To the Extreme Though extreme sports surfaced years ago with activities like skydiving and surfing, these nontraditional sports--typically involving high levels of speed, height and danger--have yet to reach NFL proportions.
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But the past decade has seen exponential growth in the number of extreme sports. In 1995, the first X Games were held, featuring various competitions in motocross, skateboarding and more. Two years later came the Winter X Games, which helped bring snowboarding to the Winter Olympics that year.
Today, extreme sports are garnering more popularity, as more companies are seeing opportunity in the market's hip, daring, 10- to 30-year-old demographic. "It's amazing to see where [extreme sports] are right now," says lifelong skateboarder Ryan Farrelly, 29. "It's because of what kids are doing: They're pushing the limits."