Since 2018, GoPro has been inviting its camera users to show off their athleticism and adventurous spirit with their Million Dollar Challenge. This year’s 4K highlight reel is not only packed with some exceptional action footage but serves as a testament to just how amazing action camera technology has become.
THE BEST Sports
Improve your golf swing in the comfort of your living room. The PhiGolf swing sensor works with your clubs or the included swing stick to track your every move. When used with the WGT Golf app mirrored from your smartphone to your TV, you can even see where the ball went. Use code GOLF10 at checkout to save $59.
Fans of America’s greatest pastime can pitch their cash inside Pro Style Sports’ Baseball Glove Wallet, a top-grain leather billfold made from the same stuff used for pro mitts and balls. Hand-sewn with 108 red stitches, it has a leather interior with eight card pockets and a money slot. Comes in white, brown and black.
Back in 2018, the talented drone pilots of Team BlackSheep headed to Germany’s Bikepark Idarkopf for the Audi Nines mountain bike competition. While there, they followed along with riders and captured some truly outstanding footage of their spins and flips. Their ski and snowboard footage is equally amazing.
Do you suck at basketball? Maybe you need a robotic assist. Stuff Made Here has previously built a motorized basketball hoop that deflects a ball into the hoop, but only work if you at least hit the backboard. This new robot solves that problem, letting you toss the ball pretty much anywhere in its general vicinity.
An excellent MLB pitcher can throw a 100 mph fastball. But what would it take to pitch a ball faster than the speed of sound? Destin from Smarter Every Day set out to answer that question, and enlisted his engineering pals to build a high-pressure cannon that can launch a ball so fast that it explodes on contact.
If you’ve got the right climate conditions, summer skiing can be a fun way to spend the day. During a run at Norway’s FONNA Glacier Ski Resort, skier Benjamin Forthun pulled off an awesome straight-line skim across a pond, then ended it with a serious flourish. Here’s some POV footage of a more recent run.
Washington State University track and field star Ray Wells Jr. shows of his incredible jumping skills as he bounces over a series of sequentially taller hurdles until reaching a peak of 55″. He makes it look so effortless you’d think his shoes were spring-loaded. They’re not.
Water skiing is tricky enough when you’re right on top of the water. But add to the mix a pair of 11-foot-tall stilts, and the difficulty level just increased to 11. Watch in awe as dentist Christopher Dens literally rises to the challenge, and sets an unofficial world record for the tallest successful waterski run. The failure video is equally entertaining.
Pro skateboarder Isamu Yamamoto shows off her sharp and creative freestyle moves, which include everything from handstands on the edge of a board, to some crazy double-board maneuvers. She performed the routine as part of the World Freestyle Round-Up 2020 Online Showdown.
Video artist Donato “Milkyeyes” Sansone combined footage of Olympic athletes performing a variety of movements, from gymnastics to diving to track and field events, seamlessly melding together their motions so they look like one extended routine. The technique is a refinement of his earlier clip, Concatenation.
While pro sports might be on hold in 2020, ESPN is keeping the dream alive with lots of great stories about the past. This episode of 30 for 30, docu-series looks back at the steroid-powered summer of 1998, as the Cardinals’ Mark McGwire and the Cubs’ Sammy Sosa battled it out for home run supremacy. Premieres 6.14.20.
The #1 requirement for getting into the Olympics is that you’re an exceptional athlete. Half as Interesting explains how in 2018, a woman managed to hustle her way into an event at the Pyeongchang games with not much more ability than a bunny hill skier. You can watch Elizabeth Swaney’s amazingly mediocre ski half-pipe run here.
Red Bull Skateboarding presents a short clip which combines athleticism with visual trickery to play with our perceptions. All of the illusions we created in camera by using custom-built set pieces, and no post-production effects. Stick around for a behind-the-scenes explanation with director Gaston Francisco.
Skier Sammy Carlson, CK9 Studios, and Monster Energy present a fantastic short film for snow lovers. It’s packed with footage of Carlson ripping up the backcountry through massive piles of unspoiled powder, and pulling off some epic jumps along the way as he makes his way down the mountainside.
Meet Spitfire. He’s a 7-year-old whippet with an impressive track record as the world’s best dock diver, which as we just learned, is a competitive dog sport. ESPN takes us inside the world of this talented canine, whose records seem as untouchable as the best athletes of all time. (Thanks Zico!)
If you’re looking for some of the world’s most extraordinary and extreme mountain bike trails, look no further than this video from Red Bull. Along the way, MTB riders Rob Warner, Matt Jones, Ollie Wilkins, and Finn Lies will take you on a trip through six spectacular locations, from Africa to New Zealand to Colombia.
Teton Gravity Research’s fantastic adventure film takes inspiration from the Grateful Dead song of the same name. Born from the mind of filmmaker and freeskier Chris Benchetler, and co-directed by Tyler Hamlet, it’s a chill 27-minute clip, packed with improvisational skiing, snowboarding, surfing, art, and music. (Thanks Scott!)
Normally, basketballs are made from rubber. But DIYer Cammie’s Garage works in wood, so he decided to see if he could make one by turning layers of maple into a sphere instead. It didn’t take the stain perfectly, but it’s still pretty cool. He previously made a sweet wooden football.
If you’ve ever made your way up the face of a climbing wall, you know it can take time, strength, and patience to make it to the top. Or you could be Aries Susanti Rahayu, the first woman ever to climb a 15-meter wall in under 7 seconds. Don’t blink, or you might miss it.
(PG-13: Language) Not to be confused with RocketJump’s awesome clip by the same name, in this video, Olympic skier Andri Ragetti performs a choreographed sequence of balancing exercises as he freeruns his way through a Rube Goldberg-inspired obstacle course. He says it took him 232 attempts to get it right.
Official baseball merch rarely gets off the bench, but the limited-edition Los Angeles Dodgers game-used watch from Tokens & Icons sports a leather face made from a baseball used in a MLB season game. Each face has red stitching, scuffs from field action, and an authenticity number linked to the ball’s game history. Also at Sundance.
This basketball is sure to bring a smile to every player’s face, driving down the court for a dunk, or grabbing a rebound off the backboard. This Urban Outfitters‘ exclusive design from Chinatown Market features the iconic 1960s Smiley face emblazoned on a yellow B-ball. It’s also available in a 3M reflective version for night games.
Toymaker Super7 presents a series of retro-style action figures inspired by major league baseball players, including greats like Willie Mays, Ted Williams, Jackie Robinson, Joe Dimaggio, Yogi Berra, and more. They even have the oddball Phillie Phanatic. Here’s hoping for more players and mascots in future.
In filmmaker Brandon Semenuk and Rupert Walker’s short action film, mountain bike riders Semenuk and Ryan “R-Dog” Howard pair up in close proximity to show off their skills and daring, while being pursued by an expertly-flown drone. Enjoy another 100 seconds of Semenuk goodness here.
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