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adventure racing

What is Adventure Racing?

July 28, 2016
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Adventure racing or expedition racing is exactly what the name implies – a race that’s full of the wild and the unknown, a complete adventure. It is indeed a multi-disciplinary team sport so you can expect to go racing into the wilderness with the races being anywhere from two hours up to two weeks in duration.

Because adventure racing takes places over various terrains instead of being conducted on a regular sports field, you will need to be prepared for various kinds of sports like hiking, running, paddling and climbing, abseiling and horse riding to name a few.

Here’s a look at some of these forms of sports which can all be part of a single race when you are out adventure racing.


These are the most common sports that can make up an adventure race. While a majority of the races will start out as a run, they might soon evolve into a hike or a scramble depending on the territory. While training for adventure sports, ensure that you prepare for scrambling on difficult terrain such as wet, slippery ground for a competitive advantage.


If you take a look at most crossovers from a triathlon, you will notice that great paddling can make you one up than the roadies. An average two-hour paddle can give you a pretty good head start of 10-15 minutes.

As this is about expedition racing, you can expect anything from a comfy flat-water cruise on a serene lake to a Class 4 whitewater contest. Why not eight-foot oceanic swells while you are at it? The only way to excel at paddling while on an adventure race is to keep practicing in all possible scenarios.


Almost all of the races that you participate in will have a section for navigation or orienteering. In due course you will notice that good navigation skills can go a long way into bettering your team’s chances to succeed than speed. All you need to do is to practice, practice and practice with a map and a compass.


While shorter sprints may not need climbing, but a longer race is definitely going to include a rappel. In expedition and 24-hour races, there might also be a component of ascension using jumars. These are really fun and very easy to learn too.

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