more than 120 metres in August to beat his own world record in the Bahamas.

There has been only one recorded death in a competitive event, but there are plenty of amateurs who are not scared of having a go and some of them meet a sticky end.

Estimates are that there are about 5,000 freedivers and their numbers decrease by about 100 a year.

Base jumping

Base jumpers hurl themselves off fixed objects such as bridges, buildings and cliffs, holding an already-deployed parachute that allows them to ease to the ground. That’s the idea, anyway.

But there is no spare chute, so if it doesn’t work, things are not going to end well even if the fall is much lower than from a skydive.

A death occurs roughly every 2,300 jumps and they are not all due to impact with the ground. Sometimes a fatality is caused when the jumper hits a wall or the side of a cliff on the way down.


A total of 310 people are thought to have died trying to climb Everest. And that’s just one mountain.

Everything appears to conspire against the mountaineer. There is the exposure to changing weather which is the biggest problem. Rapidly changing conditions often prove fatal and frostbite is a big killer.

There are things like rocks, icicles and avalanches from above and crevasses and glaciers below your feet. And, if you survive that, altitude sickness can rear its ugly head as well.

When you climb a mountain, there is a one per cent chance you won’t come back.

And then there is free-soloing when climbers don’t even use safety equipment, a hobby that has been littered with deaths.

It’s probably just better to keep your feet on the ground.

A vastly experienced journalist, Ian has worked the beat on a number of local newspapers and covers a number of different sports for the Racing Post
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